NHS Psychiatrist Jailed; Dark Web Forum and 7,000 Images Seized

Closure for victims?
NHS Psychiatrist Jailed; Dark Web Forum and 7,000 Images Seized

Dr. Kabir Garg was administering “The Annex,” a notorious dark web platform for child sexual abuse, which had over 30,000 registered members.

An Indian psychiatrist who worked at South London and Maudsley NHS Trust has been sentenced to six years in prison for his involvement in a large-scale dark web child sexual abuse scandal. He was arrested by the UK’s National Crime Agency (NCA) in November 2022.

The Annex

According to the NCA, 33-year-old Kabir Garg from Lewisham, London moderated a dark web chat site called The Annex, which boasted 90,000 members worldwide.

He was responsible for sharing hundreds of links to indecent images of children daily on this site, maintaining decorum, and helping other visitors how to share images on the forum and evade law enforcement. Members of the site used the Tor anonymity browser to access the platform.

NHS Psychiatrist Jailed; Dark Web Forum and 7,000 Images Seized
Kabir Garg: Image Courtesy National Crime Agency

A Shocking Crime!

The special prosecutor for the Crown Prosecution Service’s Organised Child Sexual Abuse Unit, Bethany Raine, claimed that it was a shocking crime, considering that Garg was an NHS psychiatrist whose primary duty was to treat vulnerable members of society. He should have understood the devastating impact of sexual abuse on children’s psyche.

Thousands of Indecent Images Uncovered

When the NCA searched his apartment, they recovered several devices, including a laptop and an SD card, from which they found around 7,000 indecent images. Out of these, 522 were category A images, which is the most serious category of indecent material.

In addition, they discovered medical journals and articles on the psychological impact of sexual abuse on children, with titles such as “Puberty and Adolescent Sexuality,” “Effects and Aftermath of Rape,” and “A Study on Child Abuse in India.” This indicates that Garg was well aware of the impact of his actions on children.

Accused Pleaded Guilty

At the hearing on January 9th, the accused pleaded guilty to one count of facilitating the exploitation of children, three counts of sharing indecent images of children, one count of possessing prohibited images of children, and three counts of making indecent images of children. Raine stated that, given the evidence recovered from his residence, Garg had no choice but to plead guilty, and such platforms should not have any place in society.

According to the Crown Prosecution Service press release, the Woolwich Crown Court sentenced Garg on June 23rd, and he was jailed on Friday. Garg will be registered as a sex offender for life and will also be subject to a Serious Harm Prevention Order.

NHS Psychiatrist Jailed; Dark Web Forum and 7,000 Images Seized

A Sigh of Relief

After Garg’s sentencing, the NHS Foundation Trust released a statement hoping that it might bring a “sense of justice and closure” to the victims of his “deplorable actions.”

On the other hand, the General Medical Council has temporarily suspended Garg until the results of a full GMC investigation are received. Once the results arrive, the GMC will decide whether to refer this case to a full tribunal hearing to determine Garg’s fate as a doctor.

Thankfully, the Annex is now defunct. It was revealed that during its active period, it had 30 administrators. Garg was initially a member and became a moderator after impressing the admins with his dedication and “hard work”. He completed his MBBS from King George Medical University, Lucknow, and worked for the National Institute of Mental Health and Neurosciences before moving to the UK.

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