A teenage girl, who police believed was at risk of a forced marriage, has been granted protection by law following an application made by Sheffield’s Protecting Vulnerable People team.
Officers were granted an interim Forced Marriage Protection Order at Sheffield Family Court, following concerns for the teenage girl on Tuesday.
The order also stated that the victim, who had left the UK days before, must be returned to the UK within 36 hours of the order being granted.
Det Insp Suzanne Jackson, force lead for forced marriage, honour based abuse and female genital mutilation (FGM), and Temporary Detective Sergeant Tom Bishop personally met the victim at the airport to ensure her safety when she returned to the country.
Det Insp Jackson said: “Concerns were raised to us after the victim had left the UK. After enquiries were carried out both in the UK and abroad, we had enough evidence to apply for the order, which was subsequently granted.
“Since then, we have continued to work closely with the Forced Marriage Unit and airport police on a daily basis to ensure the safe return of this young girl.
“During this investigation, Temporary Det Sgt Bishop and the team have acted quickly and professionally to safeguard this young girl, with the support of South Yorkshire Police Legal Services, to secure these interim orders.
“I’d encourage anyone with concerns about issues in relation to forced marriage, honour based abuse or FGM, to reach out and speak to us.
“While we currently have a number of individuals subject to Forced Marriage Protection Orders within South Yorkshire. I hope this illustrates to victims and affected communities how seriously we treat this crime and the lengths we will go to in order to safeguard those at risk.
“Every high risk honour based abuse referral to South Yorkshire Police is treated with the utmost urgency to ensure victims are protected and that they feel safe and supported from then on.”
The court will consider in due course whether a final order is to be made.
If you have concerns about forced marriage, call South Yorkshire Police on 101. If a life is at risk, call 999.
You can also contact Karma Nirvana, a national charity that specialises in help and support for victims of honour based abuse and forced marriage, on 0800 5999 247 or Ashiana can also be contacted on 0114 255 5740.
The Forced Marriage Unit can also be contacted by calling 020 7008 0151, emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or on their social media pages (@FMUnit on Twitter).