201 Elizabeth Street
Sydney NSW 2000
99 William Street
Melbourne VIC 3000
231 North Quay
Brisbane QLD 4000
1 Farrell Place
Canberra ACT 2601
In what I consider to be one of the clearest examples of a parent’s lack of insight I have come across in a long time, a convicted paedophile has lost his appeal against Orders excluding him from having parental responsibility for his children and prohibiting all communication between him and the children.
At the time the Orders were made, the parties’ children were aged 15 years old (a daughter) and 11 years old (twin boys). The daughter had not seen her father for seven years and the twins had not seen their father for five years. The father was serving an 18 year prison sentence, with a non-parole period of 13 years, for a number of sexual offences. He was not to be released prior to May 2025. The offences were described as ‘the most vile and serious kind’ and included him filming himself engaging in abhorrent activity and taking sexual photographs of his daughter and his step-children (not the children of these proceedings).
Cronin J had earlier made interim orders permitting communication through the exchange of letters, gifts and the like at a time when the father ‘professed his innocence’. Some nine weeks later, the father pleaded guilty to all charges laid against him. On 7 February 2013, Cronin J discharged his earlier orders and made orders the effect of which was to restrain the father from contacting the children
In a classic example of a party wanting to keep any relationship ongoing, even if it is a litigious relationship, in June 2014, the father commenced new proceedings. Final Orders were made on 21 July 2015 excluding the father from having parental responsibility and prohibiting all communication between him and the children. The father appealed those orders asserting that the trial judge erred in failing to obtain the children’s views and also asserting it was not open to His Honour on the evidence to find that the father posed an unacceptable risk of psychological harm to the children. The Full Court found that the appeal was ‘entirely without merit’.
Examples throughout the judgment of the father’s lack of insight included the following:
The Full Court summed up the father as follows:- “The father’s submissions themselves underscore the very point made by the family consultant and His Honour: his narcissism and lack of insight result in his considering the issue through the prism of his own needs and blind him to the needs of the children and the potential impact upon them.”
Now THAT is justice!!!
Should you need to consult a family lawyer regarding parenting matters, do not hesitate to contact one of our experienced family law team.
Image Credit – Sakhorn Saengtongsamarnsin © 123RF.com
Contact Armstrong Legal:
Sydney: (02) 9261 4555
Melbourne: (03) 9620 2777
Brisbane: (07) 3229 4448
Canberra: (02) 6288 1100