Social Workers ‘Seize Unborn Baby From the WOMB’ After Mother Has Panic Attack


A pregnant woman had her unborn baby removed from her body by social services while visiting England for a work training trip.

The Italian was sedated after suffering a mental breakdown and woke to find her baby daughter had been removed by Caesarean section and taken away by social workers.

She claims to have made a full recovery but her child, now aged 15 months, is still in the care of social services in Essex.

The alarming case has developed into an international legal row.

Liberal Democrat MP John Hemming, who plans to raise the issue in Parliament this week, said: “I have seen a number of cases of abuses of people’s rights in the family courts, but this has to be one of the more extreme.”

The woman, who cannot be named for legal reasons, flew to England in July 2012 for a two-week Ryanair training course at Stansted Airport, Essex.

She suffered a panic attack when she couldn’t find passports for her two daughters, who were staying with her mother in Italy.

She called in police who arrived at her airport hotel room in a short time later.

Officers spoke to a relative and discovered the woman had a “bipolar” condition and hadn’t been taking her medication.

The police reportedly told her she was being taken to hospital to “make sure that the baby was OK”.

Instead she was transported to a psychiatric hospital, restrained and sectioned under the Mental Health Act.

It is claimed Essex social services then obtained a High Court order for birth to be enforced by way of caesarean section.

Five weeks later the woman was told she could not have any breakfast and was then forcibly sedated.

She woke up in a different hospital to find her baby had been removed while she was unconscious.

She later learnt that a High Court judge, Mr Justice Mostyn, had given social workers permission to arrange for the child to be delivered. It is not clear why birth was not allowed to occur naturally.

The woman was escorted back to Italy without her baby.

She has now resumed taking her medication and is currently fighting a legal battle for her daughter’s return.

In February she attended Chelmsford Crown Court where a judge agreed her condition had improved.

But he ruled the child must be placed for adoption because of the risk she may relapse.

The High Court in Rome has expressed outrage at what has been done to an Italian citizen “habitually resident” in Italy.

But the judge there concluded that British courts have jurisdiction.

Lawyers representing the woman say social services should have handed care of the child to their Italian counterparts.

Solicitor Brendan Fleming said: “I have never heard of anything like this in all my 40 years in the job.

“I can understand if someone is very ill that they may not be able to consent to a medical procedure, but a forced caesarean is unprecedented.

“If there were concerns about the care of this child by an Italian mother, then the better plan would have been for the authorities here to have notified social services in Italy and for the child to have been taken back there.”

He added today: “We remain committed to fighting for our clients and shall fight tooth and nail to help mother be re-united with her baby.”

The woman is also said to be upset that social workers want to place her daughter in care in Britain.

A family friend has offered to look after the child but social workers ruled this was unacceptable because there is no “blood tie”.

An Essex County Council spokesman said: “The council does not comment on the circumstances of ongoing individual cases involving vulnerable people and children.”