Doctor labelled the "Bega Butcher" arrested and charged

The New South Wales Health Department is in the news again with the arrest of a doctor who has been charged with 17 offences regarding 10 of his patients.

Dr. Graeme Reeves, who faces allegations that he sexually assaulted and mutilated the genitals of female patients, was arrested at his home at Baulkham Hills, in Sydney's north-west early this morning - he practised for more than 20 years as an obstetrician and gynaecologist.

The 58-year-old was taken to Parramatta Police Station and charged following a search of a storage unit at Gladesville on Wednesday in which a number of documents were seized.

After more than 100 allegations of patient misconduct against the former doctor between 2001 and 2003 at Baulkham Hills and Bega, a police investigation was set up in February to look into the case.

According to Detective Superintendent John Kerlatec from the Child Protection and Sex Crimes Squad, the allegations include claims of mutilation to his female patients' genitals, sexual abuse, indecent assault and grievous bodily harm.

Detective Superintendant Kerlatec says approximately 113 women have come forward, but he expects the case to be a difficulty investigation in respect of separating what is malpractice and what is a criminal action, and he says the investigation has already been a long and complex one that is not yet over.

The Police say dealing with more than 113 victims and witnesses, talking to medical practitioners and experts, and also examining quantities of medical records, has been a time consuming exercise and is the first investigation of its size and nature.

They say of primary concern is the welfare and privacy of the patients involved and counselling services have been made available to the victims.

Reeves has reportedly been "very co-operative" and is expected to face Parramatta Local Court later today.

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