A man and woman have pleaded not guilty at the Old Bailey on Friday to the female genital mutilation (FGM) of a three-year-old girl.
The 43-year-old male from Ghana and the 36-year-old woman from Uganda, who live in London, were jointly accused of the offence under the FGM Act 2003 on two counts — one of carrying out the FGM and the second on failing to protect the child from the risk of FGM, reports Sky News.
The pair, who cannot be named for legal reasons, have also been charged with 10 other offences between them.
The man is accused of possessing indecent images of a child, possessing extreme pornographic images, and of publishing obscene videos.
The woman is accused of possessing an extreme pornographic image, publishing extreme videos, and distributing indecent images of children.
The Ugandan appeared in court and the Ghanaian via video link to confirm their names and to enter their pleas.
Judge Ann Molyneux QC remanded them in custody ahead of another hearing on October 9th.
The trial related to the FGM charges is set to open on January 14th, 2019, and is expected to last between two and three weeks. The second trial related to the other charges is set for February and is anticipated to last less than one week.
This is only the third FGM case to come to court since the abuse practice was made illegal in the UK more than 30 years ago. To date, there have been no convictions.
Breitbart London reported in July that 4,495 new FGM cases were reported in England last year, more than one every two hours.