The Prominent Palmerstonian is in the news again today - indirectly. Have a read of this, from Stuff:
A doctor has been suspended from practising for nine months after pleading guilty to possessing images of child sex abuse.
The doctor, whose name is suppressed, was sentenced to four months' home detention after admitting 25 charges of possessing objectionable material and one charge of distributing an objectionable publication.
The material was found on the doctor's computer and an external hard drive which contained over 400,000 files, 290,000 of which related to images of young girls in explicit sexual poses.
In a decision released by the Health Practitioners Disciplinary Tribunal today, the doctor had his registration suspended for nine months from the date of the hearing - July 26, 2010.
The tribunal also imposed several conditions for three years after the suspension ended, including that he comply with ongoing counselling, ongoing oversight by the health committee of the Medical Council, and that he undergo a psychiatric assessment confirming fitness to practise before he was re-registered. He was also ordered to pay $6000 costs.
How convenient for the Health Practitioners Disciplinary Tribunal that court-ordered suppression was in place for the Prominent Palmerstonian; it saved the good doctors the dilemma as to whether or not to name and shame one of their own. In all honesty, we doubt whether they would have named the Prominent Palmerstonian, but that's academic; WhaleOil did some time ago, and frankly we agree with him; the community deserved to know.
In the meantime, the Prominent Palmerstonian has served his sentence of home detention, and after 26 April 2011, he will again be able to apply to practice medicine. The community where he practises will still be none the wiser. We don't think that's right.