Bogus doctor told to pay back 270,000 he 'earned' over 10 years while pretending to be a GPConrad De Souza was caught faking a DNA test to avoid child maintenanceHe had enrolled at medical school in London but never graduatedIn total, he received more than 329,000 in ten years working for the NHS
21:31 GMT, 11 December 2012
Conrad De Souza has been ordered to pay back 270,000 of the money he earned while pretending to be a qualified doctor for Lewisham
Primary Care Trust (PCT) between 2001 and 2010.
He was jailed for 27 months in October last year. De Souza, 54, of Whitmore Road, in Beckenham, received more than 329,000 from the NHS in fraudulently obtained earnings, Croydon Crown Court heard on December 5.
At the PCT, he was employed in highly-paid strategic roles for which it was essential to have a degree and clinical specialisms — however, he had neither.
De Souza, pictured left, was asked to supply the DNA sample after medical researcher Silke Luetzelschwab, right with her daughter, became pregnant following an affair
NHS Protect anti-fraud specialist David Horsley said: 'As a result of his deception, Mr De Souza has not only served a substantial prison sentence for his crimes but has also been ordered to pay 270,000.
'The confiscation order of 270,000 should serve as a warning to anyone tempted to defraud the NHS that, wherever appropriate, NHS Protect will not only seek criminal, civil and disciplinary sanctions but will press for the recovery of any lost NHS funds.'
De Souza's deception was discovered when he was caught faking a DNA sample to avoid maintenance costs for a child he had with a one-time lover.
He pleaded guilty to two counts of fraud by false representation at Croydon Crown Court.
At the trial, prosecutor Robert O’Sullivan said De Souza had lied about having three years’ experience at a busy practice in Beckenham.
The court heard his CV 'could be
described as a work of fiction' and that he had used details of another
doctor with a similar name to get the jobs.
Tanzanian-born British citizen had enrolled at the University of London
medical school in 1980 but never graduated. Sangita Modgil, mitigating,
said De Souza had come from a successful family and could not cope with
having failed university.
Croydon Crown Court heard that De Souza, 54, had received more than 329,000 from the NHS in fraudulently obtained earnings
She said describing himself as a doctor was something of huge importance to his self-esteem.
At the time a spokesman from NHS Lewisham said De Souza had never treated patients, examined them or prescribed medication to them while in his roles as clinical advisor at NHS Lewisham and as assistant clinical director for the South East London Cardiac and Stroke Network.
Judge Simon Pratt described his behaviour as 'brazen' and said he had been 'deeply dishonest and wilfully manipulative.'
He said: 'You were an articulate, driven and deeply dishonest man without any apparent conscience about what you were doing.'
'You were an articulate, driven and deeply dishonest man without any apparent conscience about what you were doing'
In a separate case heard at Bromley Magistrates’ Court, De Souza had pleaded guilty to a charge of fraud by false representation after falsifying a DNA sample.
He was asked to supply the sample after medical researcher Silke Luetzelschwab became pregnant following an affair.
De Souza refused to acknowledge fathering the child and Miss Luetzelschwab was forced to contact the Child Support Agency.
The court heard he supplied the DNA of a close male relative, most likely his father’s.
De Souza was later proved to be the father of Miss Luetzelschwab’s daughter, who was born in December 2009, after which the investigation began. It was also revealed that he was in fact married.
Speaking after sentencing, Stuart Richards, the principle legal enforcement manager for the Child Support Agency in the south east, said De Souza had been 'living a lie'.
He said: 'This was perhaps the most sophisticated attempt to cheat a mother and child out of financial support that the CSA has ever seen.'