‘Child porn’ doc: Limits imposed: Dr Darryl Watts

By This is Bristol  |  Posted: October 28, 2008

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dr darryl watts

A psychiatrist who surfed the web for child pornography has been told he can only treat adults for the next 18 months. Dr Darryl Watts, 45, was suspended from practice for a year in April 2004 after he used the internet for up to 30 hours a week to look at obscene pictures of youngsters.

The General Medical Council (GMC) heard how the doctor from Hereford started his surfing habit after he was signed off work with depression while working at a large practice in Bristol.

Before his conviction, Watts had been based at Blackberry Hill Hospital, Fishponds, looking after adult NHS patients.

Watts, who qualified in Bristol in 1984, moved with his long-term partner to Hereford and joined Hereford primary care trust in January 2003, three months before his arrest.

Police raided his home as part of Operation Ricochet and seized his computer, which contained an image of a naked girl aged between five and seven in a sexual pose.

Watts was fined £1,500 by Hereford magistrates in August 2003 after admitting possession of an indecent photograph of a child under the age of 16. He was also ordered to register as a sex offender for five years and his computer was destroyed.

In October 2006, he was allowed to carry on working, provided he only treated adults.

He was removed from the sex offenders’ register in August this year and has not re-offended for three years.

But GMC panel chairman Ralph Bergmann this week said restrictions were still necessary because Watts still needed to demonstrate a further period of non-offending without the controls of the sex offenders’ register.

He said: “In your evidence you explained you viewed child pornography at a time when you were feeling depressed and were under considerable distress.

“While you stated in evidence that you regret what you have done, this panel is not convinced that you have the necessary level of insight into your offending behaviour and its consequences,” said Mr Bergmann.

“In addition, the panel has borne in mind that you were convicted of a very serious offence.

“This panel takes a serious view of the nature of this conviction and its implications for the maintenance of public trust and confidence in the medical profession.

“The panel notes that your name was only removed from the Sex Offenders’ Register as recently as August 2008.”

Placing restrictions on his registration for a further 18 months, Mr Bergmann told Watts he must follow his psychiatrist’s advice against over-working as he started a part-time consultancy job with Gwent Healthcare NHS trust in Newport in December.

As part of his new restrictions, Watts is only allowed to work with adults. The doctor is also only allowed to carry out four NHS sessions a week.

He must also notify his employers, or any future employers, of the restrictions on his practice.

Watts will have to return to the GMC in 18 months, when a conduct committee will decide whether further restrictions should be imposed.

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Psychiatrist who surfed web looking for child porn and violence free to work with children again: Dr Darryl Watts

By Daily Mail Reporter

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1272059/Psychiatrist-surfed-web-looking-child-porn-violence-free-work-children-again.html#ixzz3OotmJ1Qz

dr darryl watts

A psychiatrist who surfed the web to look at depraved pictures of youngsters is free to work with children again.

Dr Darryl Watts blamed stress and depression after he spent up to 30 hours a week on the internet looking at images of violence and indecent pictures of young girls.

In April 2003 police raided his home and seized Watts’ computer which contained an image of a naked girl aged between five and seven years old in sexual poses.

Watts was fined £1,500 by Hereford Magistrates after admitting possession of an indecent photograph of a child under the age of 16.

He was also ordered to register as a sex offender for five years and his computer was destroyed.

Watts was suspended for a year by the GMC and later banned from working with children.

But the Hereford-based doctor has successfully appealed for the restrictions to be lifted.

He blamed the stress of a 70,000-patient workload at the Blackberry Hill Hospital, Bristol, for his behaviour.

Watts told the hearing: ‘I began to get into a frame of mind where I began to hate my failings and my shortcomings.

‘I began to get very negative thoughts about myself and dislike myself significantly.

‘When I had time off work because I was not coping I became more introverted.

‘At that time I started to use the internet and I used it to look at things that were horrible images.

‘That seemed to validate what I was feeling in here, in myself. I looked at things to do with suicide and I looked at horrible images of people being hurt or maimed, car crashes, bombings. I did see something to do with Lady Diana.

‘These images were in some way an external representation of what I was feeling inside. Along with the looking at some images of child pornography as well.’

When asked if the child images were sexual he said ‘certainly not.’

In January 2003 Watts moved from the Bristol hospital to a Hereford clinic with his partner Jackie Valentine.

He was caught in Operation Ricochet run by Avon and Somerset Constabulary to combat child porn on the internet and one stored image was found on his computer.

Watts added: ‘I’m so, so sorry I have done it. It won’t happen again. What I did supports the procurement of these sorts of pictures.’

The doctor now works part time at a clinic in Newport as well as running a bed and breakfast in Harewood End, Herefordshire, with his partner.

He spends his spare time cleaning toilets and making beds, he said.

The GMC panel agreed Watts, of Handley Cross House, Harewood End, Herefordshire, could now practice again without restriction.

His governing body found the doctor’s fitness to practise was no longer impaired.

GMC chairman Dr Timothy Ross said: ‘The panel accepts that you now have clear insight into the effects of your behaviour on yourself, your patients, the profession and on victims of abuse.

‘The testimonial evidence is that you have retained the confidence of your professional colleagues and that your clinical competence is not in doubt.

‘The panel is confident that a fair-minded member of the public, if in full possession of the facts would not conclude that it is necessary in the public interest to continue to restrict your registration.

‘The medical evidence indicates that there are no concerns regarding your health and also the reports from your workplace supervisors confirm that you continue to work as a competent and caring doctor, working solely in adult psychiatry, who commands the confidence of his professional colleagues.

‘Talking all factors into account, the panel has determined that your fitness to practise is not now impaired.

‘Having reached that conclusion, the panel hereby revokes the current order of conditions with immediate effect.’

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