An NHS doctor who had a crush on TV explorer Levison Wood and left him fearing for his safety with a “relentless” stalking campaign has been jailed for more than a year.
The former paratrooper said the unwanted attentions of paediatrician Dr Fiza Jabeen left him “constantly looking over his shoulder” and forced him to put his family home up for sale, after she bombarded him with lewd messages and travelled across the country to see him face-to-face.
Mr Wood, who appeared in Channel 4 series Walking with Elephants, said he was “genuinely fearful for my safety” when Jabeen approached him as he walked his dog and asked to accompany him home for a cup of tea.
She was flouting a string of court orders banning her from contacting the TV star, leading him to conclude: “She will stop at nothing to get what she wants.”
At Kingston crown court this afternoon, Judge Georgina Kent sentenced Jabeen to 13 months in prison, telling her: “Stalking and harassment have extremely detrimental and negative effects on victims, their families and friends.
“It interferes with their mental wellbeing and ability to get on with their lives without fearing someone is going to pop up at any time, with the risk of causing them harm or embarassment.”
Prosecutor Alex Slater said Jabeen, 36, a paediatrician at Chelsea and Westminster Hospital until October last year, started her pursuit of Mr Wood in April this year with comments on social media, emails, and “messages of a sexual nature”.
She was issued with a restraining order and handed a suspended prison sentence to try to stop the stalking campaign, but continued to contact Mr Wood’s friends and family and on July 10 travelled from her home in Birmingham to where the explorer lives in Surrey.
Mr Slater said Jabeen used Companies House to get the address, loitering in a nearby park when it was clear he was not home.
“He saw her when walking his dog, it was about 1pm and he recognised Ms Jabeen because she has sent him a number of photos of herself”, said the prosecutor.
“She approached him and said something like ‘I’m Fiza Jabeen’. He knew who she was and told her he knew who she was, and said she shouldn’t be near him.
“She asked Mr Wood if she could enter his address for a cup of tea and to use his Internet. Unsurprisingly, Mr Wood told her in no uncertain terms she would not be allowed to go to his address and he was calling the police.”
In an impact statement, the TV personality – who made his name with documentaries and books about his journeys across Africa, Asia and South America – suggested Jabeen needs mental health intervention, saying: “I do not feel anything will stop this lady.”
“I constantly have to look over my shoulder”, he said, revealing he worries Jabeen will break into his home and physically attack him or his family.
“When I found her loitering around outside my house I was genuinely fearful for my safety”, he added. “She is obsessed, her actions demonstrate she will stop at nothing to get what she wants.
“It has got to a point where I have now put my house up for sale so she can’t trace me.”
Fiona Dunkley, representing Jabeen, said the qualified doctor gave up work to care for her mother who lost her battle with cancer in March.
She said Jabeen, a devout Muslim until recently, has never been in a relationship with a man and described her pursuit of Mr Wood as “teenagery crush”.
“She doesn’t know how to handle emotions, having not had an emotional attachment with a man”, she said. “She felt quite isolated…and reached out for help from the person to whom she had a crush.”
Jabeen, from Birmingham, admitted harassment, stalking, and breaching a suspended prison sentence. The judge imposed a ten year restraining order banning her from contacting Mr Wood or going to the area where he lives.