A Winnipeg court has begun hearing the case of a former doctor who fled Canada after being charged with sexually assaulting a teenage patient.


Walid Abdelhamid is accused of sexually assaulting a teenage patient in Winnipeg. He pleaded not guilty to the charge on Tuesday, as his trial got underway. (Winnipeg Police Service)

Walid Abdelhamid, 32, pleaded not guilty on Tuesday morning, as his trial got underway.

Abdelhamid was working as a medical doctor at Winnipeg's Health Sciences Centre when he was charged with assaulting a teenage boy in 2009.

The Crown alleges that the assaults happened in the boy's room at the Children's Hospital, which is part of the HSC, on two occasions in June of that year.

A publication ban prevents media from reporting certain details that could reveal the boy's identity.

Abdelhamid made headlines following his arrest, when he was released from custody on bail but did not show up for his next court appearance.

An international warrant was issued for his arrest, and Abdelhamid was taken into custody in August 2010 while travelling through an airport in Crete, Greece.

On April 7, 2011, his extradition was approved by Greek authorities and Winnipeg police travelled to Athens to escort Abdelhamid back to the city.

Police officer testifies

The Crown's first witness to testify on Tuesday was Det. Nicholas Doyon, a member of the Winnipeg Police Service's sex crimes unit.

Doyon told the court that two officers videotaped an interview with the alleged victim in his room, after police were called in by a supervising nurse to investigate the boy's allegations.

Doyon testified that the officers received permission from medical staff to conduct the interview.

The court was shown part of the interview footage, as well as police video of the boy identifying Abdelhamid from a series of photographs showing 10 different people.

The trial has adjourned for the day but is expected to resume on Wednesday.