Doctor who sexually abused patient fights to keep name secret


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A family doctor who sexually violated a young female patient during an intimate examination is fighting to keep his name secret.
The doctor was found guilty following a jury trial at the Manukau District Court in 2019 and sentenced to two years and 10 months in prison.
At the doctor’s sentencing in the Manukau District Court in October 2019, Judge Tini Clark described the offending as a gross breach of trust against a vulnerable young woman.
The woman visited the clinic in December 2017 and was initially seen by a female doctor who allowed her to undress behind a curtain. The doctor also used gloves during the examination.
However, the male doctor asked to see her also.
He made the woman undress in front of him and did not use gloves during his examination.
He also sexually abused her.
The doctor claimed at his trial that there was no physical examination.
Judge Clark noted the jury did not accept the doctor’s story.
“The victim placed a high level of trust in you as a health professional, you had known her since she was a young teenager. You were the family doctor. “… Outside of cases of sexual offending by a family member, it is hard to imagine a more gross breach of trust.”
The doctor’s lawyer, Marie Dyhrberg QC, asked for discounts for her client’s previous good character and his “fall from grace”. She advocated for a sentence of home detention.
The Crown prosecutor Luke Radich maintained that a prison sentence was needed.
He said the doctor’s defence relied on attacking the survivor’s credibility.
Judge Clark noted that before the police got involved, the victim had made a complaint to the Health and Disability Commissioner. After learning of the complaint, the doctor went back into his digital clinical notes and changed them, in an effort to bolster his own story.
Judge Clark did take some time off his sentence for his previous good character.
“There is absolutely no doubt… that prior to this event you had an unblemished record, you were extremely well thought of, and indeed, those sentiments still remain, notwithstanding people are aware of the position that you are now in.” Judge Clark said the doctor did not accept the jurors’ verdict and showed no remorse.
She sentenced him to two years and 10 months in prison.
Since his conviction, the doctor had sold his clinic.
At a hearing in January, the doctor and the new owners of the clinic applied for permanent name suppression.
They argued naming him could cast suspicion on others, cause undue hardship on the clinic and the doctor’s wife.
Judge Clark noted the doctor was no longer connected to the clinic. She said while there was a risk to the doctor’s wife, she had the support of her family and mental health workers.
Judge Clark said she had to balance the public interest principles and the interests of the doctor’s wife.
“At the time of the offending [the doctor] was a trusted member of the medical profession and offended against the victim during an intimate medical examination.–Agencies