Plaistow GP given seven years jail for sex assaults on patients

�A perverted GP who sexually assaulted five women while pretending to carry out medical examinations was jailed for seven years.

Dr Haleem Bhatti, 48, targeted his victims when they consulted him for rashes, chest pain and weight gain.

He questioned them about their sex lives and massaged their breasts and between their thighs, Inner London Crown Court heard.

Bhatti was found guilty of molesting the women while working at Greengate Medical Centre, in Plaistow, from September 2006 to July 2009.

Judge Simon Davis said the shamed medic, who qualified in Pakistan, had “deliberately fabricated” his patients’ medical notes to disguise his “illegal and dreadful” behaviour.

Bhatti had “abused his position as a GP” to take advantage of the women “under the guise of performing medical examinations”, said Sarah Jane Campbell, prosecuting.

The doctor left them feeling “very uncomfortable, upset and stupid”.

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“He was acting opportunistically,” said Ms Campbell.

“There were examinations of the breast or touching of the vagina, in circumstances where there could have been no medical justification.

“On none of the occasions did he ask the women if they wished to have a chaperone.

“He did not wear gloves when touching their vaginas, which is against guidance.”

Bhatti’s first victim in was so stunned that she pushed his hand away.

The prosecutor said: “She started to get uncomfortable because she could not understand why he was examining her breast as she was not having trouble in that location.

“His other hand had moved down towards her pelvic area and his fingers were trying to part her vaginal lips.

“Her hand shot down and stopped him touching her.”

The woman complained to her mother after leaving the surgery, who made a complaint to another GP there.

But “nothing formal” resulted from the complaint.

Another woman said Bhatti examined her breasts when she complained of a rash on her belly, arms and legs.

A third woman complained to another GP at the practice in late 2009, after Bhatti gave her a similar examination.

In July 2009 Bhatti asked another patient with a urine infection to undo her jeans and lie back.

She mentioned her chest sometimes felt tight and he went on to show her “how to self-examine” her breasts, jurors heard.

After speaking to members of her family she phoned the practice nurse the next day and filed a formal complaint.

During police interview Bhatti denied acting inappropriately with his patients and claimed one was upset with him because he had not referred her to a specialist.

Four character witnesses, made up of three doctors and Bhatti’s partner, gave glowing live

His girlfriend of 12 years, who gave her name only as Miss Kaye, said she was standing by him and added: “I love him very much.

“I don’t know how I’m going to get through the next few months I really don’t.”

The court heard he would not be able to pay any costs as he has no money.

He is now likely to be struck off by the GMC.

Judge Davis told Bhatti: “The notes were a tool used by you to cover up your illegal and dreadful behaviour.

“Each of the women felt betrayed. You fundamentally, at least in medical terms, changed their lives for the worse and significantly.

“The fact that you were a doctor means in my view, the breach of trust is a huge one.

“There was no need for you to conduct the examination to the extent that you did and I find your motive was sexual gratification.

The GP must sign indefinitely as a sex offender.

Bhatti, most recently of Ajax Avenue, Barnet, north-west London, and formerly of Terrace Road, Plaistow, was convicted of four sexual assaults, all on different women, in which he touched their breasts and genitals, and a fifth charge of assault by penetration on another woman.

The GP was cleared of two charges of touching a woman’s breasts and pubic hair.