Search

Ilford doctor pleads not guilty in UK’s first female genital mutilation case

PUBLISHED: 13:34 15 April 2014 | UPDATED: 17:22 15 April 2014

The Whittington Hospital in North London (Picture: Steve Parsons)

The Whittington Hospital in North London (Picture: Steve Parsons)

PA Archive/Press Association Images

An Ilford doctor has denied performing female genital mutilation (FGM) while working at a hospital.

Dr Dhanoun Dharmasena, 31, of Rushden Gardens, and his co-defendant Hasan Mohamed, 40, of Holloway, are the first men to be prosecuted under laws prohibiting the practice.

They both denied all charges at Westminster Magistrates’ Court on Tuesday.

Dharmasena is accused of repairing FGM that had previously been performed on a woman who gave birth at Whittington Hospital in November 2012.

He has been charged with an offence contrary to the 2003 Female Genital Mutilation Act and Mohamed faces charges of intentionally encouraging an offence of FGM and aiding and abetting Dharmasena to commit an offence.

They will next appear at Southwark Crown Court on May 2.

Also known as “cutting” or female circumcision, FGM is a cultural practice originating in some parts of Africa and the Middle East where parts of young girls’ genitals are removed or sewn up.

It has been a criminal offence in England since 1985, when the Prohibition of Female Circumcision Act 1985 was passed.

It was replaced in 2003 with the Female Genital Mutilation Act, which also made it an offence for UK residents to carry out FGM abroad or procure it, even in countries where the practice is legal.

The maximum penalty is 14 years’ imprisonment.

Read more:

Ilford doctor in first female genital mutilation prosecutions


If you value what this story gives you, please consider supporting the Ilford Recorder. Click the link in the orange box above for details.

Become a supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Latest from the Ilford Recorder