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Tomlinson pathologist given ban

The pathologist who botched the post-mortem examination on newspaper seller Ian Tomlinson who died in the G20 riots has been banned from working as a doctor.

Dr Freddy Patel, described as being arrogant and having a bad attitude, was finally banned from practising as a medic after being investigated numerous times and suspended on two previous occasions over his shoddy work dating back a decade.

Dr Patel was found guilty of misconduct but was not at the Medical Practitioners Tribunal Service (MPTS), sitting in Manchester, where he was struck off the medical register.

The medic's actions were found to be misleading, dishonest and liable to bring his profession into disrepute over parts of his handling of the post-mortem on Mr Tomlinson.

The doctor, who qualified at the University of Zambia in 1974 and has practised as a pathologist for 35 years, was excused attendance but listened in on the hearing by conference call from London. He had already botched previous post-mortem examinations dating as far back as 2002 by the time Mr Tomlinson died in 2009.

Dr Patel was found guilty of serious misconduct and suspended for four months over his post-mortem examination reports in 2002 into the death of a victim of so-called "Camden Ripper" Anthony Hardy.

The naked body of Sally White, 31, was discovered in a room in Hardy's flat in January 2002. Dr Patel explained away her injuries and ruled she died from natural causes. In fact she was the first victim of serial killer Hardy and suspected of having been asphyxiated.

The Rev Robert Lloyd-Richards, chairman of the MPTS fitness to practise panel, told Dr Patel today: "Your rigid mind-set, illustrated by your inability to reflect on the case of Mr Tomlinson and your unwarranted confidence in your own abilities does not convince this panel that it would be appropriate to impose conditions, even with the most stringent supervision, on your registration.

"The panel considers that you have a deep-seated attitudinal problem. You have twice been suspended for your failings in relation to post-mortem examinations you have carried out. You have now appeared before a fitness to practise panel three times."

After the MPTS hearing Mr Tomlinson's widow Julia said: "We aren't surprised he has been struck off. It is more of a surprise that he was able to work as a pathologist for so long and that he was selected to do the post-mortem on Ian. We are pleased that he will not be able to put any more families through the ordeal he caused us, but the damage he has done can't now be undone."

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