Psychiatrist indicted on 16 counts of assault

LAWRENCEVILLE - A former Lawrenceville-based psychiatrist was indicted Thursday on charges he sexually assaulted 14 patients who were under his care, court documents show.

Dr. Mohammad Uzair Qureshi, 45, who operated out of the Gwinnett-Rockdale-Newton Community Service Board in Lawrenceville, faces 16 counts of sexually assaulting 14 women between November 2006 and September 2007, according to the indictment.

Qureshi, who could not be reached for comment Thursday, is not permitted to practice in the state of Georgia after the Composite State Board of Medical Examiners suspended his license in December 2007, according to the board's medical director, Dr. Jim McNatt.

Known as "Dr. Q," the Pakistan native aroused suspicions in late September 2007 when a female patient told Lawrenceville police the doctor conducted an unnecessary breast exam during her initial psychiatric consultation. According to police statements at the time, Qureshi convinced the woman to remove her shirt and undergarments.

He was arrested several days later and charged with felony sexual assault and sexual battery. He was freed on $33,200 bond.

In the weeks following his initial arrest, more than six women came forward with complaints they also were sexually assaulted by the psychiatrist. After being arrested Oct. 9, 2007, on 12 counts of sexual battery and sexual assault, Qureshi spent 10 days in jail until he was released on bond, records show.

Since that time, according to the indictment, more women came forward with complaints. All allege Qureshi touched their breasts during appointments at GNR. It is unknown the context in which the alleged assaults occurred.

Lawrenceville police could not be reached for comment Thursday.

Representatives from the Gwinnett-Rockdale-Newton Community Service Board, or GRN, have previously said Qureshi was contracted by a staffing agency to work at the facility and was not technically considered an employee.

According to Qureshi's physician profile on the Composite State Board of Medical Examiners' Web site, he attended Sindh Medical College in Karachi, Pakistan, from 1979 to 1986 and later completed graduate work at the University of Connecticut in 2003 after spending four years there.

McNatt, the state board's medical director, said Qureshi's license suspension is "pending the outcome of the criminal actions."

Prior to obtaining his Georgia medical license in July 2006, Qureshi received a New York medical license in April 2005, according to the board's Web site. That permit was later restricted by the New York Medical Board in March.

Georgia law states Qureshi could face one to three years in jail for each charge if he is convicted.