A DOCTOR has escaped being struck off despite blackmailing his former girlfriend by threatening to reveal naked pictures of her.

Dr Muhammad Naeem Khan, a trainee GP in Glasgow, threatened to humiliate and shame his ex-girlfriend by releasing the pictures to her parents if she did not keep in contact with him.

However, despite finding four charges against him proved, a watchdog disciplinary panel ruled Dr Khan's "fitness to practise" was not impaired.

The Medical Practitioners' Tribunal Service (MPTS) decided against even giving Dr Khan a warning. The hearing in Manchester heard glowing tributes from colleagues of Dr Khan, who described him as the "number one choice for a locum candidate".

The General Medical Council (GMC), which brought the case, had argued the doctor's fitness to practise was impaired, and the outcome was condemned by patient groups who said the case would undermine the public's confidence in the NHS.

The tribunal earlier dropped eight charges, including that he raped the woman in a Pakistani medical college, after finding there was no case to answer.

Yesterday the panel found four of the charges against the doctor, who moved to the UK from Pakistan in 2008, proved.

These included a charge he "threatened to reveal the naked photographs of Miss A to her parents if she did not maintain contact with [him]".

The panel accepted his actions would "have led to the disgracing of Miss A and her family" if he had released the pictures.

Another charge, that Dr Khan discussed kidnapping a friend of Miss A's in Pakistan, was found proved, although the panel found this did not amount to misconduct.

Yesterday it announced the doctor's fitness to practise was not impaired, and he has escaped any sanction.

The panel said his actions were "exceptional" in an otherwise unblemished career.

Tribunal panel chairman Dr Neil Fyfe said: "The panel noted the extreme stress you were under at the time of the events.

"You were clearly desperate, distraught and emotionally stressed by the break-up of your relationship with Miss A.

"The panel's judgment is that the circumstances were highly specific in nature, place and time. They were exceptional.

"Although you did not admit the proven factual allegations, the panel is satisfied you do have insight into your misconduct."

The representative for the GMC, Bernadette Baxter, had argued he had "breached fundamental tenets of the profession" and his "integrity could not be relied upon", while Margaret Watt, of the Scotland Patients' Association, said: "He shouldn't be allowed to see females anymore without a chaperone.

"It's totally unacceptable. I'm not comfortable with the decision at all. How do patients get confidence in the NHS when someone does something like that?

"I think the MPTS needs to look at its disciplinary procedures."

Ms Watt added: "I would expect that as part of the findings at the MPTS, he is retrained in respect and dignity."

An MPTS spokesman said it does not issue further commentaries on panel decisions.

A spokeswoman for Dr Khan's employer, NHS Education Scotland, said it too would be taking no action.

She said that in light of the tribunal's ruling: "We will be taking no further action, and will be making no further comment."

Announcing its decision to conclude the case without any sanction being taken, the panel said: "Having regard to all the circumstances in your case, the panel determined that to issue a warning on your registration would be disproportionate, nor is it required in the public interest."