Arjun Ramachandran, smh
September 10, 2008 - 2:53PM
A magistrate this afternoon refused an application by former NSW doctor Graeme Reeves - charged with 17 offences against patients - to be released on bail.
Reeves, 58, has been charged with nine counts of aggravated sexual assault, six counts of indecent assault, one count of female genital mutilation and one count of maliciously inflicting grievous bodily harm.
The charges involve 10 women, Detective Superintendent John Kerlatec told reporters today.
"I encourage anyone who has further information about this investigation to contact police immediately," Detective Superintendent Kerlatec said in a statement.
Reeves was arrested at his home in the north-western Sydney suburb of Baulkham Hills at 6am today.
This followed a police raid on a storage unit at Gladesville on Wednesday last week, when documents were seized for examination.
A police prosecutor told the court the offences carried a jail term of up to 20 years and the case was strong.
Reeves's lawyer Greg Murray applied for bail at Parramatta Local Court saying his client was not a flight risk and had co-operated with the police - even providing them with material as recently as Monday.
He said there was no risk of reoffending as his client no longer ran a medical practice. He would also live with his wife at her sister's house.
But the magistrate James Garbett refused bail saying that, while Reeves, who has no criminal record, did not pose a flight risk during the investigation, the situation was now different.
Difficulty for investigators
Reeves covered his eye and looked down as the decision was announced.
Reeves had been "very co-operative" as he was being charged this morning, Detective Superintendent Kerlatec said.
He said the difficulty for investigators had been in distinguishing between medical malpractice and "what is alleged to be criminal incidents".
The investigation had also involved speaking to more than 100 patients, witnesses and health professionals, Detective Superintendent Kerlatec said.
He said the documents seized at the storage facility had been medical records, but he would not speculate why they had been stored there.
Detective Superintendent Kerlatec said that Reeves's alleged victims had been very brave in coming forward.
"Our primary concern is to the victims who still suffer emotionally," he told Fairfax Radio Network.
"We must tip our hats today - they've been very strong, coming forward and providing us with information."
There were potentially hundreds of victims who might still come forward, Detective Superintendent Kerlatec said.
"This investigation is certainly not over. It's been a long seven months. We've had 15 police working full time on this."
- with AAP