I haven’t thought about this in many years now. Maybe letting the pain and disappointment of the most unpleasant experience in my life fade into the past. However, while surfing the web last week, I found the www.chiropracticlive.com forum and found also that my case with the GCC had been referred to.
I was found guilty by the GCC of trumped up charges such as: using qualifications I didn’t have and deliberately misleading the public (an accusation never proved). I was suspended for 18 months, a very harsh sentence if someone had been injured but when you are completely innocent it is an outrage.
Here’s the Story
Basically I had agreed to pay £15,000 to buy Brad Basaraba’s clinic in Weybridge but when I saw the books we could not agree a sum and he decided to punish me by filing a complaint with the GCC. I gave evidence to the GCC that Basaraba altered my headed note paper etc. I e-mailed Margaret Coats many times to explain the situation and she never responded and showed no interest in hearing my side of the story.
I was charged with misleading the public in my advertising and claiming degrees and qualifications I wasn’t entitled to use. A few days later I received a notice from the ASA that I am under investigation for claiming to be a medical doctor and false advertising and claiming fake degrees.
To make a very long story brief, the GCC appeared only interested in getting a conviction they had no interest in establishing the truth.
1. I have copies in my possession of the correspondence between Greg Price and Clare Heyward at the ASA. In which it is obvious that Price is directing the ASA in what they should find. Clare Heyward of the ASA called Price on 21 August 2002 to ask if a statement made in my advertisement was true. Price told the ASA that there was no evidence to support my claim. This was based on a phone conversation between Alan Breen and Greg Price in spite of the fact that I had sent documentation supporting my claim to Price which has gone missing and Dr. John Triano of the Texas Back Institute when asked the same question did not disagree with my claim. The interoffice correspondence clearly demonstrates that the ASA was inclined to find in my favor until Price intervened and swayed them to find against me. In another inter office memo from the ASA on 28/8/02, the document of the meeting dicussing my advertising directed someone named Louise that “the Authority concluded that the advertisement was UNLIKELY to mislead.” I had provided the ASA with boxes of research and documents supporting all of statements in my advertising and rather than reading them, they contacted Price to ask if this was necessary.
2. I sent documentation to the GCC proving that Basaraba had altered my letterhead and business cards to support his complaint. I sent the invoice from the printer proving that the business card Basaraba used was not the card I was using and was falsified. None of this evidence, to my knowledge, was ever presented to the PCC. I was now back living in the US at the time of the hearing and unable to attend because of a family illness. I have recordings of Price telling my wife on the phone that I was guilty and “going down” and he would make certain I did. This was on 3 July 2002 at 2:45 PM before the Investigating Committee had met. In every conversation I or my wife had with Price I was treated like the already guilty off spring of Satan.
3. The GCC claimed at the PCC that I had deliberately mislead the public but did not produce one person that had been misled by me. In 22 years of practice I have never had a complaint from a patient.
4. The PCC found me guilty of violating the ASA’s standards and yet the ASA found against me because of Price’s advice. I supplied this evidence to the GCC, and it would appear to have miraculously disappeared. The Code of Practice says we are not to violate the ASA standards. But if the ASA finds us guilty because the GCC tells them we are and then the PCC finds us guilty because the ASA did, isn’t there something wrong with that.
5. I provided the GCC copies of every degree and certification I was accused of not having and I was still found guilty.
6. I provided peer reviewed documentation for every claim made in my advertising along with reference letters from some very influential chiropractors around the world. Still guilty. Did the PCC see these papers??
7. On 29 August 2002 I provided Price with copies and photographs of profane and slanderous placards and posters which Basaraba had placed on the windows and doors of my clinic. I asked Price to initiate an investigation against Basaraba which never happened and I can find no record of it in the official papers. The pictures and copies are there but no initiation of a complaint. That has gone missing.
Now for something that makes my case completely unique as far as I know. My case may be the only one ever reviewed by another chiropractic governing body. After relocating to South Carolina, the SC Board were notified of the decision of the PCC to suspend me. By law they had to investigate the charges all over again. Remember that the South Carolina Department of Labor Licensing and Regulation performs the same function in South Carolina as the GCC does in the UK. The board was established in 1932 and as such has 70 years more experience than the GCC. Having looked at all the evidence on November 29 2005; they concluded that “there was not sufficient evidence to warrant a formal complaint” and dismissed the complaint. And they saw no impediment to me continuing to practice chiropractic.
Now that is one huge difference: 18 months suspension vs. “not sufficient evidence to warrant a formal complaint”.
I suppose the thing that hurts the most about the entire ordeal is that I still can’t believe that a board of my peers came to the absurd decision that they did. With absolutely NO PROOF of any kind I was suspended for 18 months. I couldn’t in my wildest imagination have foreseen their decision. I can never fully redeem my reputation and I shouldn’t even need to.