FORMER York psychiatrist Michael Haslam has revealed how he once liked to dress up in women's clothing - and even gave himself the pseudonym Victoria.

The disgraced consultant, who served three years for indecently assaulting former patients, was speaking frankly in his autobiography Close To The Wind, in which he also continued to strongly protest his innocence of the criminal convictions.

He said he had occasionally tried on women's clothing as a teenager and enjoyed the experience. He said he had had a continuing interest in gender issues, and had the opportunity through contacts at the Gender Trust to "experiment a little myself in the other role, which I much enjoyed".

He claimed the insights he obtained were valuable in his gender work as a psychiatrist.

He revealed he had attended functions organised by the Beaumont Society, which worked to provide support and promote social acceptance for people with "gender transitions." He said: "I chose the pseudonym Victoria! I don't know why!"

His contacts led to a professional involvement with members of the Association of Marital and Sexual Therapists and a section of his psychosexual clinic in York became devoted to the needs of transsexual and transvestite clients.

Elsewhere in the book, Haslam, of Crayke, near Easingwold, revealed how he was "gobsmacked" when a jury at Leeds Crown Court found him guilty of the indecent assault charges in 2003. "The judge looked a little surprised too."

Haslam said he still believed he had committed no criminal act. "Three years for overfamiliarity during an examination? Was this justice?" he asked.

He also slated the inquiry ordered by the Government into the way the NHS handled complaints against him, branding it an "inevitable whitewash and sop to the masses," which had cost the taxpayer £3.2 million.