Parents jailed after their baby's vegan diet nearly killed her
A couple who raised their baby on a vegan diet have been jailed after the baby was brought to the brink of death due to malnourishment.
Swedish outlet The Local report that a court in Gothenburg have ruled that two parents have been sentenced to three months in jail for gross negligence causing bodily harm to their 18-month-old daughter, ruling that their "serious negligence had put their daughter in a life-threatening situation".
The parents were also ordered to pay 60,000 kronor (almost £5,000) for their crimes, and the girl's father was also sentenced for several other minor crimes including drugs offences and drink driving charges.
The girl was never registered with Swedish authorities, but was rushed into emergency care in a non-responsive state. The child had been reportedly been fed a diet of breast milk, brown rice and potatoes, and the court said that a child's needs should never come second to the parents' choice of lifestyle.
"According to their ideological belief that the daughter was a citizen of the world, her parents did not even report the birth to any authority, have her checked at a paediatric centre, or even weigh or measure her growth. Nor has the girl been vaccinated or examined by a doctor."
Presiding judge Per Nordén said that while the parents did not intentionally harm their daughter, they had some "remarkable" views about the realities of parenting, referring to a statement from the young child's mother that stated she believed that people could go without food or water for long periods of time with the right mental and physical training.
At the time of her hospital arrival, a doctor said that the girl's condition was "worse than anything we have seen at the hospital before", and her weight was described as at a similar level to a six-month-old baby.
After around three weeks in hospital, the child was put into care, where the foster mother says the 18-month-old is already beginning to show signs of recovery.
Once the parents are out of prison, they will spend around eight weeks with their child under residential care while being monitored by social services.