Dunedin doctor accused of murdering teenage girl after she threatened to expose his behaviour to his employer

A Dunedin doctor has denied murdering a teenage girl after she threatened to expose his inappropriate behaviour and end his career. 

Venod Skantha, 32, was on his final warning for serious misconduct when he allegedly murdered 16-year-old Amber-Rose Rush in 2018.

At his trial's opening on Monday, crown lawyer Richard Smith showed the prosecution text messages which show Rush was planning to go to the police.

Southern District Health Board had issued the junior doctor his final warning, and the teenager had information which jeopardised that, claims Smith.

Text messages between the pair show Skantha was supplying alcohol and drugs to minors and offering them money to have sex.

"You're preying on young kids Vinnie. What the f*** is wrong with you? You're 30 and a doctor for f***'s sake," read a message from Rush. 

"I'm going to make sure everyone knows what a sick person you are, including your work and the police."

In another message, she accused him of offering her money to have sex with him and indecently assaulting her at a party. 

Finally, she told him she would be going to the police.

"So you're serious?" Skantha replied.

"You best believe I am. I'm doing the world a favour. People like you don't deserve to walk freely," she replied.

Less than an hour after this text message, Skantha is accused of using a spare key to get inside Rush's home before slitting her throat and stabbing her in the neck six times.

She had "no chance" of surviving the injuries, the court heard.

Skantha has pleaded not guilty to Rush's murder. He is also facing four counts of threatening to kill, all of which he denies.  

The trial is scheduled to run for four weeks at the High Court at Dunedin.