UK & World News
Aussie Doctor Jailed Over Hep C Infections
A former Australian doctor has been jailed for up to 14 years after he infected 55 women with Hepatitis C.
James Latham Peters was working as an anaesthetist at a Melbourne abortion clinic when he transferred the disease to patients.
The Australian newspaper reported that 63-year-old Peters passed on the disease by injecting himself with syringes of fentanyl before administering the drug to the patients.
Peters had an addiction to fentanyl, which was used in procedures at the abortion clinic.
Peters was diagnosed with Hepatitis C in 1997, the same year he was suspended for drug abuse, although he was later allowed to return to work.
He was supposed to be under supervision while he worked.
Victoria's Supreme Court Justice Terry Forrest sentenced Peters to 14 years in prison.
He will serve a minimum of 10 years before becoming eligible for parole.
Justice Forrest described his behaviour as "truly reprehensible".
"The physical damage caused by your conduct and the associated emotional harm cannot adequately be described by me in words," he said.
Speaking after Peters' sentencing, Detective Paul Robotham said: "The sentence handed down today should serve as a warning to all, especially those in the health industry that any abuse of community trust will be thoroughly investigated."