A longtime Laurel County doctor charged with taking a teenage girl from Kentucky to Missouri for sex has had his license suspended.
Ashu T. Joshi moved from London to St. Louis about two years ago, but had kept his license to practice in Kentucky.
The Kentucky Board of Medical Licensure issued an emergency order suspending Joshi from practicing in the state based on the Missouri charges. The order was made public Jan. 7.
Joshi, who is in his mid-40s, attended medical school in India and is a specialist in internal medicine, according to KBML records.
He applied to work at a clinic in Jackson County in 2000, and later worked in London from 2001 until sometime in 2016, state records show.
A federal grand jury indicted him last October on charges of persuading a girl under the age of 17 to make explicit images of herself with an iPhone and send them to him; transporting her from Kentucky to Missouri to have sex with her; and distributing pornographic images of the girl.
Court documents say that Joshi and the girl exchanged hundreds of photos and videos, some showing the teen nude by herself and with Joshi, and investigators said he got her pregnant at age 16, according to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.
An officer in St. Louis said police began investigating because of pornographic images the two exchanged over Facebook and also because of messages that included discussions of sex and marriage, the newspaper reported.
Public documents don’t include the girl’s name or where she is from in Kentucky.
The KBML order cited reports that Joshi met the girl while her mother was one of his patients.
The girl wanted to talk to Joshi about becoming a doctor. They allegedly developed a sexual relationship after the girl did some baby-sitting for Joshi, according to the KBML order.
Joshi committed the crimes cited in the indictment between March 1 and Oct. 10 last year, the document charged.
Joshi has pleaded not guilty to the charges.
Louisville attorney J. Fox DeMoisey, who represents Joshi before the state Board of Medical Licensure, said Friday that Joshi will contest the board’s suspension order and move to dismiss its complaint.
There was no reason for the suspension because Joshi does not practice in Kentucky and can’t travel to the state under the terms of his pre-trial release, DeMoisey said.
DeMoisey said he thinks the board issued the order for the sake of appearances.
“It doesn’t mean anything, but it looks good,” he said.