A dispensing optician based in Cambridgeshire has been erased from the GOC register following a fitness to practise investigation.

Barry Church was found by a GOC Fitness to Practise Committee to be impaired in his practise because of misconduct related to his conviction of theft and failing to engage with a GOC investigation.

Church was employed as store manager and was able to issue refunds, which he simulated to cover up his theft of money from his store’s cash register. He was handed a suspended sentence of 26 week’s imprisonment for theft by employee on January 6th at Cambridgeshire Magistrates' Court. Church also repeatedly refused to engage with the GOC’s investigation, leading the Committee to determine that it would be in the public interest to proceed with the hearing in his absence.

Having considered financial penalties and temporary suspension the Committee decided to punish Church with erasure, citing his 'sustained and premeditated dishonest when in a position of trust.'