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Tuesday, 16 October 2018

Father who attacked partner should be given no information on children - Judge

Written by Brian Farmer

A man handed a three-and-a-half-year jail term after attacking his partner should be given no information about their two daughters unless one of them dies, a High Court judge has decided.

Mr Justice Keehan was told that the man had been assessed as "high risk" by social workers after mounting a "serious sustained assault" on his children's mother.

The judge heard that the woman was extremely vulnerable, wanted to sever all links with the man, and had already obtained an "indefinite restraining order".

He concluded that the only information the man should get about either girl was if one, or both, died.

Detail of the case has been outlined in a written ruling published by Mr Justice Keehan following a private hearing in the Family Division of the High Court in London.

The judge has not identified anyone involved.

He said the girls were both aged under six.

The woman had applied for a series of orders aimed at protecting her and the children - and the judge approved her application.

Mr Justice Keehan ruled that the children should live with their mother and that their forenames and surnames could be changed.

The judge also barred the man from contacting the girls and ruled that no information should be passed on about them while they were alive.

He said he had considered allowing the man to be notified if one of the girls suffered a life-threatening illness or injury.

But he said he had decided against such a move.

"I considered it almost inhumane that the father should merely be told, sadly and tragically, that one or both of the children had died, and that he should not be notified if the children sadly suffered a life-threatening illness or injuries," said Mr Justice Keehan in his ruling.

"However, I am persuaded given the extreme vulnerability of the mother, that were she to have to endure the awful event of one or both of the girls suffering a life-threatening illness or sustaining a life-threatening injury and that she then had to contemplate arranging for that information to be passed to the father, it would simply be too much for her and therefore, would have an adverse impact upon the well-being of the girls.

"In my judgment this is not a risk the court should take because it is not in the welfare best interests of the children."

The judge added: "Accordingly, the information to be provided to the father about the girls is to be limited to the possible future event where, very sadly and tragically, one or other of them died."

Copyright (c) Press Association Ltd. 2018, All Rights Reserved. Picture (c) Kate Collins / PA Wire.