A COUPLE appeared in court yesterday accused of carrying out an elaborate ruse to fool a biological father out of knowing he had a daughter.
The couple appeared at Perth Sheriff Court and were alleged to have conned the NHS, the local registrar, council officials and the child’s real father for nearly three years.
They are alleged to have made up a series of claims to dupe the father into thinking the child had either been aborted or was never born.
The couple, who cannot be named for legal reasons, are accused of carrying out a fraudulent scheme both before and after the girl was born in February 2011.
The 28-year-old mother, from Perth, and a 33-year-old man, from Glasgow, appeared together in the dock and will face a trial later this year.
They both denied the detailed charge against them.
It is alleged that between 2010 and 2013, they carried out the fraud at Perth High Street, Perth Royal Infirmary, Perth police office and Perth registry office.
Both are alleged to have formed the fraudulent scheme to have the male accused obtain parental rights and responsibilities towards, and be recognised as the father of the child, by NHS Tayside and Perth and Kinross Council.
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It is alleged that the mother pretended to the real father that she had terminated the pregnancy and pretended to another named woman that she was not pregnant.
She is alleged to have pretended to the hospital and local authority that her co-accused was the father of the child.
They are then alleged to have set up a fake Facebook profile for a fictional woman, who then claimed she was acting as a surrogate mother for the male accused.
The fake Facebook persona then pretended she had handed the female child to the 33-year-old man and he had full custody of the child.
He is alleged to have pretended to Perth’s registrar that he was the girl’s father.
The mother is alleged to have pretended to the true father and another man that she had not given birth.
She is alleged to have told the council she terminated the original pregnancy with the child’s father and that her co-accused was the father of the child she now had.
The couple are alleged to have induced the true father to believe he was not the father of the child. They are also accused of inducing the registrar to put the Glasgow man’s name on the birth certificate.
It is alleged they persuaded the father to believe the child was not his and induced council and health officials to offer advice and assistance on the basis that the child was of the couple facing the charge.
The case was continued yesterday by Sheriff Fiona Tait.
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