'Twin-Swap' Couple Guilty Of Child Cruelty

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'Twin-Swap' Couple Guilty Of Child Cruelty

Post by HotlipsHealy on Tue 26 Jul - 22:26

6:24pm UK, Tuesday July 26, 2011
Mike McCarthy, North of England correspondent
A couple who concealed the neglect of their baby daughter by showing social workers her healthy twin sister have been found guilty of child cruelty and neglect.

Mohammed Karolia, 29, and his wife Nafisa, 22, inflicted more than 20 injuries on the seven-month-old baby including a fractured rib, arm and leg.
The child, known as Girl M, also suffered two brain bleeds, bruises to the face and bleeding to the eyes. The girl later died after she started struggling to breathe.
The injuries were described at Preston Crown Court as "a battery of non-accidental injuries".
A jury heard that, whenever social workers or health visitors called, the parents are believed to have shown them Girl M's uninjured sister and made up excuses for why their other child was not at home.
Both parents were making a concerted effort to keep Girl M out of the way of the nurse and the social worker so that they would not suspect the ill-treatment she was suffering.
Joe Boyd, prosecuting the Karolias
The court heard that Mohammed Karolia, of Blackburn, Lancashire, noticed one morning that his daughter was struggling to breathe.
The baby was taken to hospital but died of bronchopneumonia. The couple were not held responsible for the deaths.
Joe Boyd, prosecuting, told the court the injuries had been wilfully inflicted.
"The sheer number of injuries, the number of different and separate incidents there must have been to cause them, the timescale from months to hours before death in which they were caused and the lack of any plausible explanation from the parents as to how they were caused, leads inexplicably to the conclusion that they were inflicted deliberately," he said.
Mr Boyd added: "Both parents were making a concerted effort to keep Girl M out of the way of the nurse and the social worker so that they would not suspect the ill-treatment she was suffering."
He said the alleged identity swap was uncovered by discrepancies in the head, weight and height measurements previously taken from Girl M and her sister.
"Growth charts for both twins make it clear that the parents have at some stage swapped the babies," Mr Boyd told the jury.
"They have very probably done so to seek to conceal the mounting injuries being suffered by the child who died - always the bigger twin but, for some reason, rejected and abused by them."
Mohammed Karolia, a taxi driver, and his wife denied the charges of child cruelty and neglect.
Remanding the couple in custody, Mr Justice Irwin told them: "You will both inevitably face considerable prison sentences.
"As you know, this was a bad case of child cruelty. However, I want to know as much as possible about it before deciding the length of sentence."
He adjourned the case for pre-sentence and psychiatric reports. The hearing will take place on a date to be fixed in October.



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