Patel a devoted surgeon, didn't cause death: Defence counsel

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Brisbane, June 18 (ANI): Former Bundaberg Base Hospital surgeon Dr Jayant Patel's defence counsel Barrister Michael Byrne QC argued in the Queensland Supreme Court on Friday that complex surgeries were conducted with the consent of the two terminally ill cancer patients because it was their only hope for a cure.

"In a day that began with accusations from prosecutors that Dr Patel had a 'toxic ego' and made 'astonishingly bad' decisions, the surgeon's defence counsel spoke to the Queensland Supreme Court jury and argued that the issue of consent was a 'huge factor' in the trial," The Australian reports.

Sixty-year-old Dr Patel, who is on trial for his manslaughter, has pleaded not guilty to the charges.

"All four of the patients consented to the operations performed by Dr Patel," the lawyer said.

Byrne termed his client as a hard-working doctor, who was 'devoted to his calling'.

The lawyer argued that evidence showed that Dr Patel had worked long hours, made many assessments, assisted younger doctors and was involved in teaching.

"Does that accord with an egomaniac, someone who is driven by his own needs? (Or) does that speak to you of a person other than an egomanic, rather someone who was devoted to his calling," The Courier Mail quoted Byrne, as saying.

Earlier, Dr Patel had pleaded not guilty to Morris' manslaughter, as also to the manslaughter of two other patients.

The charges relate to Dr Patel's time as director of surgery at the Bundaberg Base Hospital between 2003 and 2005.

The trial continues. (ANI)

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