Father in family law battle bugs daughter’s clothes

by Peter Magee on July 24, 2016

Rhiannon Noble

The Guardian newspaper recently published an article regarding a father in the United Kingdom who sewed listening devices into his daughter’s school blazer and raincoat to enable him to listen to private conversations between the child and a social worker.

The proceedings, in which Justice Peter Jackson in the Family Division of the High Court in London was asked to make a decision about the living arrangements of the child, who at the time was living with her father, said that the dispute was so serious that it required social services staff to become involved.

The father’s partner purchased two small recording devises which were no larger than 3cm x 1.5cm. She sewed the recording devises into the breast pocket of the child’s blazer and on occasion a further device was sewn into the child’s raincoat and used as a means to maximise the chance of picking up conversations between the child and the social worker. The father’s partner would then prepare transcripts of the relevant conversations.

The father recorded the child from November 2014 to March 2016. Justice Peter Jackson noted that “the proceedings had been ongoing for well over a year before the existence of the recordings was revealed”.

Justice Peter Jackson said that the recordings had not produced “a single piece of useful information” and had damaged relationships between adults in the child’s lives”. He further remarked that it was almost always likely to be wrong for a recording device to be placed on a child for the purpose of gathering evidence in Family Court proceedings.

At Armstrong Legal our Solicitors are experienced in dealing with a broad range of parenting matters. Contact us to schedule your appointment.

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