The proceedings related to children born in March 2005 and July 2007 to married parents. In October 2007 the family moved to Scotland. The purpose of the move was the subject of dispute as between the parents. The family rented a flat in St Andrews, and availed of health care and social services there.
On 28 April 2008 the mother took the children back to Finland. The father petitioned for their return. On 1 October 2008 the Helsinki Court of Appeal, sitting as the designated court of first instance for Hague Convention proceedings, held that the children were habitually resident in Scotland at the time of the removal and it ordered their return to Scotland forthwith.
The mother challenged this order. On 3 October 2008, the Supreme Court, sitting as a court of appeal for Hague Convention proceedings, suspended its enforcement.