Jury retires in trial of Brighton doctor accused of faking messages

The jury has retired to consider its verdict in the trial of a Brighton doctor who is accused of faking text messages in order to sabotage his flatmate’s relationships.

Javed Saumtally

Javed Saumtally was “devious”, “determined” and “technologically adept” in spinning a web of lies, Hove Crown Court was told.

Saumtally, 28, who spent six years at Brighton and Sussex Medical School, created bogus screenshots and a false report to police, jurors were told.

The doctor, now a GP living in Ipswich, in Suffolk, pleaded not guilty to a single charge of perverting the course of justice.

Yesterday (Friday 3 September), Judge Jeremy Gold sent the jury out to consider their verdict.

Janet Weeks, defending, said that there were “simply too many unanswered questions” in the case and urged jurors to find her client not guilty.

But earlier in the trial, Jonathan Atkinson, prosecuting, said that Saumtally was “motivated by his own feelings” for his flatmate, Ben Gough. They first met when they were living in Brighton.

Mr Atkinson said that Saumtally set about “sending abusive and derogatory messages from unknown numbers” to Mr Gough.

He also sent messages to himself, Mr Atkinson added, “no doubt to make it look like he was also a victim and to deflect attention away from him.”

Saumtally denied faking text messages when he gave evidence at the trial.

It was suggested to him that he was jealous of his flatmate, having previously had a brief relationship with him.

Saumtally said that this was not the case, arguing that they had been clear that he was eventually moving to Ipswich and that the relationship had an end date.

In his closing speech yesterday, Mr Atkinson said: “He was devious, he was determined and technologically adept. No one else stood to gain. He had the motive. He had the means throughout these incidents. He created false exhibits and he lied to police.”

Miss Weeks said that the absence of Saumtally’s flatmate from the trial meant that there were “simply too many unanswered questions without him giving evidence”.

The trial continues.

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