Dentist facing ruin after admitting voyeurism charge

Gurminder Jutla
Gurminder Jutla

A Calderdale dentist’s career could be over after he used his iPhone to record a 16-year-old female dressing.

Dr Gurminder Jutla, 28, is awaiting a decision from his professional body about his future, but his barrister Jason Pitter conceded today (TUES) that the consequences for his client could be devastating.

Jutla, who lives in Leeds and worked locally before losing his job, pleaded guilty to one offence of voyeurism and he was sentenced to a three-year community order which includes supervision and a high-level activity requirement.

The offending came to light in August when the complainant, who cannot be identified for legal reasons, noticed the propped up iPhone as she changed.

Prosecutor Paul Nicholson said she saw that the iPhone had been recording video for about half an hour and she immediately deleted the footage without looking at it.

Bradford Crown Court was told how the complainant then used her own phone to take a photograph of the iPhone in situ and the matter was reported.

Jutla, who had no previous convictions, was arrested and initially told police he often left his phone lying around.

Mr Nicholson said Jutla looked surprised when he was told the complainant had seen the phone recording video and he suggested that he must have pressed the record button by accident.

When Jutla was told the phone could be examined he became uncomfortable and admitted making a ‘’handful’’ of recordings over the last 12 months.

Mr Nicholson said Jutla described it as an obsession which had spiraled out of control.

During his interview Jutla also admitted that he had used the phone to record another woman.

Mr Nicholson said the teenager was left crying and shaking after she reported the offence.

Mr Pitter said that documents handed to the court included a ‘’fulsome apology’’ from his client primarily to those affected by his offending.

Judge Colin Burn was told that Jutla was awaiting an adjudication on his future, but Mr Pitter said the potential effect could be devastating.

‘’It has not been determined, but your honour applying common sense can see the potential consequences given the nature of the offence,’’ added Mr Pitter.

Mr Pitter submitted that professional and family pressures had resulted in his client suffering from depression for some time, but he was now supported by his family and seeking professional assistance.

He stressed that Jutla’s case was not the usual deviant type of case adding:’’This is one where the particular circumstances in his life have led to his offending.’’

As part of his sentence, Jutla will have to register as a sex offender with the police for the next five years and he will also have to pay the complainant £275 in compensation.

Judge Colin Burn said it was clear that professional and domestic pressures had caused a build up of stress for Jutla.

He said the defendant had sought relief or refuge from that stress by viewing pornography but he had then started to record people in a state of undress.

Judge Burn said the offending must have been excruciatingly embarrassing for the complainant knowing that someone else had viewed it.

‘’There will no doubt be professional sanctions in some shape or form,’’ noted the judge.

‘’As Mr Pitter has quite fairly suggested it cannot be known at this stage whether those will be short term, medium term or even permanent sanctions in your case.

‘’It seems to me the best way that the court can prevent any sort of reoffending, in other words to make this a single blip of offending in your case Mr Jutla, is to impose a community order with a high level activity requirement.’’

The judge said the work done with Jutla would get him to finally analyse, breakdown and work through the reasons why he committed the offence.