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Australia denies compensation to India-born doctor

Posted on Feb 07 2014 | IANS

Sydney, Feb 7 : The government of the Australian state of Queensland has said it will not approve any compensation request by India-born doctor Jayant Patel for the time he spent in jail.

The former surgeon at Bundaberg Base Hospital in the Australian state of Queensland, was last year convicted of fraud and sentenced to two years in prison but he walked free due to the time he had already spent in custody for earlier convictions that were subsequently overturned by a high court.

Patel was charged with causing grievous bodily harm to Ian Rodney Vowles, 66, by unnecessarily removing his colon and rectum in 2004.

Jarrod Bleijie, attorney-general of Queensland, said that Patel may seek damages.

"I have not received anything in writing in respect to that," ABC News quoted Bleijie as saying.

"As I understand it, Patel has indicated that he will be writing to the government wanting compensation. There will be no compensation, there will be no entertainment of the idea of compensation," Bleijie added.

"It's an insult to Queenslanders, it's an insult to Bundaberg residents," he said.

The Jamnagar, Gujarat-born Patel had a controversial tenure in the hospital from 2003 to early 2005, during which over 80 deaths were linked to him and 30 patients died in his care.

After that, he left for Portland, Oregon, in the US.

He was, however, extradited to Australia in 2008 to face trial.

Later, after his aquittal, he returned to the US.

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