Mother slammed for manufacturing paedophile claims against ex husband
Published 08/09/2011 | 11:23
A model and racehorse trainer who "manufactured" claims that her ex-husband had abused their daughter caused "profound difficulties" for the little girl at school, according to a High Court judge.
Victoria Haigh's behaviour also "jeopardised" the livelihood of ex-husband David Tune, said judge Sir Nicholas Wall, President of the Family Division of the High Court in London, in a written information document published in a legal website.
Last month, Sir Nicholas criticised Ms Haigh at a High Court hearing in London - saying she had made up abuse allegations about Mr Tune then "caused" the little girl, now seven, to repeat them to police.
The judge has now revealed more information about the case in the information document, which has been published on the British and Irish Legal Information Institute website.
In an introduction to the information document, the judge said: "I have set out the core information regarding this case which, in my judgment, should now be placed into the public domain."
Sir Nicholas said Ms Haigh e-mailed parents at her daughter's school and directed them to an internet page in which Mr Tune was labelled "paedophile father".
The judge said she also contacted Mr Tune's employers and directed them to documents which said her ex-husband was a "paedophile and a rapist".
The little girl now lives with her father and is subject to a care plan organised by a local authority in Doncaster, South Yorkshire, the court has heard.
Sir Nicholas has ruled that Ms Haigh, Mr Tune and Doncaster Metropolitan Borough Council, the local authority working with the little girl, can be identified.
But he says the little girl - referred to as "X" in court documents - must not be named.
Judges had been hearing evidence about the custody battle over the youngster at private hearings.
But, at the High Court hearing in August, Sir Nicholas said he had decided to disclose information so the public could be told that Mr Tune was "not a paedophile".
At that hearing, Sir Nicholas made an order saying Ms Haigh could not make any application in relation to her daughter without his permission for two years.
And the judge told the court: "Allegations of sexual abuse were first made by the mother and not by X. These were false and the mother knew them to be false."
He added: "X was coached by the mother to make allegations of sexual abuse against the father."
In the newly-published "information document", the judge gives more detail of Ms Haigh's behaviour.
"Perhaps most disturbingly Ms Haigh has caused profound difficulties for X at her school," says Sir Nicholas, in the "information document".
"The school has informed the court that some, if not most, of the parents whose children attend X's primary school have an understanding of the allegations made by Ms Haigh that are placed on the web.
"Ms Haigh emailed several of the parents whose children attend at that school via the school contact list, (which she had obtained) inviting them to visit her webpage.
"This is a website primarily devoted to this case. It directs the reader by hyperlink to X's police interviews with the heading: Vicky Haigh: requesting her daughter to return from her paedophile father and Doncaster 'Social' Services.
He adds: "It seems some of the parents may have followed the invitation and have gained access to material which includes extracts of X's interviews to the police."
The judge goes on: "The extracts from X's police interviews contain the false allegations. In addition to the direct harm that causes to X and her father, it is perhaps important to remember that the material will be read by many different people with differing motivations.
"There are those who will read it for their own sexual gratification, victimising X in the process. The mother seems to be entirely unable to understand or empathise with the consequences to X of these actions."
The judge said Ms Haigh had sent a "letter" to her daughter in an email to the school.
"In that email she observes, 'I am famous again darling, but this time it is not because I am a model or racehorse trainer. It is because I have fought my way to the top people in the country, to give me my daughter back and I will not stop until they do ... when I see you I will keep all of the newspapers that I have been in and if you want to look at them you can'," adds Sir Nicholas.
"That email may illuminate something of the mother's true motivation."
He goes on: "Ms Haigh has also contacted the father's employers through the company's website and through the personal Facebook accounts of members of staff.
"Those communications have involved countless documents stating that Mr Tune is a paedophile and a rapist.
"They also assert an alleged conspiracy through the court process, the police, all professionals and the judiciary.
"Though his employers have been supportive to Mr Tune, they are anxious about the damage done to the reputation of their business and accordingly Mr Tune's livelihood and thereby his capacity to provide for X, is jeopardised."
The judge says Ms Haigh and Mr Tune married in May 2003 - and Ms Haigh gave birth later that year.
"X appeared to have every advantage in life," said Sir Nicholas. "They had a comfortable home and X was greatly loved by both of them.
"Sadly, by 2004 the parents began to experience difficulties in their marriage. In January 2005 Mr Tune vacated the former matrimonial home."