3rd Jul, 2022

Doctor speaks out as conviction for 'groping patient' is quashed - after serving time in jail

A DOCTOR from Balsall Common has spoken out after having a conviction of sexually assaulting a female patient quashed.

Dr Rajeshkumar Mehta, a senior GP, had been jailed and struck off the medical register.

Earlier proceedings had concerned an alleged incident while he was employed as a locum at The Hill General Practice and Care Centre in Sparkhill.

Mehta, aged 65, was found guilty of one count of sexual assault and jailed for 15 months in April 2018 and was ordered to sign the sex offenders’ register.

It was alleged he had fondled a patient’s breasts.

A report from the Medical Practitioner Tribunal Service (MPTS) proceedings this year – which had struck him off – had considered the sentencing remarks of the trial judge.

It was claimed the woman had been “complaining of what might have been the early symptoms of a heart attack” when Dr Mehta touched her inappropriately and made comments of a sexual nature.

He was given 28 days to appeal against the MPTS decision.

Last week, he had the conviction quashed by the Court of Appeal after new evidence was presented concerning the credibility patient’s claims.

He said after last week’s decision of the judge: “I would like to express my enormous relief that my name has been cleared, after three very difficult years.

“Over the past year, my wife and children have carried the burden and spearheaded a campaign to clear my name.

“After my conviction, I lost everything. I lost my career after nearly 40 years of NHS service.

“I lost my reputation after adverse media coverage, not only following the conviction, but also following the medical regulator’s decision to strike me off the medical register, instead of waiting for the outcome of the ongoing appeal.

“Whilst in prison, I shared cells with others in two prisons, including a category B Birmingham prison, which, when inspected, was found to have frightening levels of drink, drugs and violence amongst inmates, with corridors littered with cockroaches, blood and vomit.

“After I was released, I endured regular, repetitive and humiliating interviews with trainee probation officers, asking me detailed questions relating to sexual assault matters.

“My house was visited by police officers. I was put on the sex offenders register. Without my family’s support, I would not have survived.

“The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) and West Midlands Police have a lot to answer for; in my case, their disclosure failings contributed to a catastrophic outcome, and, whilst I have already served my sentence, I hope that my case will further highlight the need for them to perform their obligations properly.

“I feel very anxious for the medical profession. Doctors work to do their very best for their patients, often in challenging circumstances, and there simply are not adequate protections to safeguard them against the few patients who make false accusations.”

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