THE MOTHER and uncle of a 16-year-old girl kidnapped by the pair after she ran away from home have been given suspended sentences.
The pair, who cannot be named, kidnapped the teenager after she ran away from home following the discovery of her secret affair with a Muslim boy, the Derby Telegraph reported.
The youngster feared she would be forced into an arranged marriage after the discovery and ran away from home, Leicester Crown Court heard.
But she was tracked down at a Leicester cinema and bundled into a car by her mother and uncle and driven to the family home in Derby.
When the refuge where she was staying alerted police to her disappearance they called on the family home where the girl told officers of her ordeal.
Prosecutor Richard Thatcher said: “He was a Muslim and she was a Sikh. Because of this, both parties felt if either of their families became aware of the existence of the relationship it would be ended.
“She was in fear. One of the things she was concerned about was that her parents would split them up but also that they would make her go to India to undergo an arranged marriage – something she was not keen to do.
“She found their attitudes difficult and the attitude that there should be a lesser view taken of her boyfriend was something she could not understand and considered to be an old prejudice.”
But Dan Gaskell, defending, dismissed the prospect the girl was to be forced into an arranged marriage.
His view was also shared by Judge Christopher Plunkett. He told the accused: “The two of you bundled your daughter into the back of your car, you drove her away against her will and you kept her against her will for a number of hours.
“If I was of the opinion that you had carried out this offence to get her to enter into an arranged marriage, I would not hesitate to send you to prison. This operation was, however ill-judged and, however misconceived, at its root well-intentioned.
“The result has been tragic – your daughter is estranged, you have lost her trust. Whatever you say your intention was, she is left in fear. This sort of behaviour is entirely unacceptable.”
As well as 12-month suspended prison sentences, the accused were ordered to do a total of 205 hours of unpaid work between them.
The girl’s mother was also put on a 12-month supervision order.