AN anaesthetist accused of raping a woman during a C-section could have done the same to two other mums the same day, colleagues fear.
Giovanni Quintella Bezerra, 32, was arrested after he was allegedly caught on camera violating the heavily sedated patient in Brazil.
The mobile phone camera was set up by surgical colleagues at the Heloneida Studart Women's Hospital in São João de Meriti, near Rio de Janeiro.
They were suspicious of him, and surprised at the level of sedation he was giving to women, according to Brazilian news outlet Globo.
The team's first two C-sections on Sunday were in a theatre where filming was impossible.
For the third op, staff managed to switch at the last minute to another room where theatre technicians had hidden the phone, reports Globo.
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Horrifying footage allegedly shows Dr Bezerra placing his penis in the woman's mouth in an assault lasting ten minutes.
Surgeons and nurses on the other side of the screen cannot see the woman's face while they are delivering her baby.
But after viewing the footage they immediately alerted hospital bosses and police.
Dr Bezerra – who qualified as an anaesthetist two months ago – was arrested on Monday on suspicion of rape.
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Police are now investigating whether more women could have been targeted, including the first two patients on Sunday.
Barbara Lomb, from the local police station, praised the medical team for their "exemplary" professionalism.
She said: "It is necessary to highlight the performance of the nursing team and exemplary health professionals who noticed the movement of the doctor’s body in other surgeries."
The lead surgeon who performed the caesarian will reportedly be called to give a statement.
Dr Bezerra's lawyer claimed detectives have not yet shared evidence with him, in breach of his rights.
Meanwhile the state health ministry said: “An internal investigation will be opened to take administrative measures.
"The Hospital da Mulher team is providing full support to the victim and her family.
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"This behaviour constitutes a crime, which must be punished in accordance with the legislation in force."
Cremerj, the regional medical council, said it has begun a disciplinary process that would see the doctor struck off if found guilty of misconduct.
How you can get help
Women’s Aid has this advice for victims and their families:
- Always keep your phone nearby.
- Get in touch with charities for help, including the Women’s Aid live chat helpline and services such as SupportLine.
- If you are in danger, call 999.
- Familiarise yourself with the Silent Solution, reporting abuse without speaking down the phone, instead dialing “55”.
- Always keep some money on you, including change for a pay phone or bus fare.
- If you suspect your partner is about to attack you, try to go to a lower-risk area of the house – for example, where there is a way out and access to a telephone.
- Avoid the kitchen and garage, where there are likely to be knives or other weapons. Avoid rooms where you might become trapped, such as the bathroom, or where you might be shut into a cupboard or other small space.
If you are a victim of domestic abuse, SupportLine is open Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday from 6pm to 8pm on 01708 765200. The charity’s email support service is open weekdays and weekends during the crisis – [email protected]
Women’s Aid provides a live chat service – available weekdays from 8am-6pm and weekends 10am-6pm.
You can also call the freephone 24-hour National Domestic Abuse Helpline on 0808 2000 247.
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