Ian Tomlinson pathologist ‘unfit to practice’

by Peter Wozniak

The pathologist who examined the body of Ian Tomlinson at the G20 protests in 2009 has been found guilty of misconduct by the General Medical Council (GMC).

Dr Freddy Patel was deemed unfit as a practitioner by a GMC panel looking into three deaths unrelated to that of Mr Tomlinson.

The panel investigated Dr Patel’s conduct in examining the bodies of a woman, a five-year-old girl and a baby in separate incidents over the course of three years from 2002 to 2005.
The pathologist altered his conclusions in the case of the woman after a second post mortem was conducted a month after her death.

According to Dr Patel, he did so to “satisfy” the woman’s family.

Richard Davies, the chairman of the panel said: “The panel is not satisfied that there is no risk of the relevant conduct being repeated.”

He added that people in Dr Patel’s position “must not set aside their professional judgement for any of the parties involved during or after a post-mortem examination for reasons of expediency or anything else”.

The panel determined that he had brought his profession into disrepute by his actions, and will decide what sanctions it wishes to pursue on Wednesday.

Dr Patel conducted the first post-mortem following the death of Mr Tomlinson at the G20 protests last year.

His work was central to the decision not to pursue charges against the police officer who hit Mr Tomlinson and threw him to the ground.

Two pathologists later concluded that Mr Tomlinson had died of internal bleeding as a result of blunt force trauma and cirrhosis of the liver, but the contradiction between their findings and those of Dr Patel meant there were no charges.