NHS surgeon, 42, found with nearly 40,000 child porn images

Married NHS heart and lung surgeon, 42, is struck off after police found nearly 40,000 child porn images on 33 different electronic devices at his home

  • Cristian Bogdan, 43, collected the child pornography over course of two years
  • The images and videos included children between the ages of four and 14 
  • Paedophile said he was ‘stressed’ working at Royal Stoke University Hospital

A senior NHS surgeon has been caught with nearly 40,000 images and videos of child pornography that featured children as young as four.  

Cristian Bogdan, 43, a heart and lung surgeon, was arrested and struck off after detectives raided his home and found the pornography across 33 different electronic devices.   

The paedophile, who is a married father-of-one from Congleton in Cheshire, claimed he had been ‘stressed’ while working at Royal Stoke University Hospital. 

Officers found 125,246 images on his devices but due to time constraints were only able to assess 37,840 of them. 

Cristian Bogdan, 43, a heart and lung surgeon in Congleton, Cheshire, was arrested and struck off after detectives raided his home and found the pornography across 33 different electronic devices

Bogdan, whose wife is also a doctor, avoided jail last year when he was given a 12-month suspended sentence and ordered to sign the Sex Offender Register for ten years.

He said he was ‘remorseful’ and had been working with the Lucy Faithful Foundation – a charity that tackles child sexual abuse. 

This week he refused to attend a disciplinary tribunal in Manchester after he was reported to the General Medical Council and his name has been erased from the medical register. 

The paedophile, who is a married father-of-one from Congleton in Cheshire, claimed he had been ‘stressed’ while working at Royal Stoke University Hospital

Panel chairman, Nicholas Flanagan, said: ‘The nature Dr Bogdan’s conviction was of the utmost seriousness.

‘He was convicted of having a significant quantity of indecent images of children, involving still and moving images. The downloading was over an extended period of time, and the images included the sexual penetration of very young children.

‘A conviction of this type would be regarded as deplorable by fellow practitioners and by the public. The offences breach fundamental tenets of the profession and pose a significant risk to the public, given the high volume of indecent images of children he downloaded.

‘Dr Bogdan has shown very limited engagement with the GMC or MPTS since he was arrested and the tribunal was therefore not satisfied he has demonstrated any insight into his offending. Whilst there is no evidence of any clinical concerns, any such factors are of limited assistance due to the severity of the criminal offences.

‘Doctors occupy a position of privilege and trust and are expected to act with integrity and to uphold proper standards of conduct. Dr Bogdan actions fell very far short of these standards and failed to have regard to the health, safety, and well-being of the public. He failed to uphold proper professional standards and conduct for members of the medical profession, and presents an ongoing risk to the public.

‘Members of the public would be rightly appalled by the knowledge that a medical practitioner had committed criminal offences involving the images and videos of child sexual abuse. Only the sanction of erasure could be justified given the gravity of the offending.’    

Inquiries revealed Bogdan had been collecting the illegal material for at least two years using P2P file sharing after he initially used the system to download family pictures.  

Bogdan, whose wife is also a doctor, avoided jail last year when he was given a 12-month suspended sentence and ordered to sign the Sex Offender Register for ten years. Pictured: Royal Stoke University Hospital

The raid occured on December 1, 2017, after a tip-off.

Officers from Cheshire Police’s Paedophile and Cyber Investigation team discovered indecent images of children aged between four and six while other pictures were of youngsters aged six to eight. Each film involved a girl aged 14.

Bogdan initially made no comment following his arrest but later handed himself in at Macclesfield Police Station in January 2019 and handed over a prepared statement. 

In it he stated he became ‘interested’ in file sharing and downloading peer to peer software to his computer in 2015.

He said he then started downloading sexual images, but he stated that the vast majority of the images he downloaded were ‘family or non-prohibited images.’ 

At Chester Crown Court he pleaded guilty to three charges of making indecent photographs of children, one of possessing indecent photographs of children and one count of possessing prohibited images of children.

He was also ordered to complete 150 hours of unpaid work and made subject to a Sexual Harm Prevention Order for 10 years.

At the time Judge Steven Everett told him: ‘It is really important to get across to you, and people like you, that these are not just images but real people, they involve young children who have been sexually abused.

‘Whatever you were doing at the time, you must have realised what you did. The stress of being a consultant may be part of it, but that is no excuse. You showed you are not fit to be a doctor, no-one can trust you with any person, let alone a child. You should never be allowed near patients again.’

At the tribunal hearing Terence Rigby, lawyer for the General Medical Council, said: ‘The judge set out certain mitigation features in relation to the doctor in that he appeared to be remorseful and the fact he had apparently a loyal and supportive wife and a family and due to the fact he was working with the Lucy Faithful foundation.

‘But these matters are so serious, it is almost impossible to imagine anything that he might have done or could suggest which would cause the tribunal to consider that his fitness to practice medicine wasn’t impaired. The public at large would be very concerned if they heard that a doctor in this position were not to be found impaired.

Bogdan gave no reason for not attending the disciplinary hearing. During his court case defence lawyer Peter Wright QC said: ‘He is of previous good character with a distinguished medical career that is now utterly destroyed.

‘He has been ostracised professionally, socially shamed, and is ashamed by his conduct. But he does not want to minimise or excuse that conduct – his downfall is his own making. The people pictured are the victims and he realises that, and he is determined to correct this as much as he can.’

Dr John Oxtoby, Royal Stoke’s medical director, said: ‘Mr Bogdan was a surgeon whose work involved the care of adults and had no contact with children. The Trust would like to emphasise that there are no reasons for patients to be concerned.’

Damion Lloyd, of Mersey Cheshire Crown Prosecution Service, said: ‘At work Bogdan held down a difficult and respected job but at home he was searching for and downloading thousands of images of children being sexually abused.

‘In interview he tried to downplay the amount of images he had, claiming he’d downloaded them in bulk and deleted most of them but it was clear that he was continually actively seeking out these dreadful images of abuse. He had no previous convictions and had a responsible job yet he risked all of that in the pursuit of these crimes.

‘Sexual abuse has a dreadful impact on victims and the sexual abuse of children can have long lasting effects for the rest of their lives.’ 

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