“A COVERT and very cunning” Oxford doctor has gone on trial accused of sex offences against patients.

Yenugula Srinivas, who was a locum GP, denies 11 allegations against him.

Peter Coombe, prosecuting, told jurors at Oxford Crown Court yesterday the 41-year-old abused his position to “trick women to undress”.

Srinivas, of Church Road, Sandford-on-Thames, denies four counts of sexual assault and seven serious sexual assaults alleged to have taken place in 2008.

Mr Coombe told the jury: “The prosecution aren’t asking you to decide whether he’s a competent or incompetent doctor.

“What we say is he wasn’t incompetent at all, he was using or abusing his position as a doctor to trick women into allowing him to undress them and touch them under a smokescreen that some medical procedure was required.”

Mr Coombe said the defendant “did not behave in a blatantly predatory way” by “trying to kiss, or do something worse” to patients, but that “he used the cover of clinical necessity to enable him to satisfy his sexual urges”.

Jurors heard Srinivas carried out genital, breast and rectal examinations that were “unnecessary” or could not be clinically justified.

The charges relate to eight women, who cannot be named for legal reasons.

Mr Coombe added: “This was a covert and very cunning man who behaved in a way he could do his best to cover his tracks.”

Detailing the charge relating to one woman who was given an internal examination by Srinivas in 2008, Mr Coombe said: “It was right to do an examination but the one Srinivas conducted wasn’t done in the right way so had absolutely no clinical value whatsoever.”

Of another of the allegations, he said a rectal exam was conducted with the patient on her back, when the “correct way” to do it would have been with her on her side.

He added: “It was not for clinical reasons but again for his own sexual motivation, because it was done in wholly the wrong way to get any form of clinical result.”

The trial is expected to last for three weeks.