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Louisa Gothard
Louisa Gothard
Senior Solicitor, Head of Family Law
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Al-Jeffery v Al-Jeffery (Vulnerable Adult: British Citizen) [2016] EWHC 2151 (Fam)
Date:6 SEP 2016
Third slide
Law Reporter
(Family Division, Holman J, 3 August 2016)

Jurisdiction – Inherent jurisdiction – 21-year-old woman held captive by father in Saudi Arabia – Whether the court had subject matter and territorial jurisdiction to make protective orders

The father of the 21-year-old woman was ordered to permit and facilitate her return to the UK.

The 21-year-old young woman was born in Wales and lived there until she was 17. She had dual Saudi and British citizenship. In 2012 she went to Saudi Arabia at the insistence of her father and had remained there ever since. She claimed he was mistreating her, keeping her under constraint at his flat and refusing to permit her to return to the UK.

Applications were made for a forced marriage protection order and mandatory orders under the inherent jurisdiction to protect the woman. During the course of the hearing the first application was withdrawn.

Directions made prior to the hearing that the woman should be given the chance to speak in private with her solicitor had not been complied with and, therefore, it was not appropriate for her to give oral evidence. The judge was, therefore, impelled to decide the outcome on the basis of untested evidence.

It was clear that, assuming the facts were true, the court had the power under the inherent jurisdiction to make protective orders exercising the parens patriae jurisdiction indistinguishable from that in relation to children. Furthermore, the court had jurisdiction to protect vulnerable adults who were habitually resident abroad, but were British citizens; and, on the facts alleged by the woman, which included constraint and ill-treatment, that jurisdiction was engaged in this case.

The core facts of the case pointed to the woman being under severe constraint by her father. Her current circumstances were such that, as a British citizen, she required the protection of the courts of England and Wales.

The father was ordered to permit and facilitate the woman's return to the UK if she so wished and to pay her air fare. He was directed to make her Saudi and British passports available to her.

No. FD15F05038
Neutral Citation Number: [2016] EWHC 2151 (Fam)


Royal Courts of Justice

Wednesday, 3rd August 2016


(Sitting throughout in public)

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B E T W E E N :


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(Vulnerable adult; British citizen)

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Transcribed by BEVERLEY F. NUNNERY & CO.(a trading name of Opus 2 International Limited)Official Court Reporters and Audio Transcribers25 Southampton Buildings, London WC2A 1ALTel: 020 7831 5627 Fax: 020 7831 7737info@beverleynunnery.com

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MR. H. SETRIGHT, QC and MR. M. GRATION (instructed by Dawson Cornwell Solicitors) appeared on behalf of the Applicant
MR. M. SCOTT-MANDERSON, QC (instructed by Osbornes Solicitors) appeared on behalf of the Respondent

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Al-Jeffery v Al-Jeffery (Vulnerable Adult British Citizen) [2016] EWHC 2151 (Fam)

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