Doctor who killed can practise again

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A doctor jailed after stabbing her husband's mistress to death in a frenzied attack was given permission yesterday to resume her career when she comes out of prison. Julia Wright, 48, a mother of four, stabbed love rival Fiona Wood 17 times in the face and chest with a kitchen devil knife before slashing her face another 18 times.

Wright flew into an uncontrolled rage after discovering married Mrs Wood, who had two children, was having an affair with her doctor husband Jeremy. She was a woman who had loved "not wisely but too well", the General Medical Council's professional conduct committee heard.

Wright was sentenced in December 1994 to four years imprisonment after she pleaded guilty at the Old Bailey to manslaughter on the grounds of diminished responsibility. She bowed her head as Mr Paul Honigmann, counsel for the GMC, said: " This is a story as sad as any I have have ever had to present to this committee."

After the killing Wright, covered in blood, drove to the Nuffield Hospital where her anaesthetist doctor husband Jeremy was working and confessed what she had done. She later told police: " I hit her, then I hit her, then I hit her, that evil and wicked woman."

Wright's counsel Dr Simon Taylor, QC, said: "She feels considerable remorse and very sad that her actions have led to disrepute for her profession. She is from a family whose tradition is medical. She feels a doctor in her bones."

Wright, of Woking, Surrey, has not practised medicine for 16 years, having given it up to raise her children, now aged 16, 14, 10 and 8. But she was anxious to be allowed to resume her career when she comes out of prison, possibly later this year.

Committee chairman Sir Donald Irvine said: " Your registration will be suspended for 12 months. Should you consider a return to medical practice you should use your time to prepare a programme of rehabilitation and retraining."