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Suffolk-based psychiatrist suspended over sexual misconduct

PUBLISHED: 17:44 07 November 2019 | UPDATED: 17:47 07 November 2019

Dr James Ugbo, pictured with his wife Patience Picture: CAVENDISH PRESS (MANCHESTER) LTD

Dr James Ugbo, pictured with his wife Patience Picture: CAVENDISH PRESS (MANCHESTER) LTD

Cavendish Press (Manchester) LTD

A psychiatrist working at the Norfolk and Suffolk Foundation Trust (NSFT) has been suspended after a tribunal found his behaviour amounted to misconduct.

Dr James Ugbo behaved in an inappropriate and sexually motivated way, without consent, towards four female colleagues while working at a mental health hospital in Havant near Portsmouth, a Medical Practitioners Tribunal Service (MPTS) panel concluded today.

The 57-year-old was given a six month suspension order at a hearing in Manchester, after his current fitness to practise was found to be impaired. A review meeting will take place in due course.

A report of the hearing states: "The tribunal has found Dr Ugbo's conduct in respect of colleagues A, B, C and E to be without consent, inappropriate and sexually motivated.

"The sexually motivated conduct involved unwelcome, flirtatious comments and unnecessary and unwanted physical contact.

"The tribunal found that this behaviour culminated in Dr Ugbo kissing Colleague C on the lips while at work and attempting to put his tongue in Colleague A's mouth while on a night out.

"All of the complainants in this case were Dr Ugbo's female colleagues. In behaving this way, Dr Ugbo had breached their trust.

It adds: "Even though some of the conduct was at the lower end of the spectrum, the tribunal considered Dr Ugbo's conduct in respect of each colleague to be a pattern of behaviour which amounts to serious misconduct."

However, the panel did note the following mitigating factors, including Dr Ugbo's previous good character, positive testimonials relating to Dr Ugbo's clinical competence, the majority of his conduct being at the lower end of the spectrum of sexual misconduct, and no repetition of the misconduct.

Up until the misconduct hearing, which began on October 21, the 57-year-old is understood to have been working in NSFT's Coastal Integrated Delivery Team (IDT), including at Walker Close in Ipswich.

Bosses confirmed he has been working for the trust for about two years as a locum in east Suffolk.

Dr Ugbo's alleged misconduct was said to have taken place at Elmleigh Hospital between 2015 and 2017.

Representatives for NSFT have been contacted for further comment.

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