Man charged with aiding suicides online

April 23, 2010 11:04:12 AM PDT
A Minnesota man has been charged with aiding the suicides of two people by encouraging them to kill themselves in Internet chats. William Melchert-Dinkel of Faribault was charged Friday in Rice County, Minn., under a rarely used state law that carries a maximum penalty of 15 years in prison.

He's been charged with two counts in the suicides of a Canadian woman and a British man. Mark Drybrough, of Coventry, England, hanged himself in 2005, and 18-year-old Nadia Kajouji of Brampton, Ontario, drowned in Ottawa in 2008.

Melchert-Dinkel had been a nurse but was stripped of his license last year. His first court appearance is scheduled for May 25.

A message left at Melchert-Dinkel's home Friday wasn't immediately returned.