Cosmetic surgeon Cesedio Colagrande has won his appeal over a Health Ombudsman ruling he could not have contact with female patients.
Cosmetic surgeon Cesedio Colagrande has won his appeal over a Health Ombudsman ruling he could not have contact with female patients.

Sex assault plastic surgeon 'no predator' says judge

A COSMETIC surgeon convicted of sexually assaulting a client by slapping her buttocks and saying he wanted to 'f*** now' can see patients again because he isn't considered a "sexual predator".

Cesidio Colagrande was found guilty in 2015 of sexually assaulting a 24-year-old stripper during a consultation. He was given a n 18-month suspended sentence and then banned by the Health Ombudsman for seeing female patients.

But the Queensland Civil and Administrative Tribunal has altered the ban to allow him to once again see females - as long as he has a chaperone.

Dr Colagrande, 48, complained to the Tribunal the ban meant he effectively couldn't continue to work in his lucrative practice.

He continues to deny the allegations but accepted his conviction could create " a reasonable belief" of risk and argued a chaperone would remove that risk.

He initially proposed people employed by him, such as receptionists or nurses, could act as chaperones. After concern was raised by the Ombudsman he altered his proposal to being agency nurses not directly employed by him.

Lawyers for the Health Ombudsman argued Dr Colagrande had a history of dishonesty, relating to a previous suspension when he was found to have falsified his CV, which meant a chaperone would be ineffective.

The false claims in his CV, which were made more than a decade ago in the UK, were viewed at the time as a "sophisticated and deliberate act of dishonesty" but ultimately did not patients at risk.

The tribunal was told by Peter Davis QC, on behalf of Dr Colagrande, that since the 2015 assault there had been no suggestion Dr Colagrande had been involved in an assault since then and the allegation was of a "spontaneous assault of a patient in a consultation room".

Judge Suzanne Sheridan, deputy president of the tribunal, agreed.

"This is not a case where it is suggested that the practitioner is a sexual predator or has shown any tendency towards that type of conduct. The Tribunal is satisfied that, with a properly framed set of chaperone conditions, public health and safety will be protected by the imposition conditions less onerous than the present one."

She said: "It is sufficient to say that the conditions proposed are in the Tribunal's view

reasonable and sufficient for the protection of the public."

Colagrande's trial heard the surgeon hugged the woman, grabbing and slapping her buttocks, before whispering to her he wanted to "f*** and f*** now".

Colagrande then pressed his crotch into the woman's groin despite her telling the surgeon to stop before the woman left the clinic.

Judge David Kent QC said Colagrande's assault, while brief and unplanned, was a serious breach of the trust a patient places in a medical professional. "She was your patient ... and in circumstances where she should have been safe," Judge Kent told the court.

"I do regard it as a serious offence and a serious breach of trust."

Mr Davis had suggested to the court during his closing submission on Friday that the woman, a stripper and nude model, had a "golden opportunity to lie if she wants to".

Mr Davis said the woman had fabricated the complaint after being denied a refund or free surgery for her dissatisfaction following breast enhancement surgery Colagrande performed on her in 2014.

The court heard the 24-year-old woman was determined to acquire "porn star tits" and was unhappy with the size of implants used by Colagrande.

Prosecutor Melissa Wilson disagreed with Mr Davis' claims and told the court Colagrande had committed "uninvited sexual abuse against his patient". She added Colagrande had shown no remorse and said the age disparity between the pair should be another factor to be considered in sentencing.

News Corp Australia

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