R (on the application of S) v Swindon Borough Council and another
Case date: 04 May 2001
Mr S was charged with several counts of sexually abusing K, the daughter of his live-in partner. At the trial, he was acquitted on four of the seven charges. The jury was unable to agree on the other three. No retrial was ordered.
In the meantime, Mr S started a relationship with J, who had two daughters aged 11 and 7. They wanted to live together. However, the father of J’s children went to social services, expressing concern at his children having contact with Mr S.
Social services thought that K’s allegations were highly credible. They thought that the allegations had to be believed, which meant there was a need to consider the prospect of Mr S interfering with other children. They also needed to take any necessary steps to protect those children. However, they concluded that any action about J’s children would have to be decided in the future.
The second defendants, the county council, were responsible for ensuring the promotion of the children’s welfare, and protecting them against risk, under section 47 of the Children Act 1989.
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