Toronto psychiatrist Dr. Melvyn Iscove has been found guilty by Ontario’s medical board of sexually abusing two of his male patients. Melvyn believes homosexuality is a “sexual disorder” that can be overcome. The “gay cure doctor” was described in a decision of the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario’s discipline committee as having a “special interest in the treatment of patients with problems related to homosexuality.”
The committee found he engaged in mutual masturbation and oral sex with two male patients on different occasions during therapy sessions, and once had anal intercourse with one of them in his office.
The identities of both patients are protected. Now in their 40s, both men (who didn’t know each other prior to the court proceedings) came forward in recent years, about incidents that took place when they were younger. The allegations mostly date back to the ’90s and early 2000s.
Patient A testified that one day Iscove embraced him and that the doctor said: “What are you thinking you want to do?” and then “You may touch me if you like,” and the patient then touched Iscove’s erect penis through his pants.
Patient B was a long-time patient who had begun seeing Iscove in the late ’80s at the age of 18. The pair’s relationship turned sexual in 2007, with the pair engaging mutual masturbation and oral sex on a number of occasions, as well as having penetrative sex.
The panel believed the incidents occurred as described by the patients.
“Neither complainant described any emotional or romantic aspects of the sexual activity with Dr. Iscove, and both said that at some point, they thought that the sexual activity was part of the therapy and an attempt to cure them of homosexuality by engaging in the acts, rather than fantasizing about them,” the discipline panel wrote in a decision released this week.
Iscove denied the sexual abuse allegations. His license was immediately suspended after the guilty findings pending a penalty hearing that has yet to be scheduled.
“We’re both very disappointed with the result, obviously,” said Iscove’s lawyer, Alfred Kwinter. “Dr. Iscove has always denied the allegations, he continues to do so, and he’s seriously considering an appeal.”
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