October 2, 2023


A Passion for Better Health

Toronto dentist loses licence over affair with his patient

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Dentist Amir Haydarian doesn’t have much to smile about these days.

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The Toronto dentist had his licence revoked by the Royal College of Dental Surgeons this week after he was found guilty of professional misconduct for having sex with a patient. Married at the time with four children, Haydarian claimed that he’d obtained a religious divorce in Iran by proxy late one night and then wed his patient in a private Islamic marriage with a bouquet of white roses and three holy books.

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The college’s disciplinary tribunal didn’t buy it, finding evidence of his supposed divorce wasn’t “persuasive, credible, or reliable.”

And even if true, “the uncontroverted evidence before the panel was that the member had not obtained a divorce from Person C in Ontario. Without such a divorce, the member could not have entered into a legally binding marriage with Person A on the night of Oct. 19, (2018) as he alleged.”

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About the same time as the complaint before the college, the beleaguered dentist was also charged in 2020 with numerous counts of sexual assault and sexual interference after the same patient went to police. All the charges were withdrawn last year after prosecutors had doubts about her credibility.

Haydarian is appealing the college’s decision.

“Dr. Haydarian believed that he had a legal divorce under Islamic law and had entered into a valid legal marriage, again under Islamic law,” wrote his lawyer Symon Zucker in an email.  “A ground of appeal also includes that the panel failed to take into account the complainant’s lack of credibility, as found in criminal proceedings where she made allegations against Dr. Haydarian and charges were withdrawn. “

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Identified only as Person A, she came to the Mount Pleasant Dental Centre in June 2018 and told the tribunal that Haydarian would play love songs in Farsi during her appointments and touch her face and breasts.

On Sept. 6, 2018, she said, he came over to her home while her kids were at school and professed his love. He asked her to marry him and told her he was divorced, she said, and gave her his mother’s ring. She wanted a Christian ceremony and she said he agreed

Their sexual relationship began that day, she insisted, and lasted until they separated in 2020.

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According to the decision, the couple were together so often late into the night at her home and in his apartment above his dental office that his wife hired a private investigator who discovered the affair.

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Haydarian promised that after he travelled to Iran — he was gone from Oct. 21 to Nov. 4, 2018 — to obtain her family’s blessing, they could be married in a church, she said, but there was never any kind of wedding. While he was away, she discovered she was pregnant — their child was born in July 2019.

The dentist told a very different story: he claimed they didn’t have sexual intercourse until Oct. 19, 2018, the day he says he obtained an Islamic divorce from his wife by calling his brother in Iran — at 11:30 p.m. Tehran time — to act as his proxy with a local notary. He then entered into a private “temporary Islamic marriage ceremony” that night with Person A. He considered her his spouse, so he argued it wasn’t sexual abuse.

But what about the timing of her pregnancy? Haydarian testified they must have conceived on either October 19 or 20, 2018, immediately after he said their sexual relationship began.

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The panel wasn’t convinced there had been an Islamic divorce or wedding — the divorce certificate wasn’t certified and even if genuine, they said it wouldn’t be recognized under Canadian law — his wife hadn’t even been notified about it.

It also didn’t make sense, the tribunal wrote, that after insisting on a Christian ceremony, Person A would suddenly agree to an Islamic wedding, with not a photo, text or email to family about the supposed event.

They also found he’d co-signed a mortgage with another patient in 2011 for $475,000.

Haydarian’s certificate of registration was revoked, effective March 20 — leaving the cheating dentist without a practice, his lover or his marriage.

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