The UK regulator of dental practice, the General Dental Council (GDC), has successfully prosecuted a woman for unlawfully holding herself out as being prepared to practise dentistry - namely tooth whitening.
On 5 August 2015 Charlene Bell was found guilty at Newcastle upon Tyne Magistrates' Court of holding herself out as being prepared to practise dentistry, contrary to Section 38 (1) and (2) of the Dentists Act 1984. The magistrates convicted Ms Bell in her absence following a formal indication that she wanted to plead guilty to the offence.
The offence took place on 20 January 2015 at Celebeauty Smile White Spa, Arch 8, Forth Street, Newcastle Upon Tyne, NE1 3NZ.
Ms Bell, who claimed that she was trained by 'Lovelite', was fined £1000 and ordered to pay a £100 victim surcharge. She was also ordered to pay costs to the GDC of £2000.
The magistrates commented that they considered it an aggravating factor that Ms Bell had suggested she was a dental therapist, despite having never been registered with the GDC. The magistrates also noted that she had ignored warning letters sent to her by the GDC in 2013 and 2014.