Indian-origin man fined for impersonating a doctor in AustraliaApril 04, 2017 04:35
An Indian-origin man has been accused of impersonating a British-Indian doctor and working in several hospitals for more than a decade in Australia.
41-year-old Shyam Acharya, who identified himself as Sarang Chitale, a rheumatologist in the United Kingdom, came to Australia in 2003 and worked with the New South Wales Health (NSW).
Acharya was fined with a maximum penalty of 30,000 dollars on Monday, for the “most serious level” offense.
Sarang Chitale, who works at Leigh Infirmary near Manchester, was “shocked” after he came to know that Acharya has stolen his identity.
Acharya managed to gain citizenship, an Australian passport and property, all in the name of Sarang Chitale. Acharya worked for NSW Health as a junior doctor from 2003 to May 2014 at four different hospitals.
Magistrate Jennifer Atkinson of Downing Centre Local Court in Sydney said that the offense was one of the “most serious level and warranted the maximum penalty of 30,000 dollars fine.” Atkinson also ordered him to pay the prosecution costs, which is more than 22,000 dollars.
Acharya allegedly stole Chitale’s university degree and medical certification, when they both lived together in India, with Chitale’s grandmother between 1999 and 2000.
Acharya was not present during the judgment; Atkinson said that it was the worst case ever. She said before the research job, Acharya had worked in New South Wales hospital for more than a decade, she said.
She disclosed the inquiries that were made with a Chitale’s supervisor in the United Kingdom and it became apparent that Acharya was using his identity.
The actual offense was limited to July-September, 2016, when Acharya was working at a research company ‘Novotech’, magistrate acknowledged that he had been practicing medicine in Australia for several years before that.