Dublin couple jailed over female genital mutilation of 21-month-old daughter
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Dublin couple jailed over female genital mutilation of 21-month-old daughter

A DUBLIN couple have been jailed over the genital mutilation of their daughter in a case which is the first of its kind in Ireland.

The couple, who cannot be named to protect the identity of their daughter, are described as a 37-year-old man and a 27-year-old woman of African origin.

The man has been sentenced to five years and six months and his wife to four years and nine months. Both were also found guilty of one count of child cruelty.

Their daughter, who is now five years old, was just 21 months old when the mutilation was carried out.

Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) has been illegal in the Republic since 2012, and though the procedure was not carried out in Ireland, a doctor who later treated the child for bleeding recognised the signs of FGM and contacted Gardaí.

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The parents had originally claimed that the child suffered the injuries from falling on a toy, but a number of medical experts concluded that this was simply not possible.

The maximum sentence for Female Genital Mutilation is 14 years in prison, and the trial found that while the husband and wife did not carry out the mutilation themselves, they "aided and abetted, counselled or procured" it.

The BBC reports that Judge Elma Sheahan, while sentencing the couple, said that they had shown no remorse.