Welcome to the new Independent website. We hope you enjoy it and we value your feedback. Please contact us here.

Poison bid doctor to be struck off

A doctor who tried to poison his lover in an attempt to abort her baby will be struck off the medical register, the General Medical Council said today.

Edward Erin, who was jailed for six years in 2009, has "not demonstrated any insight into the gravity of his actions", a disciplinary panel found.

He tried to give Bella Prowse miscarriage-inducing drugs by grinding up tablets and spiking a Starbucks coffee and then a bottle of orange juice in 2008.

But his lover was suspicious and took the drinks to police. She spent her pregnancy not knowing if her unborn baby had been harmed by drugs she had unwittingly taken.

Today the GMC said: "The panel noted that this case is concerned with grave breaches of good medical practice. It is concerned that Dr Erin's offences were premeditated acts, using his medical skills and knowledge, to attempt to cause serious harm to others.

"As a doctor, he knew or should have known that Methotrexate in particular could cause long-term harm to his intended victim and her unborn child. The panel considers that Dr Erin has never acknowledged fault in this case and has shown no remorse for his actions and the panel has received no evidence to suggest he has now gained insight into the gravity of his actions."

It found that his behaviour was "utterly unacceptable and is fundamentally incompatible with his remaining a registered medical practitioner".

The medic was a chest consultant at St Mary's Hospital in Paddington, west London, when Miss Prowse, who worked there as a secretary, became the latest in a series of affairs.

They had a brief relationship after a Christmas party, but six weeks later, she found she was pregnant and refused to have an abortion.

Despite the attempted poisoning she later gave birth to a healthy boy, Ernie.