A father cleared of allowing his six-year-old daughter to undergo female genital mutilation has said the failed prosecution put intolerable pressure on him and his family.
The man described the evidence against him as unsatisfactory and claimed the police and Crown Prosecution Service had important lessons to learn.
A judge at Bristol crown court halted the trial of the 29-year-old when he ruled that he had no case to answer.
On Friday the father’s legal team, Elite Solicitors in Bristol, released a statement on his behalf expressing relief and anger.
It said: “Female genital mutilation (FGM) is rightly illegal in the UK. Our client consistently denied the allegation that he exposed his daughter to any form of FGM.
“He welcomes the not guilty verdict following the legal ruling there was no case for him to answer. The evidence was wholly unsatisfactory.
“Our client hopes that those involved in bringing this prosecution will learn important lessons from this case. The investigation by the police began in 2016. It has placed an intolerable pressure upon him and his family. He wishes to thank his wife and the wider community for their support throughout. He is very pleased the proceedings are finally over.”