By BBC News - 01.07.2023 - [UK] - [Salman Siddiqi] A doctor has been jailed for more than two years after admitting child sex offences.
Salman Siddiqi, 44, was arrested after arranging to meet who he thought was a 14-year-old boy on the grounds of the Kent hospital where he worked. Police inquiries found he sent explicit images of himself prior to the meeting.
Siddiqi previously received a caution for indecent exposure, and the East Kent NHS Hospitals Trust admitted there were "missed opportunities".
In January, Siddiqi, of Hornchurch, east London, initiated a conversation with an online user whose profile was part of a fictitious account. Kent Police said the conversations were "clearly sexual in nature" and included messages relating to "his desires to abuse a child".
Siddiqi knew the age of the child when he arranged to meet them on the grounds of the Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother hospital in Margate during the early hours of 8 January, police said. He was arrested at the scene.
The following day, Siddiqi pleaded guilty at Folkestone Magistrates Court to attempting to engage in sexual communication with a child and attempting to arrange or facilitate the commission of a child for a sexual offence.
On Friday, he was jailed for two years and four months at Canterbury Crown Court. He was also made subject of a sexual harm prevention order and added to the sex offenders register.
Rebecca Martin, chief medical officer at East Kent Hospitals University NHS Foundation Trust, said Siddiqi was immediately reported to the General Medical Council following the incident.
"Our review did not identify any patient involvement or failures in our processes that would have directly prevented this criminal offence," Ms Martin said.
She added: "There were missed opportunities to identify his previous caution and we have taken steps to ensure that it cannot happen again."
An NHS spokesperson confirmed the "previous caution" related to the arrest of Siddiqi for indecent exposure at a park in London in June 2019.
Det Con Deniz Aslan, of Kent Police's paedophile online investigation team, said: "Siddiqi made it explicitly clear that he intended to commit very serious sexual offences involving a young child and the graphic detail he included in his messages was hugely concerning.
"It is clear Siddiqi is a risk to the public, and he now faces the consequences of his abhorrent desires."
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