Doctor gets 7 years for sex attacks

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The Independent Online
A HARLEY STREET doctor was jailed for seven years yesterday for raping two women after spiking their drinks and indecently assaulting two others during job interviews at his surgery.

Thomas Courtney, 46, is believed to have raped or assaulted at least seven other women, police revealed last night. It also emerged that Courtney, of Cricklewood, north-west London, ran an Aids foundation whose finances are being investigated by the Charity Commission.

The unanimous verdicts by the jury of eight men and four women were reached after four hours of deliberations. One victim, a 17-year-old, was in court.

The Recorder of London, Judge Lawrence Verney, told Courtney: 'You took advantage of your position as a doctor. He said of the two women assaulted: 'They thought they could trust a doctor, and how wrong they were.' He sentenced Courtney to seven years on each rape charge and four years for each assault charge, all sentences to run concurrently.

The doctor had set himself up as a pioneer in working with women who had been victims of sex abuse, drug addiction and Aids problems, but without the necessary qualifications.

The women had gone to see him for social reasons or to seek employment. One woke up after drinking a sip of champagne to find herself naked in the shower with Courtney.

He told another that the vagina was 'the entrance to a whole new wonderful world' and offered her a room in exchange for sex three times a day. This victim, who had visited him to ask for advice about work, found herself having sex with him after being given a glass of wine.

Two women were told to strip and were then assaulted with vibrators.

David Radcliffe told the judge in mitigation that Courtney was not a 'serial sex beast' but 'a chancer who is willing to chance his arm in a sexual situation'.