Friday, February 04, 2005

Scams and scamming scammers III

How would you try to convince the military that you were unfit for duty? A Norwegian physician tried this:
The doctor rubbed sour cream in his hair, poured sticky liqueur in his shoes, spilled beer on his clothes and sat in a closet smoking 40 cigarettes at once in a bid to convince the military that he wasn't fit mentally for service, the Fredrikstad Blad newspaper reported Thursday.

And just to be sure he looked and felt his worst, he stayed awake for two days before his physical, the newspaper said.

As part of Norway's compulsory military service, veterans, such as the doctor, can be called back for refresher training or longer service.

"I used a made-up life story about how things had gone downhill from being a student in medical school to be being down and out," the doctor told the newspaper on condition his name not be published.
The ruse worked too well:
He was so convincing that the military doctor alerted the national health authority about the man they had licensed to work as physician.

An analysis of his records, however, showed that not only was he not insane, but he had received high marks from his patients, the newspaper said. Now, the doctor is facing likely disciplinary action from the military and the medical board.

In a letter to the Norwegian Board of Health, obtained by the newspaper, the doctor claimed his behavior was no worse than that of many patients.

"It is well known that the information a patient gives his doctor seldom is based on reality," the letter said.
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