F4J suspend action after kidnap story

MATT O'Connor, the Suffolk-based founder of Fathers 4 Justice, today suspended the group's operations amid allegations extremist sympathers plotted to kidnap the prime minister's youngest son.

MATT O'Connor, the Suffolk-based founder of Fathers 4 Justice, today suspended the group's operations amid allegations extremist sympathers plotted to kidnap the prime minister's youngest son.

Mr O'Connor, condemned any such action and said the group was increasingly having its name “hijacked” by militant extremists.

The father-of-three, from Cavendish, said he was suspending operations of the group while enquires into today's allegations were made.

The story of the alleged plot appeared on the front page of the Sun newspaper today and claimed officers from Special Branch had apparently stumbled across the plan to kidnap five-year-old Leo Blair while investigating individuals on the fringe of group.


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Mr O'Connor, 38, said: “After peacefully campaigning for three years to ensure children get to see their fathers, we condemn any individual who planned this appalling outrage.

“I have three young boys myself and couldn't think of anything more traumatic for Mr Blair, his family and his son than what is reported in this morning's Sun newspaper, however we should approach the story with caution as it carries very little information in it.

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“If the police have enough information they should not only release the names of those involved but prosecute them.

“This kind of coverage unravels all the good work we have done over the last three years, though I despair that the desperation of fathers only reflects the intransigence of the government to address the crisis in family law.

“If our position is constantly undermined by extremists, we will shut down the Fathers for Justice campaign.”

The Sun reported that there were no details of the alleged scheme to snatch Leo, but it was understood the men only wanted to hold him for a short period in order to highlight the plight of estranged fathers before releasing him unharmed.

Mr O'Connor confirmed some ex members, who had wanted to take the group on a more militant route, were forced to quit Fathers for Justice last year.

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