A consultant surgeon carried out two operations on private patients when he should have been tied to NHS duties, a tribunal was told yesterday.

The General Medical Council's disciplinary committee heard that Michael Gray, 42, from Ashford, Kent performed the operations in November 1999 while working as an on-duty surgeon for East Kent Hospitals NHS Trust.

In the first, he was said to have asked members of an NHS team to help him remove a large bowel tumour. In the second, it was said he caused two accidental tears to a patient's small bowel, which were subsequently repaired in surgery. Then another hole was found. The patient later died from respiratory problems and other complications.

The hearing continues.