Medico Legal Expert Witness Opinion


Malcolm VandenBurg is available as a medico legal expert witness giving written opinions and verbal advice to professionals and appropriate organisations.


He has a broad depth of experience in general medicine, pharmaceutical medicine, psychological medicine and pharmacology, which enables his opinion to be broad and at the same time focused on the specific issues involved.


He has been a Research Director for a major pharmaceutical company, as well as owning his own Research Consultancy which assisted the pharmaceutical industry in all matters related to pharmaceutical research, pharmaceutical registration, pharmacoepidemiology and post marketing surveillance.


He developed a particular expertise in the evaluation of adverse side affects of medication and their relevance to the clinical situation.


He is also an expert in illegal drugs of abuse, addictive behaviours, and behavioural, physical and psychological changes consequent on their use.


He was Medical Advisor to Release, a charity which assisted those involved in criminal proceedings involving illegal drugs.


He has given opinions to leading barristers and solicitors, as well as the Criminal Prosecution Service and Police Forces throughout England. He has also been instructed by the Police Federation, the UK Armed Forces and the Independent Police Complaints Commission. He has given opinions for, and appeared in criminal, civil and family matters.


In civil cases he has been involved in clinical negligence on the part of General Practitioners and hospital doctors in relation to their prescribing of prescription medicines, and the mis-dispensing of drugs by pharmacists.


He has also been involved in industrial tribunals relating to the affects of industrial chemicals and substances on behaviour and physical and mental health.


Criminal matters have involved the behavioural effects of prescription medicines and illegal substances, particularly on the ability of these substances to inhibit the formation of specific intent and negate mens rea. These have included the usual psychoactive medications used for depression, anxiety and schizophrenia. He has also given opinions on their behavioural effects, their ability to precipitate and worsen aggression and violence and motor vehicle driving.


He has been involved in trials of doctors whom have allegedly criminally assaulted patients and whom have mis-prescribed to drug addicts and falsified prescriptions so that drugs may be used by themselves. The affects of all medicines and illegal substances on driving, including alcohol, is a particular strength, as are the various reasons for failing to provide samples.




Dr. Malcolm VandenBurg offers a specialised medico legal expert witness service based upon his expertise in therapeutics, pharmaceutical medicine, pharmacology, general medicine and psychiatry.


His ability to critically analyse all aspects of an instruction, coupled with his research and data acquisition skills results in a highly professional well referenced opinion written to the standards of a regulatory submission to a drug licensing authority.


He has been instructed in both criminal and civil proceedings for both defence and prosecution as well as claimant and defendant.


His clients include the Criminal Prosecution Service, Police Authorities and many private solicitors.

Complex medical negligence cases involving prescribed medicines are a speciality.


His opinion is sought when a person's behaviour, actions, emotions or bodily feelings may be due to a prescribed medicine or an illegal substance.


Recent topics include:


* Did the prescribed medication of my client cause them to shoplift?
* Was my client Mens Rae taking into account their recent multiple drug abuse?
* Could the witness's memory have been impaired due to LSD intoxication?
* Was my client's behaviour compatible with their drink being spiked?
* Was my client's epilepsy affected by the prescription of an antidepressant?
* Are the Cocaine levels in my client's urine compatible with his drink being spiked?
* Could my client's erratic driving be due to drug induced automatism?
* Was the behaviour of the murder victim influenced by their prescribed medicine and illegal drugs?


Dr VandenBurg provides the court with practical and academic opinion as an expert witness in matters involving prescribed medication and illegal substances.


These reports are based on his experience as a pharmaceutical expert witness at the Committee on Safety of Medicines and the Federal Drug Administration in the US as well as his considerable experience with illegal substances while working for Release.


Dr VandenBurg has been instructed in the UK by many defence lawyers and barristers as well as the Criminal Prosecution Service, the Police Investigation Units and the Police Federation and the British Army.


Procedural Structure and Conditions of Service


Please click here for Dr. VandenBurg's Expert Reports Procedural Structure.

Please click here for Dr. VandenBurg's Conditions of Service.



Sample anonymised medico legal reports


Read Dr. Vandenburg's medico legal sample Report 1

Read Dr. Vandenburg's medico legal sample Report 2


Prescription Medicines


Malcolm VandenBurg has given opinions involving the behavioural affects of many prescription medicines, particularly on their ability to precipitate violent behaviour, their effects on driving, their ability to alter consciousness and precipitate abnormal dreams and hallucinations and to alter the ability to form specific intent and negate mens rea by producing automatism.


Through his experience on drug induced automatism, he has become an expert in giving evidence on automatism consequent on head injuries and epilepsy.


Opinions have been given on most of the anxiolytics and hypnotics including Valium (Diazepam) Nitrazepam, Temazepam, Xanax (Alprazolam), Clonazepam, Rohypnol (Flunitrazepam) as well as many others.


He is an expert in the Medicinal Amnesia-Automatism Syndrome (MAA) produced by benzodiazepines.


He has given opinions regarding the affect of serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) and combined serotonin and noradrenaline reuptake inhibitors (SNRIs) on criminal behaviour and violent acts including murder.


This has involved giving opinions on Fluoxetine (Prozac), Paroxetine (Seroxat), Citalopram (Cipramil and Cipralex), Venlafaxine (Efexor) and many others.


A particular strength is the psychoactive side effects of antibiotics, particularly Metronidazole and the anti malarial Mefloquine (Lariam).


He is available to give opinions on any prescription medicine, its physiological, behavioural and mood altering affects, as well as all other effects of the substance.


Illegal Drugs


Malcolm VandenBurg is an expert on the physiological and psychological affects of all illegal substances and has given opinions in relation to cocaine, heroin, cannabis (Marijuana), methadone, ecstasy, MDMA, amphetamines, solvent abuse, and many others, the affects of these substances on the perception of memory loss and violence, and their ability to negate mens rea.


He has given many opinions on the effects on driving in criminal and civil matters.


A strength is passive inhalation and absorption of illegal substances, particularly Marijuana and cocaine, as well as the pharmacokinetics of them all.


He has particular expertise in Khat (Ghat, qaat, quat) on driving and behaviour.


Sexual Health


Malcolm VandenBurg has given opinions relating to sexually transmitted disease in criminal and civil proceedings, as well as in the family court, the ability to achieve erection and orgasm as well as abnormal sexual behaviours, particularly auto eroticism and strangulation.


The affects of drugs on sexual function, both legal and illegal, have been the matter of other opinions.


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