Friday, January 07, 2011

What Court of Law Convicted Dr Andrew Wakefield of Fraud?


The "autism" news has been overwhelmed in the past 48 hours with news that Dr Andrew Wakefield committed fraud in conducting and publishing the MMR study which has since been retracted.  

I was aware that a medical society tribunal in the UK had found problems with the MMR study but I was unaware that a court of law, or governing medical society tribunal, had found Wakefield guilty of the serious offence of fraud.

If anyone knows which court of law,  or governing medical society tribunal,  found Dr. Wakefield guilty of fraud could you post a link to this site please?

Thank you.

8 comments:

doconnor said...

I don't think anyone claimed he was convicted of fraud by a court of law, but that doesn't mean you can't describe the purposeful falsification of scientific data as fraud.

The legal system doesn't have a monopoly on that word.

The author said...

Not everything is decided in a court of law.

Indeed matters of fact trump matters of jurisprudence.

However wishing to avoid any accusation of libel, I believe that Mr Wakefield was found guilty by the British Medical Association, and lost his licence to practice in the UK.

The law has often been the scoundrels resort to restore a reputation that deserved to be lost, one that could not be argued in a scientific debate or otherwise ethical debate.

In the case of Mr Wakefield, I doubt he will contest Mr Deer's associations in open court again, once burnt twice shy as they say.

Autism News Beat said...

Harold, have you ever used the word "fraud" to describe anyone who doesn't agree with you? I think we both know the answer to that:

The greatest autism controversy arises from the unmitigated gall, audacity and arrogance which sees ND ideologues tell parents of autistic children who can barely understand language or the world that they have no right to speak on their children's behalf. ...The fraud and hypocrisy arising from this incredible arrogance are part of a reprehensible misrepresentation taking place in world autism discussions. It is a fraud which seeks to deprive autistic children of the protection of their parents and violates their human rights.

So which court of law convicted Kev Leitch, Autism Diva, Sullivan, et. al.?

Autism Reality NB said...

Autism News Beat my use of the word "fraud" to refer to an ideology was done figuratively. An ideology can not stand trial in a court of law.

The allegations of fraud against Dr Wakefield are literal accusations for which, he could stand trail in a court of law or before an administrative tribunal such as a medical society tribunal.

Surely an evidence based source for journalists like you can see the difference.

AutismNewsBeat said...

The GMC determined fraud eight months ago.

Anonymous said...

Sir,
The UK General Medical Council is the regulatory authority that controls physician registration in that country. They conducted a lengthy "fit-to-practice" examination and found Dr. Wakefield in violation of many counts of professional misconduct. They have revoked his registration and he may no longer legally practice medicine in the UK. Further, The Lancet, the medical journal that published his 1998 original paper, has fully retracted it. The full hearing report is here: http://www.scribd.com/doc/25983372/FACTS-WWSM-280110-Final-Complete-Corrected

I hope this helps.

bullet said...

I think they might be referring to the findings of the GMC on the 28th January 2010. Not sure if "fraud" is legally correct, but the following link does state:

"i. failed to cause the Legal Aid Board to be informed that
investigations represented by the clinicians as being clinically
indicated would be covered by NHS funding,
Found proved
The Panel is satisfied that you had a duty to disclose to the
LAB, via Mr Barr, that clinically indicated investigations
would be funded by the NHS, and that, despite having
opportunities to do so, you failed in that duty.
ii. caused or permitted the money supplied by the Legal Aid
Board to be used for purposes other than those for which you
said it was needed and for which it had been granted".

http://www.gmc-uk.org/static/documents/content/Wakefield__Smith_Murch.pdf.

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