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Child abuse

Some of the primary legislation

Some of our recent notable cases

London Borough of Islington v Al Alas and Wray (2012)
Represented a father accused of causing the death of his baby son by shaking. Both parents were acquitted of any wrong doing. Found that the cause of the baby’s death has actually been vitamin D deficiency, rickets, which led to infection, subdural haemorrhage (SDH), retinal haemorrhage and hypoxic ischaemic encephalopathy. The baby, suffering from undiagnosed congenital rickets, therefore was prone to fractures and infections.
[2012] EWHC 865 (Fam) 19/4/2012
Ian Peddie QC & Chris McWatters

A Local Authority v A & B & C & D (2011)
Care proceedings. Failure to follow guidance issued by the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health left serious evidential gaps in the courts’ ability to assess the likelihood of sexual abuse in a pre-pubertal child. Need for the medical profession to follow the Guidance, in all but the most exceptional cases, re-stated.
[2011] EWHC 231 (Fam) 11/2/2011
Sorrel Dixon

Hertfordshire County Council v E and R (2010) (no link available)
Represented 20-year-old boy who allegedly sexually abused younger sister over a period of months when aged 12. He was joined as an Intervener in Care proceedings against Mother relating to younger siblings. As part of case we applied to re-open earlier hearing in which Mother’s partner allegedly sexually abused him,. After 7 week hearing and detailed cross-examination of two child psychiatrists, teachers, social workers etc, the local authority withdrew the allegation of sexual abuse by him against sister.
HHJ Wright at Watford County Court (Sitting as a High Ct Judge)
Ian Peddie QC

Re W (Children) (2010)
Regarding the oral evidence of children and its place in care proceedings cases.
[2010] EWCA Civ 57 9/2/2010. Reported at [2010] 1 FCR 365.
Maggie Jones

A Local Authority v S (2009)
Case concerned expert evidence surrounding allegations of baby-shaking. Judgment found factual errors and predjudice in the evidence provided by experts.
[2009] EWHC 2115 (Fam) 8/5/2009. Reported at (2010) 1 FLR 1560
Sorrel Dixon

(1) Haringey LBC (2) Hackney LBC v Mrs S & Ors (2006) (no link)
Care arrangements for a child whose parent was suspected of assault and willful neglect in respect of ritual abuse
[2006] EWHC 2001 25/7/06. Reported at (2007) 1 FLR 387.
Jo Delahunty QC

K (Children) (2004)
Non-accidental injuries and identification of perpetrators. Appeal against orders freeing children for adoption until identification of perpetrators established.
[2004] EWCA Civ 1181 27/8/04. Reported at (2005) 1 FLR 285
Alison Grief

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