Upcoming BAFS Events

Joint RSM-BAFS Conference: Female Genital Mutilation (FGM): A multidisciplinary approach to the presentation, investigation and prosecution
Date: 22nd January 2022
Time: 09:15-16:40
Venue: Online


This webinar aims to examine the essential aspects of an acute presentation of female genital mutilation (FGM) in a child and the criminal investigation, whilst ensuring the welfare of the child remains paramount. 

In this session, key speakers will cover the clinical aspects of the child's presentation, assessment and clinical care, safeguarding the child, along with aspects of the police investigation and evidence gathering. It will also cover the case building, charging decision and prosecution. 

During this session, you will:

  • Understand the acute presentation and care of a child following FGM 
  • Appreciate the multi-disciplinary approach to and complexity of investigation, case-building and prosecution 
  • Hear about the importance of the de-brief and learning from such a case 
  • Describe the importance of safeguarding the child

This annual event is a joint meeting run in conjunction with the Royal Society of Medicine (RSM)


Welcome and introduction

Dr Bernadette Butler, President, Clinical Forensic and Legal Medicine Section, Royal Society of Medicine and Tracy Alexander, President, British Academy of Forensic Sciences

Session one: Initial presentation and investigation and clinical assessment

Presentation and early investigation: Securing the forensic scene, evidence gathering

Detective Constable Lauren Brady and Detective Constable Laura Welham, Metropolitan Police Service

Clinical presentation of female genital mutilation, assessment and clinical evidence

Dr Deborah Hodes, Consultant Paediatrician, University College Hospital, University College London Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust and The Lighthouse

Comfort break

Session two: Investigative, learning and collaborative aspects

Police response to FGM: Intelligence, prevention and collaboration

Inspector Allen Davis, Operational Lead, Harmful Practices, National Lead, Metropolitan Police Service, National Police Lead, Operation Limelight and Deputy Chair, National Working Group, Abuse linked to Witchcraft and Spirit Possession

Comfort break
The role of the National Injuries Database (NID) Team (National Crime Agency (NCA)) and medical experts

Sonya Baylis, National Injuries Database Manager, Major Crime Investigative Support, National Crime Agency

The voice of the child

Mr Leethen Bartholomew, Head, National FGM Centre, Barnados     

Panel discussion

Session three: A legal and anthropological view

Welcome and introduction to the afternoon

Tracy Alexander

Case building, charging decisions and evidence presentation including witness testimony

Ms Lynette Woodrow, Deputy Chief Crown Prosecutor, Crown Prosecution Service Headquarters

A strategic legal perspective

Dexter Dias, Queen's Counsel, Garden Court Chambers       

Comfort break

A social and anthropological perspective - what cultural factors drive FGM

Dr Brian D. Earp, Senior Research Fellow, Uehiro Centre for Practical Ethics, University of Oxford

Panel discussion
Concluding remarks
Close of meeting

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