Girl at risk of sexual exploitation kept under constant supervision, judge told

A 13-year-old girl who displays “significant challenging behaviours” and is said to be at risk of sexual exploitation is being kept under constant supervision at a specialist unit, a High Court judge has been told.

The teenager is in the care of social services bosses at Salford City Council (pictured), which is based in Greater Manchester, but has been placed in a unit in Scotland, Mr Justice MacDonald has heard.

Lawyers representing the council have told him she is the subject of “constant 2:1 staff supervision”.

They have explained how “certain behaviour” is “physically restrained” and internet use supervised.

The judge has heard how she is allowed to be “by herself” in a local town for 30 minutes each week with unit staff “in the vicinity”.

Mr Justice MacDonald has outlined detail of the girl’s case, in a ruling published online, after being asked to analyse a number of legal issues at a recent private hearing in the Family Division of the High Court in Lancaster.

He said the girl could not be identified in media reports of the case and has not said where in Scotland she is living.

She had gone into council care as a result of a number of concerns, the judge heard.

He said she went missing from home and displayed “significant challenging behaviours”, including: aggression towards her mother, damaging property, and “sexualised behaviour”.

She was “considered” to be a victim of sexual exploitation and thought to be vulnerable to sexual exploitation.

The girl had been moved to the Scottish unit late in 2018 because no suitable accommodation could be found in England.

Another judge had approved that placement at an earlier High Court hearing.

Mr Justice MacDonald made orders allowing unit staff to continue to deprive the girl of her human right to liberty.

The judge said such moves were in her best interests.

He also said lawyers representing Salford council should bring her case to the attention of judges in Scotland.

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