Sunday, February 22, 2015

Killer dad gets legal aid money to fight for child custody (United Kingdom)

Daddy X--the latest fathers rights poster child.

Killer who murdered his wife is granted legal aid worth thousands of pounds for custody battle over her four children
Man, identified only as X, murdered his wife and mother of four children
Killing was 'particularly horrible' and X was given a life sentence for murder
He has refused to take a paternity test to prove he is father of the children
Council and children's guardian applied to use his DNA for paternity test B
ut Court of Appeal has overturned decision and said it cannot be used Judges said using crime scene DNA would damage integrity of database

By Claire Carter for MailOnline
Published: 04:11 EST, 22 February 2015 | Updated: 10:55 EST, 22 February 2015

A killer who murdered his wife has been granted legal aid to fight for custody of her four children.

The man, known only as X, is serving a life sentence for the 'particularly horrible' murder of the children's mother and has refused to have a paternity test to prove he is their father.

Judges at the Court of Appeal upheld a decision that DNA collected from the murder scene could not be used to prove paternity, so the issue of his and his family's access to the children - aged between three and nine - will be decided without this evidence.

The case began when the local authority and children's legal guardian challenged the decision by Theresa May, the home secretary, and the police not to allow the DNA to be used to prove paternity, the Sunday Times reported.

The man is not named on any of the children's birth certificates. Sir James Munby, president of the family division of the High Court, initially allowed the application and ruled that the DNA could be used to determine paternity.

He said: 'One cannot ignore the enormous implications for these children of what happened to their mother. 'Their futures will be indelibly marked by it. They need to know if the man who murdered their mother, the man who they believe to be their father, is in truth their father.'

But after the ruling was challenged the Court of Appeal overturned Sir James Munby's decision.

The judges said allowing evidence gathered from the crime scene to be used would damage the integrity of the DNA database.

David Green, director of Civitas, a think tank, branded the case 'extraordinary.'

He added: 'For the sake of the long-term care of the children and the feelings of the wife's family he should not be allowed any continuing role in their upbringing.'