Saturday, November 12, 2016

First ever prosecution for sex-selective abortion against an Asian family was dropped by CPS for fear of being seen as 'racist'

  • The CPS dropped a case involving an Asian woman who was pregnant
  • She claims she was told to have an abortion by her family as it was a girl 
  • But the mother felt the CPS dropped her case because of 'cultural reasons'
The Crown Prosecution Service dropped a case involving an Asian woman whose family 'pressured' her to have an abortion because they did not want to be labelled racist.

Mandy Sanghera, a human rights activist, has revealed that the mother was forced to terminate the pregnancy after her family learned she was having a girl.

The woman, who has not been named, already had a daughter and her family told her that they could not afford to have another girl. 

She then reported the incident to the police but they did not judge it to be honour-based abuse.

Mandy Sanghera (pictured) revealed that the woman felt she was forced to get an abortion
Mandy Sanghera (pictured) revealed that the woman felt she was forced to get an abortion
But the CPS eventually pursued the case and the woman decided she want to prosecute, reports The Daily Telegraph.

After investigating, the CPS did not press charges for the offence, adding that it was simply a 'family matter' and not in the public interest.

By dropping the case, they failed to secure the first conviction for sex-selective abortion in the UK. 

The husband of the pregnant woman later admitted controlling behaviour and was sent on a course following his guilty plea. 

Ms Sanghera, who advises the government about honour-based violence, told the newspaper: 'When her family found out it was a girl, she was put under a lot of emotional pressure and duress.

'She did not want to have that termination.'

She also claims the CPS failed to prosecute after deciding that the woman would not make a competent witness as she didn't have 'physical injuries'.

Ms Sanghera, who has been supporting victims of honour-based violence since 1990, said the woman felt the case was dropped because of 'cultural reasons'. 

The dropped case comes after new guidance was introduced by the government and the General Medical Council in May 2014.

It outlined that sex-selective abortion is 'unacceptable and illegal' and Ms Sanghera added that there is a 'fear of not wanting to be accused of being racist'. 

A CPS spokesman said: 'We take honour-based crime extremely seriously. "Political correctness" plays no part whatsoever in our decision making – nor does any outside influence. 

'All charging decisions are made completely independently and objectively and based solely on the Code for Crown Prosecutors. 

'We will not hesitate to bring a charge where the evidence supports the allegation and it is in the public interest to prosecute. 

'The CPS recognises that honour based violence and forced marriage are fields in which we need to improve our understanding, response, and support to victims and witnesses. 

'We have recently launched a new Honour Based Violence and Forced Marriage Action Plan, which outlines the comprehensive steps we are taking to improve our performance in this area.'  

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