Anaesthetist jailed after sexually assaulting child

An anaesthetist who sexually assaulted a young girl who was in hospital for an operation and took intimate pictures of patients has been jailed for eight years.

Edward Finn, 36, worked as a doctor across a number of hospitals in Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire.

His offending was uncovered when a family member found an iPad they had intended to hand to a child, but discovered images of naked children.

Sentencing him on Friday, a judge described Finn as a "predatory paedophile".

Nottingham Crown Court heard after further devices were also found to have indecent images on them, the police were called and the defendant, from Cotgrave in Nottinghamshire, was arrested nearby.

'Life ripped apart'

During a police investigation, some of the images were found to relate to the genitals of an unidentified woman who was being treated at the Royal Derby Hospital, with further images showing the sexual assault of a young girl who was at the King's Mill Hospital in Nottinghamshire for an operation.

The court heard there were nearly 4,000 indecent images of children - aged between 12 months and 14 years - uncovered, including 179 in the most serious category, as well as voyeuristic images of women.

In victim impact statements read out in court, one family member of the defendant said their life "has been ripped apart", while a parent of one of the victims said they "still struggle to come to terms with the nature of these crimes against our daughter".

Finn pleaded guilty to one count of sexual assault of a child under 13, three counts of making indecent photographs of children, three counts of taking indecent photographs of children, and two counts of voyeurism.

Sentencing, Judge Michael Auty KC said Finn's offending "will resonate far beyond the misery" inflicted on the victims and their families, and would have repercussions for other doctors.

"People are understandably fearful in medical situations, and what you have done is going to irreparably damage, I suspect, the confidence and trust that society must inevitably place in the medical profession," he said.

"It's hard to imagine someone who has fallen so far and thrown away so much."

Describing the images of the woman in hospital in Derby, the judge said: "I find it difficult to imagine a more gross breach of trust in a doctor than this."

He also referred to the impact of the assault on the girl at King's Mill Hospital on her parents.

"Imagine the level of betrayal they must feel," he told the defendant.

"Their daughter had been entrusted to the care of a predatory paedophile."

'Abused his position'

On top of his sentence, Finn must also serve four years on extended licence, will be on the sex offenders register for life, and will be subject to a lifetime sexual harm prevention order.

Following the sentencing, Dr Simon Roe, acting medical director of Sherwood Forest Hospitals NHS Trust, which runs King's Mill Hospital, offered an "unreserved apology" to the girl and her family.

"Since the moment this incident was brought to our attention as part of the police investigation, we have supported Nottinghamshire Police and have conducted our own robust review to understand how anyone could breach the strict measures that are in place to protect patients," he said.

"Ultimately, only Edward Finn knows how he managed to commit these abhorrent crimes that I am clear represent the ultimate betrayal of trust - not only to the victim in his care and their family, but also to the thousands of colleagues who work tirelessly to provide the best possible care across our NHS."

Dr Gis Robinson, executive chief medical officer for University Hospitals of Derby and Burton NHS Foundation Trust, which runs Royal Derby Hospital, said: "We are appalled that Finn abused his position in this way on our premises.

"We have robust safeguarding procedures to protect patients and staff, and want to reassure anyone attending our hospitals that they are able to ask for a chaperone - whether a family member, friend or another member of staff - to accompany them for any appointment should they wish."

Nottingham University Hospitals (NUH) said Finn was suspended as soon as the initial allegations were made and that he no longer works for the trust.

Chief executive Anthony May said: "While we know these offences did not involve NUH patients, we have worked closely with police throughout their investigation.

"Our focus now is to care for those colleagues who have felt the effects of this case.

“The nature of the crimes committed by Edward Finn have left us feeling shocked and saddened. Our thoughts are with the victims of these offences and their families."

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