A woman who suffered severe head injury from a past violent rape was ‘married off’ by her father for money in a deal to improve the husband’s UK immigration prospects, a judge has ruled.
After analysing the case at a hearing in a specialist court dedicated to issues relating to people who lack the mental capacity to make decisions, Mr Justice Baker concluded the Islamic ceremony was “arranged entirely” by the woman’s father and husband.
Telling the Court of Protection that the woman’s father had spent his daughter’s money “for his own purposes” and with no intention of repaying her, the judge said the woman was “unquestionably married under the influence of her father”.
Stating that the ceremony at Northampton Islamic Centre — which was solemnised by an imam, according to the Oxford Mail — took place at a time when the woman was “vulnerable to influence”, the judge concluded that the marriage is not valid under UK law.
Commander Balhatchet's letter about FGM being “nuanced” seems broadly in line with his comments on police only referring 5% of reported ‘honour’ crimes to prosecutors: “‘Honour’ based abuse is a complex crime…” https://t.co/CgL3zYx1UY
— Jack Montgomery ن (@JackBMontgomery) January 19, 2018
After hearing evidence from a number of witnesses, including medical specialists and an expert in Islamic law, Mr. Baker said the “primary motive” of the husband in the case was to “achieve an improved immigration status”.
Asserting he believed the woman’s father’s motives were “more difficult to discern”, the judge said in a written ruling: “I conclude that he acted partly to assist [the husband] in his immigration application but also because he thought it would be right for [his daughter], and the family as a whole, for her to be married.”
An investigation conducted for Channel 4 last year suggested a large majority of marriages involving Muslim wives in Britain are not valid in UK law, with almost two-thirds of married Muslim women reporting being wed in Nikah ceremonies — leaving them unprotected in family courts.
The survey of 923 women, which was carried out by female Muslim researchers, also revealed there to be a significant number of women living in polygamous situations — 37 per cent of whom admitted being forced into the arrangement against their will.