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DUBAI: Man posing as top U.S. plastic surgeon arrested in Dubai

April 8, 2010 |  9:46 am

Bilde Posing as a renowned U.S. plastic surgeon, Steven Moos managed to lure scores of patients into his Dubai villa with rosy promises of beauty at a low cost, according to officials.

In his underground clinic, he allegedly nipped and tucked and performed various delicate cosmetic surgery procedures on customers lying on top of his kitchen table. Some local media reports say the conditions were so primitive that Moos, apparently lacking adequate surgical equipment, threw removed fat from liposuction operations into a cooking pot.

The Dubai police arrested Moos in February and charged him with endangering the lives of patients, impersonating a physician and carrying out unlicensed activities, reported the United Arab Emirates-based English newspaper the National.

Several of Moos' patients are said to be suffering from serious complications.

Dr. Jeehan Qadir, executive director of the American Academy of Cosmetic Surgery in Dubai, said she has seen at least two women who went under Moos' knife.

"There is one lady who has had about 10 procedures on her lips by this man. It is all cuts," she told the National.

“These women trusted him to do a good job. We are all very upset about what happened. Cosmetic surgery is something people think very hard about and this man has abused their trust," she added.

According to officials at the Dubai Health Authority, Moos was impersonating and using the good reputation of Dr. Steven Hopping, a top cosmetic surgeon based in Washington, D.C. Hopping performs a few surgeries per year at the American Academy of Cosmetic Surgery Hospital in Dubai.

The scam emerged when a patient in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) sent Hopping a fake business card with his name on it, asking if it really was him. Hopping immediately contacted the clinic in Dubai, which then notified the Dubai authorities.

Aside from facing legal charges in Dubai, Moos also is wanted in the U.S. by the FBI and Interpol on charges of drug trafficking and crimes against life and health, among others.

The online newspaper the Oregonian says that Moos previously worked as a doctor in the town of Tigard in Oregon and then fled the country after police found cocaine, marijuana and other illegal drugs at his million-dollar home, which he shares with his wife and four children.

According to the report, Moos got into trouble in 2000 when the Oregon Board of Medical Examiners fined him several thousands of dollars and put him on probation for 10 years for prescribing medications, including Viagra, over the Internet to people whom he'd never examined. Federal prosecutors also accused him of trying to import mislabeled human growth hormone from China.

Moos' medical license was revoked in 2003, and the authorities issued an arrest warrant for him in 2004 when he and his family disappeared, the report added.

His arrest in Dubai, however, does not mark the first time the Dubai authorities have busted bogus doctors.

In February, the Dubai police raided an illegal plastic surgery clinic that was being run out of an apartment in a crackdown on underground cosmetic salons.

When the squad barged onto the premises, they found unlicensed surgeons performing surgery on patients on makeshift beds. Surgical equipment was kept alongside with kitchen utensils in the apartment, reported the National.

-- Alexandra Sandels in Beirut

Photo: Steven Moos, who posed as a top U.S. plastic surgeon and who also is wanted by the FBI, has been arrested in Dubai. Credit: FBI