A patient support group in Queensland has greeted the news of controversial surgeon Dr. Jayant Patel's arrest with relief.
Patel, also known as "Dr. Death", has been linked to the deaths of 17 former patients of Queensland's Bundaberg Base Hospital.
The FBI arrested him in Portland, Oregon, overnight.
Bundaberg Hospital Patients Support Group co-convenor Beryl Crosby said she heard the news about 3 a.m. today and immediately phoned former patients of the doctor to inform them.
"We made a pact that they were to be told and they were very excited and relieved," she told AAP.
According to The Australian, Crosby said the group would now sit back and let justice take its course, whatever the outcome.
Dr. Patel is due to face court in Oregon today for a hearing on an extradition request by Australia.
Crosby said the patients understood it was a complex case with 35,000 pages of evidence and numerous charges.