A council has defied a High Court ruling by refusing a caring family the right to adopt a girl because the father once smacked another child for swearing.
The original decision to ban the couple from adopting the half-sister of a boy they have raised for five years was described as bizarre and overturned by a judge last week.
But last night the couple, named only as Mr and Mrs A, were devastated after Newham Council, in East London, again denied them the chance to reunite the baby, known as K, with her sibling.
Social workers cited the adoptive father’s ‘attitude to corporal punishment’ even though Mr Justice Bennett overturned the ruling, calling it an unreasonable decision made ‘in dangerous territory’.
Mr A, 48, and his wife, 49, have promised to continue their campaign to raise K with her seven-year-old sibling and their other foster children. The couple will return to court to gain custody of the girl.
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There are growing concerns that Newham Council acted out of spite because of the publicity the case has attracted.
The couple’s solicitor, Katy Rensten, said: ‘We were made aware of the so-called fresh decision by a letter and we will go back to court again.’