A Pakistani couple have been fined after attempting to fly to Pakistan with their daughter.
The unnamed teenager had been made the subject of a ‘forced marriage protection order’ last year as she was thought to be at risk of coercion. But just a few months later, the family were stopped by the Police at Manchester airport, en route to Pakistan to visit dying grandparents.
The parents claimed to be unaware that they were breaching the order and believed it had in fact been rescinded, allowing the teen to travel to travel abroad if she wished.
Manchester and Salford Magistrates’ Court accepted their claims, saying there had been a serious breakdown in communication between the Police, social service and their daughter’s school. District judge Samuel Goozee told the parents:
“I have taken into account that you [the mother] were acting on information you had been given through your daughter. I don’t believe either of you were deliberately breaching this order and there is evidence before me that there has been almost a breakdown with your understanding and the other agencies.”
But the protection order remained in place, he stressed. They were fined £250, with £85 costs and a £15 surcharge.
The mother’s counsel insisted:
“It’s a miscommunication, a misunderstanding, no more than that…This is a westernised family. They are not trying to force her to marry anyone.”