OROVILLE, Calif. - A San Francisco doctor faces felony charges for faking evidence to get out of a speeding ticket.
Dr. Nickesh Shah, 46, of San Francisco appeared in Butte County court Thursday and waived his right to a preliminary hearing on the charges of preparing false evidence and offering false evidence at a court trial. By waiving that right, he acknowledged there was enough evidence to send his case to a felony jury trial.
Shah was pulled over on April 3, 2013 by a California Highway Patrol officer for driving 95 mph on Highway 99. Shah told the officer he was on his way to a medical emergency.
The officer called the clinic to confirm, but was told the doctor was simply late for work. Shah was cited for speeding.
Two weeks after being pulled over, authorities allege Shah submitted a fake letter to the Butte County District Attorney's Office from the clinic claiming he really was rushing to an emergency.
At a trial on November 22, the letter was presented to the court as evidence. However, the District Attorney's Office proved the letter had been fabricated. The doctor was found guilty of speeding and fined $500.
In January, felony charges of preparing false evidence and offering false evidence into trial were filed by the DA's office.
Shah will be in court exactly one year after the initial citation to determine the dates of the felony trial.
District Attorney Mike Ramsey said, "The doctor lied his way from a simple infraction and fine into a felony and potentially three years in county prison."