April 2021

L&D nurse struck off over ‘grooming’ and ‘predatory’ messages online

A trainee nurse at Luton & Dunstable Hospital has been struck off after he was caught sending sexual messages online to a person posing as a teenager.

Navin Joseph Luther’s name was erased from the nursing register following a fitness to practice hearing held by the Nursing & Midwifery Council which ended on March 18.

Luther failed to turn up to the hearing, which heard he had sent “a large number” of sexual messages to a person he believed was under 16 on an online dating site.

In their findings, the panel noted: “Having considered the messages in detail, the panel was of the view that they were predatory in nature and indicative of grooming behaviour.

“The seriousness of this case was heightened by the fact that Mr Luther has been placed on the Sex Offender’s Register for a period of two years.

“The panel had regard to the context and cultural explanations that Mr Luther put forward to the police.

“However, there was no information before the panel today to support those explanations.”

Luther began working at the L&D University Hospital as a trainee nurse on May 30, 2019, and he committed the offences less than a month later between June 22 and 24.

He was suspended from duty on June 27, 2019, after the offence was reported.

He received a police caution for engaging with sexual communications with a child on December 4, 2019, and was placed on the Sex Offenders’ Register for two years.

The following day, he was sacked by the L&D for gross misconduct.

A L&D Hospital spokesman said: “We take such matters extremely seriously. This behaviour fell well short of the standards we expect and require.

“We acted quickly and decisively to suspend Mr Luther as soon as the first allegations were brought to our attention.

“We then immediately dismissed him for gross misconduct once he had been formally cautioned.”