Bristol hospital worker dismissed after paedophile sting

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image captionJoshua Foster worked as an operating department practitioner for North Bristol NHS Trust

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.css-14iz86j-BoldText{font-weight:bold;}A hospital worker caught by a paedophile hunter after allegedly arranging to meet someone he believed to be 14 for sex has been dismissed.

A tribunal heard Joshua Foster sent sexually explicit messages to a man posing as a girl before arranging a meeting at Bath Spa railway station.

He was charged under the Sexual Offences Act 2003 but ruled not guilty.

Mr Foster, an operating department practitioner for North Bristol NHS Trust, has now been struck off.

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His trial at Bristol Crown Court in 2018 collapsed after the judge misdirected the jury.

The Local Democracy Reporting Service said the Crown Prosecution Service decided not to proceed with a retrial and a verdict of not guilty was entered.

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‘I could end up in jail’

The HCPTS then examined the evidence and saw sexually explicit messages from Mr Foster to “Lou”.

One said: “And I can’t stress that enough if something were to happen I could end up in jail you understand that right? I’m putting a lot of trust in you.”

Mr Foster claimed he had gone to tell “Lou” he did not intend to have sex with her and to “let her down gently”.

The panel rejected this and found that, on the balance of probabilities, he sent the sexually explicit messages and arranged the meeting to have sex.

It said: “Public confidence in the profession would be significantly undermined if the registrant were allowed to remain upon the register, because that course would give the impression to the public that the profession did not take sufficiently seriously an attempt to commit a serious sexual offence against a child.”

North Bristol NHS Trust said: “As soon as we became aware of the allegations against Mr Foster he was suspended pending an investigation.

“This later led to his dismissal and reporting of Mr Foster to a professional body.”

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