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GOC suspends Plymouth based student optometrist

4 May 2018

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The General Optical Council (GOC), the UK regulator for optometrists and dispensing opticians, has decided to suspend Courtney Lee Jones, a student optometrist based in Plymouth, from its register for a period of twelve months.

A GOC Fitness to Practise Committee found his fitness to practise impaired by reason of misconduct. The registrant, who worked as an optical assistant, was dishonest in that he removed a manual from his work, retained it at home without asking the owner’s permission and intended to keep the manual. In addition, he removed £10 from a charity box located at his work and only returned it once he was aware its removal was discovered.

In making the decision, the Committee, chaired by Pamela Ormerod, said:

“The Committee considered that the facts found proved in the allegations were deliberate and amounted to a pattern of dishonest behaviour. The Committee considered that the registrant had abused trust, attempted to conceal his wrongdoing and brought suspicion on his colleagues. Further, the Committee considered that the registrant’s actions were for financial gain.”

“The Committee was in no doubt that the registrant’s past actions did bring the profession into disrepute and given the seriousness of the misconduct identified, including dishonesty, that public confidence in the profession would be seriously damaged if a finding of current impairment was not made.”

“In the particular circumstances of this case the Committee considered that whilst some risk of repetition remained it was not such a significant risk that a suspension order would not adequately protect the public.”

Mr Jones has until 28 May 2018 to appeal his suspension. If no appeal is lodged, the suspension order will take effect on 29 May 2018.

ENDS


NOTES TO EDITORS:
1. The full determination is available at https://www.optical.org/en/Investigating_complaints/Hearings/past_hearings/index.cfm
2. A full transcript of the hearing is available on request and payment of an administration charge.
3. A briefing on how the FTP process works is available at: https://www.optical.org/en/news_publications/press_kit/media-statements-and-briefings/index.cfm
4. The registrant’s date of most recent registration with the GOC as an optometrist was 18 September 2013. His GOC registration number is SO-9160. His last registered contact address was in Plymouth, Devon.

For media enquiries please contact:
GOC Communications Team
General Optical Council
t: 020 7580 3898 (option 3)
e: communications@optical.org
 

 

 

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