Mother facing NI abortion pills prosecution living in ‘fear and pain’

A legal challenge involving a woman accused of obtaining abortion pills for her teenage daughter in Northern Ireland has been adjourned.

Before the case began, the woman said she was in “fear and pain” over the looming prosecution.

The judicial review hearing was adjourned to allow prosecutors to make a formal submission to the High Court in Belfast on the human rights implications of the case in the wake of a recent Supreme Court ruling.

Northern Ireland’s Lord Chief Justice Declan Morgan said: “Dealing with the case in the absence of understanding the Public Prosecution Service (PPS) response to the Supreme Court would be entirely inappropriate.

“We are going to take the case out today.”

Anti abortion demonstrators, including Bernadette Smyth (centre) outside the High Court in Belfast where the court is to hear a judicial review taken by a mother who was prosecuted for securing abortion pills for her daughter. Brian Lawless/PA.

Anti-abortion activists including Bernie Smyth from campaign group Precious Life also gathered outside court ahead of the hearing.

She said: “The importance of this case is to send a very clear message out to the people in Northern Ireland, to women in Northern Ireland who would feel maybe their only option is to purchase very dangerous illegal abortion pills and we are saying there is another way.

“It is vitally important that we uphold the law here in Northern Ireland.”

- Press Association

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