Judge backs MEN

MEN: splash attracted nationals

A court challenge by the Manchester Evening News enabled the paper to identify the mother who left her baby alone in a car for five hours while she went clubbing, writes Dominic Ponsford.

Christiana Ribas, 28, was jailed for three months on Friday after admitting abandoning her 18-month-old daughter in a car despite sub-zero temperatures outside. The MEN splashed with the story on Friday and it was widely followed up by the nationals.

A Section 39 order made at a preliminary hearing to stop the media from naming her baby prevented the identification of Ribas.

Deputy news editor Amanda Killelea said: “We knew the case was coming up for sentencing so we prepared a letter. We said basically we didn’t think the child would be affected by publication because she was so young and we thought the defendant should be identified because of the seriousness of the case.”

Judge Alan Berg agreed, saying: “This is one of the most shameful episodes of child cruelty by neglect I have had the misfortune to deal with.”

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