Businessman 'living' with 13-year-old
- ordered to return her to her mother
May 21, 2004
Justice B.S. Roy yesterday ordered a prominent city businessman to release a teenage girl into the joint custody of her mother and maternal aunt after the aunt filed habeas corpus proceedings in the High Court.
The businessman, who appeared in court yesterday with the teen, was also ordered by the judge to refrain from making contact with the teenager, who is aged 13 according to a birth certificate shown to this newspaper. The matter has been adjourned to June 4, 2004.
According to an affidavit in support of her application, Bibi Shameeza Hamid, the teenager's mother, claimed that the man offered her daughter the opportunity of participating in a 'work study' programme at his business establishment last month.
However, the affidavit said, when the teenager left home on the first day of the alleged 'work-study' exercise, she failed to return home and attempts to contact the shop- owner proved futile. On the following day, the mother managed to contact the businessman who informed her that her daughter was in his charge and proceeded to ignore her request that her daughter be returned home immediately.
At this stage, according to the affidavit, Hamid attempted to lodge a report against the businessman at a nearby police station but the officer on duty reportedly refused to take the information.
Hamid then reported the matter to the Brickdam police station where she was interviewed by Superintendent Walters who sent for the businessman and the teenager and instructed that the teenager be taken to the Georgetown Public Hospital and examined, the affidavit said.
It related that while at the Brickdam police station, the teenager disclosed that she and the man were involved in sexual relations and that following a medical examination, it was revealed that the teenager is sexually active. Additionally, the affidavit said, the businessman turned up while Hamid and her daughter were at the hospital and collected the teenager without Hamid's consent.
Another report to the Brickdam police station did not assist Hamid to secure the return of her daughter into her custody, and Hamid asserts that this 'abduction' resulted in her suffering severe emotional stress.
Thereafter, Hamid sought the assistance of Chief Family Probation and Officer, Ann Green, and a decision was taken to send the teenager to an institute at Cove and John on the East Coast Demerara. But Hamid did not consent to this decision, the affidavit said.
However, while at the institution, the businessman reportedly took the teenager into his charge again and carried her to the Prasad's hospital where Hamid saw them together in a room. At that point, the man shouted at Hamid ordering her to leave the hospital, according to the affidavit.
It continued: "That I [Hamid] am advised by my attorney and verily believe that **** **** [and] ...Minister of Human Services and Social Security Ms Bibi Shadick [have] no authority at law or otherwise to detain my child against my will or without my consent, [and] to have my daughter sent to Girls' school or any other institution without my consent or without an order of a competent court, [respectively]."
Further: "That I [Hamid] am advised by my attorney-at-law and verily believe that I am solely responsible for the upkeep and welfare of my child."
Police accompanied the teenager and her mother to the home of her aunt where she is expected to remain until the next court date.