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Man (19) arrested after 12-year-old girl found to be pregnant

NewsBy Shuki Byrne
The girl will be one of Ireland and Britain's youngest mothers if the decision is made to proceed with the pregnancy
The girl will be one of Ireland and Britain's youngest mothers if the decision is made to proceed with the pregnancy

A young man has been arrested by police in Belfast after a 12-year-old girl was found to be pregnant.

The 19-year-old man was detained on Thursday and has subsequently been released on bail as police carry out further investigations. 

A PSNI spokesperson said he arrested in the Lenadoon area of the city after they were informed the young girl was pregnant. 

"Police arrested a 19 year old man in the West Belfast area on Thursday 1st October in relation to a sexual offence. The man has been released on police bail pending further enquiries."

Reports suggest police are awaiting the results of a medical examination before proceeding accordingly. If the man is found to have had intercourse with the girl he will be charged with rape. 

Sexual intercourse involving a girl under the age of 13 years comes with a maximum penalty of 14 years' imprisonment. Where the activity involves statutory rape the sentence is a mandatory life one. 

It is understood the child's family have been left shocked by the incident. 

She will be one of the youngest girls to ever give birth if the decision is taken to proceed with the pregnancy. 

During the summer a Belfast woman became Ireland and Britain's youngest grandmother at 29 after her 15-year-old daughter gave birth.