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The Argus
Child porn doctor’s appeal for leniency
By Anna Roberts
5th February 2013

handcuffs+hand+cuffsA doctor downloaded hundreds of sick child porn images but told bosses it did not affect how he worked because he did it “in the privacy of his own home”.

Dr Michael Beranek added that he should be treated more leniently because he had accessed the images – some of them the most severe available – for free.

And he told health officials he should be allowed to carry on working as a staff psychiatrist, caring for mentally ill people in Sussex, because looking at the images had not affected his ability to work.

Beranek was convicted at Lewes Crown Court after police swooped on his haul of 800-plus images in January last year.

Beranek, 42, worked as a psychiatrist at The Langford Centre, a centre for vulnerable people with mental health problems, in De La Warr Road, Bexhill, and had worked there for about nine years.

Now Beranek, who is understood to have acted as an expert witness in court cases, has been struck off the doctors’ register and banned from looking after patients ever again.

Sentenced A Medical Practitioners’ Tribunal Service (MPTS) hearing, the results of which have just been published, was told that Beranek was sentenced in April for making indecent images of children.

Jail sentence

He was handed a suspended 20-week jail sentence and was ordered to take part in a 60-day supervision order.

He was also made the subject of a Sexual Offences Prevention Order, which controls his access to children for five years, and was ordered to sign the sex offenders’ register for seven years.

A report from the MPTS hearing said: “You stated that you had never accessed such images at your workplace and that your clinical practice had not been affected by how you behaved in the privacy of your home.

“The panel does not consider that you have shown any understanding of the consequences for the children involved in the creating of those images or the vulnerable position in which they were put.”

The doctor, who gave his address in court as West Drayton in Middlesex, declined to speak to The Argus.