Tagged: solicitor

Sexual Assults On jobseekers in 1970s & 80s

A doctor who carried out medical assessments on North-East job seekers would have faced sex assault charges had he still been alive, police have told his victims.


Hundreds of young people were made to strip and submit to intimate medical examination by Dr Gordon Bates during the 70s and 80s.


Dr Bates, who worked from home in Newcastle, carried out medical assessments for a public and private sector companies, including Barclays Bank.


But instead of giving them a general check-up, he ordered them to remove their clothes and carried out unnecessary intimate examinations.


Barclays said last night that it had informed police as soon as the allegations came to light last year.


Dr Bates was not an employee of Barclays. At the time, he was used by a number of other organisations for pre-employment medical assessments which took place at his home surgery in Fenham, Newcastle.


The Northern Echo understands that he also provided services to a Government agency.


Many victims hid their suffering for decades until a police investigation confirmed what they had always known.


Although many originally came from the Tyneside area police say they have been contacted by people from across the region, including County Durham.


Detectives found the medic, who died in 2009, aged 73, made parents wait outside so he could see the young patients alone at his examination rooms.


Northumbria Police interviewed more than 150 people who were sent to the doctor during a three-month investigation. Detectives acknowledge that there may be even more.


Officers have now written to 48 of victims to say that if Dr Bates had still been alive “there would be sufficient evidence to mount a prosecution” for sexual assault.



The others have been told that, while there would not have been enough evidence to prosecute under the law then in force, the doctor’s behaviour could have been seen as professional misconduct and may have been referred to the General Medical Council.


A spokesman for Northumbria Police said: “We can confirm that Northumbria Police received a number of allegations of sexual assault dating back to the 1970s and 1980s, made against a man who is now deceased.


“The allegations related to pre-employment medical examinations carried out on behalf of Barclays Bank.


“All of the allegations have been thoroughly investigated by specialist officers.


“Forty-eight of the allegations have been recorded as criminal acts. 


“All of the complainants have been informed of the outcome of the investigation.


“Northumbria Police worked closely with Barclays Bank throughout the enquiry and any further allegations which may come to light will be fully investigated.”


Solicitor Chris Shaw, who is acting for dozens of people sent to the GP, plans to bring legal action against Barclays.


Mr Shaw, whose firm Shaw and Co Solicitors is based in Newcastle, said many victims were still having difficulty coming to terms with what happened. Some have not even told their partners.


He said: “These are otherwise confident, competent people. Most of them have been professionally successful and are now running their own businesses.


“At the time they were just young naive people. If you think back 30 years to how things were then, doctors were absolutely implicitly trusted. They didn’t have the life experience to know this was wrong.”


A spokesman for Barclays said: “Last year Barclays became aware of an allegation about a GP who conducted pre-employment medicals in the late 1970s and early 1980s.


“The information was immediately shared with the Northumbria Police, who have investigated the allegations.


“Barclays has done all it can to help the police enquiry and to support employees involved in this sensitive investigation.”

Source – Northern Echo,  10 March 2014

More Crime Resulting From Sanctions

A man went on a shoplifting spree after a foreign trip in search of work turned sour and he returned to Sunderland empty handed and in debt.


Sunderland magistrates were told how Ernest Bulmer Jenkins headed to Sweden last year hoping to find a job, but came home after a month to find his benefits had been stopped.

Because he had not been in touch with the authorities he was left with no income for seven months and was forced to borrow money to survive.

The 30-year-old has now been handed a three-month suspended prison sentence after turning to crime to repay his debts.

Prosecutor Jeanette Smith said Jenkins, , took £100-worth perfume from Debenhams on October 21.

He was arrested and released on bail, but on December 17, Jenkins pilfered £22.95 of meat from Hendon’s HJ Foodstores. Having been bailed again, he and two others went into Sainsbury’s in Silksworth Lane, on January 6, and took £410 of drinks.

None of the items were recovered, Mrs Smith added.

Bulmer admitted three counts of theft and asked for another three – relating to the theft of £285 from Boots – to be taken into consideration.

“Around eight or nine months ago, Mr Jenkins went to Sweden to stay with family members,” his solicitor Heather Bolton said.

“He was there for four weeks, but returned to Sunderland because he was unable to find work.

“He was sanctioned for not going to the benefits agency for that four weeks, the period when he was away. For seven or so months he’s had no income whatsoever.

“He was borrowing money from friends and acquaintances. He didn’t borrow from loan sharks, but he did have some pressure on him to repay his debt.”

The bench suspended the jail sentence for 12 months, and told Jenkins to carry out 100 hours of unpaid work. and he was told to pay  £322.95 in compensation, due to his limited means.

Source – Sunderland Echo   11 Feb 2014