Disgraced Newham police officer jailed for blackmailing prostitutes worked at hospital without disclosing previous convictions
PUBLISHED: 17:00 13 December 2018
A disgraced former police officer from Newham who was jailed for blackmailing prostitutes worked at a hospital for a year after getting out of prison and never underwent a compulsory background check, the Recorder can reveal.
Kabeer Yousaf was jailed for six years at Snaresbrook Crown Court on February 24, 2015.
A three-month trial had resulted in him being found guilty of two counts of blackmail, conspiracy to commit misconduct in a judicial or public office and committing misconduct in a judicial or public office.
The charges related to an incident that occurred when Yousaf was still a member of the Metropolitan Police’s Green Street Safer Neighbourhoods Team in Newham back in 2012, when he arranged to have sex with a woman at a brothel before later demanding £2,000 from her.
He also blackmailed a woman who ran another brothel, who agreed to pay him £500 a fortnight to stop it being shut down.
In 2017, after being released from prison on licence, Yousaf was able to gain employment at Queen’s Hospital in Rom Valley Way, Romford, working for contractors Sodexo – but failed to disclose his conviction to his employer.
At first, he worked in a retail role that meant he never came into contact with vulnerable patients. However, in July this year he was promoted to become a porter supervisor, a role that meant he came into contact with patients, and so should have undergone a mandatory DBS check.
This never happened.
Earlier this week, a number of Queen’s Hospital employees contacted the Recorder claiming they had discovered Yousaf’s criminal past and no longer felt safe working with him.
One, who wished to remain anonymous, said: “People with shady pasts like that shouldn’t be working in hospitals full stop – now people have found out about it there’s a load of us here that feel really uneasy every day when we come into work.
“None of us have a clue how he ever got a job here.”
A second claimed a group of staff had uncovered Yousaf’s past after Googling his name and felt so unsafe they had done their best to make sure no female employees were ever left alone with him.
It is important to note that no evidence has been produced to suggest Yousaf ever assaulted or intimidated patients or staff while working at the hospital, and none of the hospital employees the Recorder was able to speak to could make any specific allegations against him other than his past conviction.
Sodexo and the Barking and Havering University Hospital Trust, which runs Queen’s Hospital, were made aware of the allegations and a brief internal investigation confirmed that Yousaf was the same man who was convicted in 2015.
Sodexo also confirmed Yousaf was placed on restricted duties, and has now resigned from his post at the hospital.
A company spokesman told the Recorder: “Due to an administrative oversight, an employee was not background checked before taking on patient-facing duties.
“As soon as this employee was DBS checked and found to have a previously undisclosed criminal record he was immediately removed from patient-facing duties pending further investigation.
“The employee has since resigned.
“The safety of patients, visitors and staff is an absolute priority for us and we are reviewing our procedures to ensure this does not happen again.”
BHRUT also stressed all contractors who provide services at the hospital had been asked to recheck their employees’ backgrounds as a result of the incident.
Chris Bown, the NHS health trust’s interim chief executive, said: “We were disappointed to learn recently that Sodexo had hired and subsequently promoted an employee without undertaking the necessary background
“We have asked Sodexo to undertake an urgent and comprehensive investigation to understand what went wrong.
“This will include offering the opportunity for all staff to bring forward any concerns confidentially.
“We are ensuring both our main facilities management companies recheck all their employees to ensure they are compliant.
“We take matters of safeguarding extremely seriously and will be ensuring this is investigated as a matter of priority with actions taken so it doesn’t happen again in future.”