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'Dirty camera' doc allowed to continue as GP.

Byline: Mike Lockley Staff Reporter

A DIRTY doctor, caught secretly filming up the skirts of Birmingham shoppers, can still practise as a GP.

But Dr Buddhi Ranjan Yapa Abeywardena, who claimed he didn't believe there were anything wrong in taking the sordid snaps, has been hit with a string of strict working conditions by medical chiefs.

And the 63-year-old, who sports an electronic tag following his shameful antics in The Bullring, has not been seen at his Iver, Buckinghamshire, surgery since his arrest.

Recently, the General Medical Council confirmed Abeywardena, who qualified as a doctor in his native Sri Lanka 38 years ago, is free to work, but under 10 strict conditions. These include having a "chaperone" present during consultations with female patients. Condition nine states: "He must not undertake intimate examinations of female patients."

Despite the criminal conviction for outraging public decency, a decision over whether Abeywardena will face a "fitness to practise" hearing, where he could be struck off, has yet to be taken.

He was arrested last August in the Bullring after using a camera in a key fob to film young women. At Birmingham Magistrates Court, Abeywardena was handed a community order, placed on a three -month curfew and tagged.

After the high-profile case, a spokesman for the Crown Prosecution Service said: "Dr Buddhi Abeywardena claimed that he was unaware that his actions and behaviour were an offence as he felt he was not hurting anyone.

"What this defendant was doing was committing a very serious criminal offence and this was not a victimless crime.

"Young females were being stalked by this man and then arrested. His offence does not relate to patients and did not occur at Iver Heath Health Centre. The practice has plans in place to ensure the continuation of medical services for our patients."

A spokesman for the Medical Practitioners Tribunal Service said a fitness to practice hearing is likely to be set within the next few months.
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Publication:Birmingham Mail (England)
Date:Feb 24, 2014
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