‘Calculated’ fake psychiatrist of 20 YEARS who pocketed £1m in NHS wages is jailed

Posted March 1, 2023 by: Admin #News

A woman has been sentenced to seven years in prison after posing as a psychiatrist for over two decades, managing to defraud the National Health Service (NHS) of approximately £1 million ($1.38 million) in the process. Zholia Alemi falsely claimed to have a degree from the University of Auckland in New Zealand and submitted fake documents to the General Medical Council (GMC) to register as a doctor in the UK in 1995.


She was able to treat patients and prescribe medication despite having no qualifications or experience. Alemi was convicted of 13 counts of fraud, three counts of obtaining a pecuniary advantage by deception, two counts of forgery, and two counts of using a false instrument after a four-week trial.

The GMC has come under fire for its failure to carry out proper checks on Alemi, which allowed her to continue to practice for so long. The court heard that Alemi moved around the country to avoid suspicion, and that her dishonesty only came to light after journalist Phil Coleman investigated her background. Coleman had been prompted to look into Alemi’s history after she was first jailed in 2018 for attempting to forge the will and powers of attorney of an elderly patient.


Sentencing Alemi, Judge Hilary Manley said that her “deliberate and calculated dishonesty” had “struck so very deeply at the heart of healthcare provisions in this country.” She called for the GMC to conduct a “thorough, open, transparent” inquiry into how Alemi was able to submit “such clearly false documents,” and why it took a journalist rather than a professional governing body to uncover the truth.

Alemi was convicted of multiple offenses, including forgery, fraud, and using false documents to obtain a pecuniary advantage. She was also accused of detaining patients against their will and prescribing powerful drugs. The court heard that Alemi was an “accomplished forger,” and that it was unclear how old she was, as documents had three different dates of birth for her, ranging from 55 to 60.

Alemi’s defense argued that a prison sentence would be particularly harsh for someone with her characteristics, but the judge disagreed, stating that Alemi’s actions had caused significant harm to patients and the healthcare system as a whole. The case highlights the need for rigorous checks and balances in the medical profession, as well as the importance of investigative journalism in uncovering fraudulent behavior.



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