Sex pest doctor ‘octopus’ faces jail for groping fellow hospital workers

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A “SEX pest” medic is facing jail for groping colleagues at the hospital where he worked as a respected anaesthetist.

Dr Niaz Ahmed, of Broadlands, Cleadon, was considered to be “always the octopus, hands all over the place” by sickened nurses who he made repeated lewd comments to at South Tyneside Hospital.

Newcastle Crown Court heard the “highly skilled” 55-year-old doctor, who boasted he was “looking for women the day after he got married”, was repeatedly warned by hospital bosses to tone down his outrageous behaviour.

A jury yesterday convicted him of two sex assault charges on his co-workers, during incidents more than a decade ago, and he was told he must sign the sex offenders’ register.

Ahmed will learn his fate at a sentencing hearing next month, but Judge Simon Hickey warned him: “I am not promising what type of sentence I am going to pass, all options remain open”.

Ahmed, who was suspended from medical practice at a tribunal earlier this year for groping a nurse who was treating him after an accident in 2010, was cleared of three similar charges.

He was granted bail until he is back before the judge next year.

Prosecutor Michael Hodson told the court Ahmed had not committed “grave” sex crimes and caused no serious physical injury to his victims.

But he added: “Imagine what it was like going to work with a sex pest, always the octopus, hands all over the place, underlined by innuendo.”

Mr Hodson said one nurse victim was targeted in the scrub room at the hospital, where Ahmed squeezed her bottom and asked her “do you fancy it”.

Another had her breasts prodded by the medic while she was at work and said he had told her “put them away”.

Ahmed denied the charges against him and claimed his behaviour was jokes and banter.

Mr Hodson added: “As all sex pests may well do to get away with their nuisance behaviour, they pass it off as banter, as he did.”

The court heard during a meeting with hospital bosses in 2000 Ahmed accepted it was inappropriate to touch nurses and said any offence caused by him was entirely innocent and accidental.

During a later meeting with management he said his behaviour continued to be innocent and fit in with the “culture” of the hospital.

Ahmed had claimed he was the victim of a “witch hunt” in 2012, after he was cleared of sexually assaulting two teenage girls at a fireworks display in South Shields in 2011.

The youngsters claimed Ahmed had groped them after boasting about the size of his manhood and complaining about his sex life with his wife.

Judge Hickey said he wanted to know more about Ahmed’s attitudes before he considered sentence.

He told him: “You will have to sign a document because of the finding of sexual assault.”

Ahmed has been allowed to remain on bail until the next hearing.