A “sex pest” medic has been jailed for groping colleagues at the hospital where he worked as a respected anaesthetist.
Dr Niaz Ahmed was known as “always the octopus, hands all over the place” by sickened staff who he made repeated lewd comments to at the hospital.
The 55-year-old’s shocking behaviour included viewing women patients’ genital areas as they recovered from surgery and giving saucy underwear to a stunned young colleague.
Newcastle Crown Court heard the “highly skilled” 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 convicted him of two indecent assault charges on his co-workers.
Judge Simon Hickey jailed Ahmed, of Broadlands, Cleadon, for 18 months and said he must sign the sex offenders register for ten years.
Judge Hickey said Ahmed had shown “no remorse” for his behaviour, which he tried to pass off as “social clumsiness”.
The judge told him: “These women expected, and could expect, to be treated not only with respect and courtesy but as professionals in their own right.
“You were expected not to touch them in any way, particularly a sexual way.
“The evidence in the case revealed your inappropriate behaviour towards women in general in the hospital.
“The staff spoke in terms of you leaving your post as an anaesthetist and viewing the private, genital, areas of women when they were unconscious.
“Others speak of you giving inappropriate underwear to one young colleague, extremely embarrassing her.
“Others speak of suggestive behaviour and comments.
“The evidence was overwhelming in terms of what you were doing and the boundaries you were stepping over.
“You used your authority over those two victims to commit these offences.
“This was not social clumsiness, this was a man who knew he was stepping over a clear line.”
Ahmed, who was suspended from medical practice at a tribunal earlier this year for groping a colleague who was treating him after an accident, was cleared of three similar charges.
The GMC ruled Ahmed, who no longer works at the hospital, could continue to practice, under strict conditions, after the recent convictions.
Proscutor Michael Hodson told the court during the trial 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 victim was targeted 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 Ahmed accepted it was inappropriate to touch colleagues 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 girls at a fireworks display in South Shields.
The youngsters claimed Ahmed had groped them after boasting about the size of his manhood and complaining about his sex life with his wife.
Tom Moran, defending, said Ahmed has had an offer of work out of the area and added: “He is highly regarded for his professional abilities.”