Sunday, March 12, 2017

Sex-assault charges dating back 30 years brought against MD


Sex-assault charges dating back 30 years brought against MD


A Toronto doctor who faced three counts of sexual assault in November now faces more than 50 charges relating to his examinations of female patients dating back more than 30 years.

Image result for Bill Tai-pang Wong

Toronto police charged Bill Tai-pang Wong yesterday with 43 counts of sexual assault, nine counts of indecent assault and one count of sexual exploitation.
The charges stem from incidents alleged to have occurred between January, 1973, and October, 2004. The alleged victims ranged from 14 years old to 58 at the time of the incidents complained of.
Police had charged Dr. Wong with three counts of sexual assault on Nov. 12. At that time, they asked any other patients who felt they had been subjects of inappropriate examinations to come forward.
Fifty-three people have contacted police since that appeal, bringing the total number of charges to 56. Detective Glenn Gray said the public plea made many patients realize that others had experienced the same problems they had.
Det. Gray said there are still more people out there with complaints against Dr. Wong, but they have been hesitant to come forward.
Det. Gray said the police began to investigate when a patient contacted them last April.
The criminal charges are not the only complaints Dr. Wong faces. The College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario notified him two weeks ago that it will hold a hearing on allegations he sexually abused a patient and breached the terms of his medical licence.
Specific restrictions were placed on his licence after he pleaded guilty to allegations of professional misconduct at a college hearing in 2001. In the statement of agreed facts filed in 2001 with the college's disciplinary committee, three women complained of inappropriate pelvic examinations.
Each of them was asked to undress in front of Dr. Wong, and the examinations included clitoral contact which was "in the minds of the complainants unusual and inappropriate."
As a result of the hearing, Dr. Wong's licence was temporarily suspended, and when he resumed practising he was barred from seeing female patients unless there was a third adult in the room. He had to display a sign in his office advising patients of that condition.
The sign was up yesterday at the Gerrard Medical Clinic, one of his two offices. But some of the new allegations brought to the college say he had examined women since the restriction was imposed in 2001 without a third party present.
The notice of hearing sent to Dr. Wong by the college also includes complaints from a patient alleging he touched her clitoris, placed his mouth on her breast and directed her to "touch and/or stroke his penis."
Dr. Wong was disciplined by the college in 2003 for not disclosing that he was undergoing a complaint or disciplinary procedure while applying to be reappointed to the medical staff of St. Michael's Hospital in 1999, 2000 and 2001.
The college's actions are not based on the police investigation but on information brought to it by Dr. Wong's patients, said Kathryn Clarke, a senior communications officer with the college. The college can make decisions only on the basis of what is brought to its disciplinary committee, not on information from the police.
Ms. Clarke said the criminal proceedings are not linked to the college's hearing. But she noted that if Dr. Wong is convicted of any charges, the college could charge him with being convicted of an offence relevant to his suitability to practise medicine.
Ms. Clarke could not say whether the college had informed police in 2001 of the allegations against Dr. Wong, but noted that legislation allows the college to contact the police and that it has done so before.
Ms. Clarke said it will be a matter of months before the college holds the hearing. If it finds Dr. Wong guilty of sexual impropriety, the consequence is a mandatory revocation of his licence that cannot be appealed for five years.
Dr. Wong appeared at College Park courts yesterday regarding the new criminal charges and was released.