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witnesses are telling lies.
"A Lucas direction is a criminal direction derived originally from a case on corroboration, R v Lucas  QB 720. It is used to alert a fact-finding tribunal, that is a jury in a criminal trial, to the fact that a lie told by a defendant does not itself necessarily indicate guilt because the defendant may have some other reason for lying; that is, he may lie for innocent reasons. A witness may lie because she lacks credibility, or because she
has an innocent motive for lying. If she lies about the key facts in issue, that is one thing; if she lies about collateral facts, that may be quite another. A judge of fact may not be able to separate out every fine distinction, but may nevertheless conclude that an allegation is proved, despite the fact that the witness has lied about other matters."
"The judge's assessment of the parents characters, past behaviour and present attitudes are entirely dependent upon finding primary fact, interpreting and drawering reasonable inference from the same. I agree with Miss Ball QC, they are unassailable on appeal. The judge was obliged to reach her conclusions on the whole of the evidence and was not bound by the opinions of others, however eminent in their field. The judge states the basis of her departure from their views, namely that of her "good opportunity not only to hear the witnesses' evidence but to observe their demeanour and credibility.
Conscious that such comment is trite in first instance judgments, it is pertinent to note in this one under review that the judge's description of the mother and father when giving evidence before her is analytical and detailed and obviously drawers upon more than their performance in court. It is obviously a counsel of perfection but it seems to me advisable that any judge appraising witnesses in the emotionally charged atmosphere of a contested family dispute should warn themselves to guard against an assessment solely by virtue of their behaviour
in the witness box and to expressly indicate that they have done so." I am very conscious that giving evidence in a case of this nature is very emotional and I bear in mind Lady Justice Macur's caution.
between October and November 2014.
"This profile is likely to represent administration of Codeine containing medication on a regular basis and possibly daily basis during the majority of October and probably a proportion of November."
"Taking into account all the above matters, the local authority contend that whilst the blame for the regular administration of Codeine appears to point must strongly towards DM, the local authority are concerned that a multitude of lies have been told by M which make it hard to exclude her from also having so acted on the instructions of the grandmother or not. STM's role is less significant it seems and the local authority's most
significant concerns lie with regard to his failure to protect probably within the administration period and thereafter. The failure to report matters by all three probably resulted in L receiving more Codeine which in the face of the live allegation is extremely worrying, it was blatant."
"I didn't know which one of them had done it. I didn't trust either of them to tell the truth. I couldn't leave it any longer. I didn't sleep or eat. My mum told me that she was doing something about it. I didn't see anything getting done. My mum told me that nobody needed to know. Nobody else was present. Somebody needed to know about it so I told social services. L was in their care. They were dealing with it. I was concerned dealing with the family that they were not making the point. It was such a serious allegation, I could not rest. I have been criticised by the family members particularly my nana. It has ripped my family apart."
"At this point me, M, SO and ST within the house at (address withheld). J did not get back until about 5pm as SO's husband collected him from college. Before J returned I went into the kitchen. M was already in the kitchen as we had been talking about putting the kettle on to make cups of tea, coffee whilst we preferring food for the party. Once in the kitchen M said to me 'mam asked me to put these in L's bottle' she then took a baby bottle teat with no rim from the drawer in front of her, tipped it up, and four pieces of broken tablet dropped into her hand. She then said 'I have to give this bit' indicating a small piece 'on Friday and the bigger bit on Saturday'. I asked 'what's that' and M replied teething powders. I then explained to M that teething powders come in packets with instructions and were already a powder you do not have to make them into a powder. M replied 'do they?' and I said 'yes'. I further explained that teething powders come in a packet with instructions and you do not put anything in a bottle. It should be rubbed onto the gums. During this discussion I noticed M had a drawer open. In the drawer had been the silicone teat from a bottle with no rim containing the four pieces of broken tablet. I noticed they were not exact quarters. In this drawer was also various cutlery, knives, a rolling in, papers and leaflets. I checked the drawer and there was no other medication in there. I checked in case M had got confused and picked up the wrong medication but there was no other mediation in the drawer at all. Following this, M then put the piece of tablet in her mouth and said 'that's fucking Codeine'. She then started kicking off verbally saying 'I fucking swear to god' I remember thinking at that time that M looked as shocked as I was. I later thought it did not seem to be an act. I told M not to jump to conclusions and she said 'I'm sure she showed me how to do it'. ST must have heard the noise and came into the kitchen also asking what is going on. M replied saying 'these are fucking Codeine. Mum asked me to put them in L's bottle'. ST said 'are you sure they're Codeine' and M said 'yes, I know what fucking Codeine tastes like because I took them all through my pregnancy'. ST said 'everything will taste like Codeine to you then'. We then talked about the matter further and all agreed not to jump to conclusions and wait until our mother returned from Blackpool before asking her about it."
mother to report the matter to the local authority but DM repeatedly said that no one needs to know.
easy now to excuse his failures and inaction and his albeit somewhat reluctant view that M must be responsible.
End of judgment
We hereby certify that this judgment has been approved by Her Honour Judge Moir.