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Thursday, November 26, 1998 Published at 17:47 GMT


'Mutilated' genitals prompt large pay-out

Judge commended the settlement

A former British Airways pilot who claimed his life was destroyed by surgery to his penis has settled for damages in excess of £800,000.

James Williams, aged 42, had launched a claim for £3m in the High Court against consultant surgeon John Pryor.

He alleged Mr Pryor was negligent during surgery.

On the fourth day of the hearing in London, Mr Williams' counsel Nicholas Leviseur told Judge Kenny: "I am happy to be able to say that the parties have reached terms."

His honour Judge Kenny QC said: "I think the parties are extremely well advised and I commend the settlement."

The terms of the settlement were not disclosed during the court hearing.

'Most appalling injuries', Later, a statement issued by Mr Williams' solicitor Laurence Vick revealed: "My client James Williams found it too traumatic to continue his case against Mr John Pryor and has agreed to accept a settlement in excess of £800,000."

He suffered the "most appalling injuries" as a result of what he understood was to be a straightforward procedure carried out to repair damage caused by the unnecessary circumcision Mr Williams underwent as a baby, said Mr Vick.

"These events resulted in the loss of his career as an airline pilot after he had to be medically retired by British Airways.

"It had been his life-long ambition to fly and he is understandably bitter at this unforeseen outcome."

'Recognised complications'

The last four years had been an immense strain and he had faced "humiliation and trauma" pursuing the claim, but he did not regret taking legal action.

A statement issued later on Mr Pryor's behalf by the Medical Defence Union stated: "Mr Williams suffered recognised complications of complex surgery. This has undoubtedly caused severe personal distress to Mr Williams and I regret the consequences of the surgery.

"I did not have the opportunity to give evidence in court, but I maintain that this complex surgery was performed properly and competently.

"The complications which arose post-operatively were, sadly, recognised complications of such surgery.

"The MDU and I hope that the agreed sum will enable Mr Williams to rebuild his life and to put this episode behind him."

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'Mutilated' man sues over op

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