Coventry fake doctor jailed for duping elderly people
A "fantasist" who posed as a doctor to dupe elderly people out of money and prescribed them potentially dangerous medicine, has been jailed.
Kammi Bassi from Coventry, who feigned blindness in court, also pretended to be a nurse, occupational therapist, physiotherapist and chiropractor.
Warwick Crown Court heard the 58-year-old had "an almost insatiable need for attention and love".
Bassi, who was convicted of fraud last month, was jailed for three years.
She was also convicted of supplying prescription-only medicine.
Her victims from across the West Midlands were made to pay for massages and home help work after she contacted them, the prosecution said.
She gave her own prescription drugs, the anti-inflammatory Naproxen 500 which had a potential side effect of gastro-intestinal bleeding, to three people.
One woman took seven tablets before consulting others who advised against them, the court heard.
Bassi, of Woodside Avenue North, claimed to be a doctor and an osteopath to a woman she met in a Lloyd's Chemists branch and said she had noticed she was limping and could help her.
At court on Thursday, Bassi refused to return to the dock after reports had been prepared on her ahead of sentencing, which occurred in her absence.
During her trial she had appeared in the dock in a wheelchair with a hearing aid, dark glasses and a white stick, but Judge Sarah Buckingham said she had no condition affecting her hearing or sight.
At her first appearance at court she feigned blindness but was seen getting out of her car after she had driven to court.
Sentencing Bassi in her absence Ms Buckingham said prescribing drugs "when you are not qualified can be extremely dangerous".
"Your conduct was motivated not so much by money, although you were determined to be paid, but out of a deep-seated desire to be respected for skills you simply didn't have.
"But you did demonstrate a reckless disregard for their safety."
She was also given a restraining order banning her from having any contact with her victims or their families, and a criminal behaviour order.
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