On Tuesday, 1st December, Sabine McNeill will be in court along with Belinda McKenzie to face charges of incurring excessive legal costs by bungling the Melissa Laird case in their role as ‘McKenzie Friends’. If all goes well, they’ll be required to pay a £2,000 fine; it remains to be seen whether they’ll be stripped of their role as McKenzie Friends, and barred from this position henceforth. But we can hope.
As we discussed this amongst ourselves, a member of our team wondered aloud about whether Sabine had fouled the Laird case in the same way she essentially created Hoaxtead: by taking confidential case documents and illegally spreading them across the internet.
As it turns out, Sabine and Belinda became involved in that case after the mother had already been deported, so the damage they inflicted seems to have had more to do with incompetence than willful sabotage.
However, it doesn’t take much searching to discover that Sabine seems to have a chronic leakage problem.
For example, when she got involved in the Vicky Haigh case, acting as McKenzie Friend to Haigh’s ‘investigator’, Elizabeth Watson, it didn’t take Sabine long to start helping Liz breach a court order, and thus become guilty of contempt of court.
9. Another aspect which makes Ms. Watson’s contempt particularly grave is that she breached the order not only by communicating through e-mails with a large number of third parties, but also gave material to an internet provider, one Sabine McNeill who runs a website called Inquiring Minds. Ms. McNeill (who at one point acted as Ms. Watson’s McKenzie Friend in these proceedings) lives, I am told, in Germany although she has a flat in London. The mischief of the publication, as Ms. Watson now appreciates, is that the publication of allegations which I and two other judges held to be without foundation not only puts the identity of the child into the public domain and renders it accessible to anybody who cares to look for it or to read it; but equally, Ms Watson has put herself in the hands and the power of the internet provider. The omens do not altogether look good.
10. Yesterday Ms. McNeill wrote to Ms. Watson’s solicitors in these terms:
Why on earth does the Guardian who has NOT acted in the child’s interest request me to remove the page about [the earlier fraud?]
Re Inquiring Minds I wrote to Malcolm & Co. and cc him for your convenience.” – [That is another matter on the website] – I am happy to cooperate but I am not happy destroying all the evidence that Liz [Ms Watson] has found and was just not sufficiently able to present effectively. The same evidence will help to get Vicky [that is the mother] her daughter back after all and the Guardian CERTAINLY has no right/authority/jurisdiction to tell me anything.
Sorry, but you will have to fight for the fact that Liz has undug more than ‘they’ would have liked her to.
With best wishes, Sabine.”
Yes, that sounds like Sabine: self-justifying, self-pitying, and paranoid.
Another case where she seems to have over-shared was the infamous Musas, the Nigerian couple who had all 7 of their children taken into care when it was found they’d been subjecting them to brutal abuse and neglect.
Here’s a screen shot of a blog Sabine ran about that case:
On 18 June 2012 I was tricked into accepting an ‘injunction’ which was supposedly ‘sealed’ by the secret Family Court ‘to remove all material and information relating to the children…since 24th April 2012’.
Is it just us, or does that sound as though Sabine was up to her old tricks…and then getting huffy when told to remove the material from the internet?
It does begin to look like a pattern for Sabine the Leak Queen…no matter how much she tries to deny it. Let’s hope the courts see it the same way.