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Top Ga. court to consider assisted suicide law

— ATLANTA — Georgia's top court will consider a free-speech challenge to the state's law against assisted suicide brought by four members of a suicide group charged with helping a cancer-stricken man kill himself.

The Georgia Supreme Court on Monday will consider whether to overturn a Forsyth County judge's decision that free speech isn't limited by the law, which makes it a felony for anyone who publicly advertises to assist someone else in the act of suicide.

The four claimed it violated their free speech rights because instead of criminalizing suicide or assisted suicide, it bans people from publicly speaking about assisted suicide and then participating in the death.

But prosecutors argued the statute was drafted to discourage assisted suicide, even if that wasn't spelled out in the law.

Copyright 2011 The Associated Press.