Re X (wardship) (foreign proceedings: child's evidence)

Family proceedings – Orders in family proceedings. There was no presumption against a ward giving evidence in criminal or civil proceedings merely because those proceedings took place in another jurisdiction. In allowing an application for permission for a 12-year-old boy (who was a ward of the court) to travel to India to give evidence at his mother's trial for the alleged murder of his father, the Family Division ruled that a balancing exercise was necessary, and that the essential test was whether justice could be done to all the parties without further questioning of the child. The court held that, while giving evidence in his mother's criminal trial was not a risk-free course for the child, it did not outweigh the advantages to him of doing so. In so ruling, it considered the principles to be applied by the court when making a decision about a ward giving evidence in a trial outside the jurisdiction of England and Wales.

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