Great aunt to give evidence at Climbie inquiry

Victoria Climbie’s great aunt will be required to give evidence
in person to the public inquiry looking into the girl’s death.

Counsel to the inquiry Neil Garnham QC, said he would be writing
to Marie-Therese Kouao’s representatives for confirmation that
Kouao would answer questions put to her or for detailed reasons if
she would not.

Following legal advice, Kouao has previously refused to submit a
written response to the inquiry for fear of influencing her appeal

Kouao and her boyfriend Carl Manning were both sentenced to life
for murder and cruelty to a child in January 2001.

Garnham said the inquiry would then decide whether or not to
issue a summons.

If a summons was issued, any further refusal on Kouao’s part to
answer questions could then be referred on to the attorney

Garnham also suggested the inquiry be adjourned to a local crown
court for Kouao’s evidence in order to address security issues. It
was proposed that Manning would be asked to give oral evidence via
a video link.



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