Dapto GP jailed for three years

Dr. Das Vithal Balgi. PICTURE: ANDY ZAKELI

Dr. Das Vithal Balgi. PICTURE: ANDY ZAKELI

A woman sexually assaulted by Dapto doctor Das Vithal Balgi during a bogus medical examination says she is relieved the GP will spend at least 12 months behind bars.

Balgi was found guilty in March this year of sexually stimulating the woman under the guise of medical treatment during a consultation in 2012.

On Wednesday he was sentenced to an overall prison term of three years, with a minimum one year to be spent behind bars.

Presiding judge Paul Conlon said Balgi's crime was a most serious one, involving a gross breach of trust.

Outside the court, the woman said she was satisfied with the outcome.

"I'm just happy he didn't get a suspended sentence," she said.

"I wouldn't have cared if he'd only gotten a week in jail, I just wanted him to feel the same sense of fear he's instilled in me."

The woman said thoughts of her daughters had given her the courage to report the abuse and face the at-times daunting court process.

"I feel like a huge weight has been lifted off me now," she said after the sentence was given.

"It's given me a sense of closure, and I feel like I can move on with living my life."

Wollongong District Court heard the assault on the woman was part of a series of bizarre behaviours from 71-year-old Balgi, which included him telling her she was attractive, hounding her with calls and text messages, and inviting her to his home.

Jurors found Balgi guilty of one count of aggravated sexual assault but cleared him of two other charges of the same nature.

The court heard that during the assault Balgi pressed his erection into the woman's arm and told her to "relax and close your eyes".

Afterwards he told her she should "thank him", before recommending she return to him for weekly internal examinations.

"I tried convincing myself to start with that he's a trusted doctor and that that was possibly a legitimate medical check," the woman told the court during the trial.

"[But] it just didn't feel right and it was really affecting me and I felt embarrassed and dirty ... because that's not something that should be done by anyone but your partner."

On Wednesday the woman said she hoped her case might give other victims of sexual assault courage to come forward and report offenders.

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