Latvian parents gave their little boy an English name then abandoned him in maternity ward
A baby boy was dumped at a hospital by his Latvian parents because they didn't want him to be brought up in their homeland, a High Court hearing was told.
The child, who is now eight months old, was given a “classic” English first name to give him “the best chance of integrating”, before being left in a special care baby unit for several weeks after being born prematurely at home.
His parents never came to visit and have made it clear that they do not want any contact with him.
The couple said they wanted the boy to be adopted in the UK and were opposed to him being taken to Latvia and being brought up by a grandparent.
The court, sitting in Leeds, heard that the couple already had two children, who lived with a grandmother and another child would be “too heavy a burden”.
The baby is currently living with foster parents.
His parents had lived in the UK for seven years but had now separated.
Mr Justice Cobb said Latvian authorities were against the boy being adopted in the UK.
Latvian officials are worried the boy’s right to respect for family and private life could be violated if he is adopted by a British couple.
The boy’s maternal grandmother has expressed interest in raising him in Latvia, and the judge has asked the Latvian authorities to assess whether the grandmother would be a suitable carer for the boy.
During the preliminary ruling, Mr Justice Cobb said: “[He] is eight months old; he was born prematurely, at home.
“[His] parents took him straight to hospital where they left him; they did not return to visit him, and have not seen him since.
“[His] mother and father are Latvian citizens but have lived in England since 2009; they have never married. They separated while the mother was pregnant with [him].
“[He] has two full siblings who live with the mother, and who have contact with their father.
“The mother and father believe that raising another child within the family would impose upon them too heavy a burden, financially and otherwise. They have indicated that they do not wish to have any form of contact with [the little boy].
“[The little boy] has Latvian nationality. He may well have British nationality too.
“[His] forename is a classic English name chosen specifically because his parents want him to have the best chance of integrating here.”
The identity of the hospital and the local authority involved, along with the identity of the parents have been subjected to a strict reporting restriction by Mr Justice Cobb, preventing them from being named.