The children, two boys and a girl, were ages 11, 5 and 8 1/3 respectively at the date of the alleged wrongful removal and lived in Australia. The parents separated in May 1993 and the children lived with their mother. In July 1993 the father agreed to the mother taking the children to England to visit her parents.
Prior to the trip, the mother had taken the daughter to the hospital on suspicions that she had been sexually interfered with. The specialist confirmed this possibility. In November 1993 the mother took the children to England with the father’s consent for an extended vacation.
In England the mother prevented telephone contact between the father and children and the mother and children were housed by the local authority. The daughter was interviewed by social services and attributed to her father the responsibility for sexual interference.
On 27 January 1994 the mother’s solicitors wrote a letter to the father informing him that the case had been referred to the local social services department. On 23 March 1994 the father issued a summons for the children’s return under the Convention. On 15 April 1994 the father issued an application in the Family Court of Western Australia for custody of the children.