Doc­tors won’t face dis­ci­plinary ac­tion

The Hamilton Spectator - - CANADA & WORLD - MICHELLE MCQUIGGE

TORONTO — Two Toronto-area doc­tors who were ac­quit­ted in court of sex­u­ally as­sault­ing a med­i­cal stu­dent will not face their pro­fes­sional reg­u­la­tory body over the case.

Dr. Amitabh Chauhan and Dr. Su­gan­than Kay­i­lasanathan were due to face a dis­ci­plinary hear­ing Mon­day be­fore a panel with the Col­lege of Physi­cians and Sur­geons of On­tario.

But the hear­ing was ad­journed as it was about to get un­der­way af­ter a lawyer with the col­lege in­di­cated the al­leged vic­tim would not be tes­ti­fy­ing be­fore the panel.

The woman, re­ferred to as Ms. X, had pre­vi­ously spo­ken at both the pre­lim­i­nary hear­ing and the crim­i­nal trial for the two doc­tors, who were ac­cused of drug­ging and rap­ing the woman in a ho­tel room af­ter a night of par­ty­ing.

A judge ac­quit­ted the pair, say­ing there was rea­son­able doubt as to whether the sex­ual en­coun­ters were non-con­sen­sual.

Col­lege lawyer Carolyn Sil­ver told the dis­ci­plinary hear­ing that the al­leged vic­tim was un­will­ing to re­count the story a third time.

“The process of tes­ti­fy­ing has been gru­elling and has had a sig­nif­i­cant detri­men­tal im­pact on Ms. X,” Sil­ver said, ac­cord­ing to hear­ing records pro­vided by the col­lege. “Ms. X is sim­ply not able to sub­ject her­self to the psy­cho­log­i­cal, emo­tional and phys­i­cal harm of an­other hear­ing.”

The col­lege had the op­tion to serve a sum­mons on Ms. X in or­der to com­pel her to tes­tify, but has opted not to so, Sil­ver added.

The in­ci­dent at the heart of both the crim­i­nal trial and dis­ci­plinary pro­ceed­ings took place on Feb. 13, 2011, when the two doc­tors and the med­i­cal stu­dent went out for a night of drink­ing and danc­ing.

At the 2014 trial, Jus­tice Julie Thor­burn voiced doubt as to the pros­e­cu­tion’s ver­sion of the events that un­folded that night.

“There is an air of re­al­ity to the ac­cused’s claim that they had an hon­est but mis­taken be­lief that (the woman) con­sented to the sex­ual en­counter,” Thor­burn said.

The col­lege said Chauhan has not been prac­tis­ing medicine since his li­cence ex­pired in 2011.

Kay­i­lasanathan re­mains in prac­tice with­out con­di­tions de­spite the fact that he is fac­ing an­other dis­ci­plinary hear­ing be­fore the col­lege later this year.

He stands ac­cused of sex­u­ally abus­ing a pa­tient in his care.


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