The child, a boy, was six months old at the date of the alleged wrongful removal. He had lived in the United Kingdom for the majority of his life. The parents were married and had joint rights of custody.
In July 1995, as agreed between the parents, the mother went to England to prepare for the birth. The boy was born in February 1996.
The parents agreed that the mother would take the child to Greece in mid July 1996 and remain there until the end of August. However, on 4 August following an altercation involving some physical violence, the mother returned to England. She also took her remaining personal belongings from the Greek home.
On 15 January 1997 the father’s originating summons was issued.