Prosecution and defense give closing arguments in Chesapeake OBGYN's trial

Posted at 5:27 PM, Nov 04, 2020
and last updated 2020-11-06 20:28:30-05

CHESAPEAKE, Va. - The fate of a Chesapeake gynecologist now sits in the hands of 12 jurors. The jurors were handed the case around 4 p.m. Wednesday before being dismissed to return and resume Thursday morning.

Dr. Javaid Perwaiz has been on trial in federal court for more than three weeks.

$2.4 million - that's what the government believes Dr. Javaid Perwaiz made from doing dozens of unnecessary surgeries on nearly three dozen women from 2010 to 2019.

The gynecologist is accused of performing dozens of unnecessary hysterectomies and removing ovaries and fallopian tubes over a nine-year period in Suffolk, Portsmouth and Chesapeake.

In their closing arguments, U.S. Attorney Elizabeth Yusi told the jury that the longtime Chesapeake gynecologist broke patient's trust and was greedy. Yusi told the jury that Dr. Perwaiz needed money to support a lavish lifestyle full of expensive cars, fur coats and $800,000 in shopping charges.

The prosecution said Perwaiz had a scheme, which included falsifying due dates, inducing women early, making up false symptoms and cancer scares to progress surgery and performing diagnostic tests with broken equipment.

The prosecution said it was all in an effort to bill insurance companies to get rich.

They said the doctor did 41% more surgeries than his peers, according the the insurance companies. The prosecution asked the jury to remember that this is not the first time he's been charged with these crimes, and that he lost his privileges at one hospital in the 1980s for doing unnecessary surgeries.

The defense, led by Attorney Larry Woodward, countered and asked why over a 40-year career in medicine did no nurse, doctor or office staff member blow the whistle.

Perwaiz did admit to changing medical records on the stand, but his attorney said his office staff all watched him and knew about it.

The defense attorney said if it was a con; Perwaiz would have hid it and destroyed a paper trail.

Related: Defense rests in case of Chesapeake OBGYN accused of performing unnecessary surgeries

The defense closed by reiterating that his trial is just a small scope of the tens of thousands of patients Perwaiz has treated over four decades, and that he was even reinstated on his duties after losing his privileges.

They said they wouldn't put Perwaiz on the stand.

The jury must now come to an unanimous guilty or not guilty verdict in this case. They must comb through 8,000 documents submitted as evidence.