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G20 pathologist irresponsible - GMC

The pathologist who first ruled that newspaper seller Ian Tomlinson died from natural causes at the G20 protest has been found to have behaved "irresponsibly" in other post-mortem examinations.

Dr Freddy Patel, 63, was said by a General Medical Council (GMC) disciplinary panel to have failed to identify marks on the body of a five-year-old girl which suggested she had been violently attacked prior to her death.

The panel said Dr Patel's conduct was "irresponsible" and not of the standard expected of a Home Office pathologist.

He was also said to have behaved in a way which was liable to bring the profession into disrepute when he changed the cause of a woman's death to satisfy her family.

Panel chairman Richard Davies said Dr Patel's report into the death of the five-year-old girl, who was admitted to hospital with a head injury following what was said to be a "serious fall", gave no details of so-called "marks of violence".

His report said there were no "significant" marks of violence which Dr Patel told the panel meant there were no marks relevant to the child's death.

Mr Davies said: "If there were no significant marks of violence in your view, by implication there were some marks of violence."

The panel was shown evidence of marks which had been visible to the naked eye but said Dr Patel did not identify them in his report of September 17 2002 and did not comment on their possible significance.

Mr Davies said the panel considered it "probable" that Dr Patel "performed only a cursory external examination of the body".

"Had you acted differently, it is possible that you might have probed marks above the scapula (shoulder blade) which was later shown to be injured," he added.

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