Parents speak out after legal battle to get their autistic daughter back

The parents of a severely autistic woman fear others with the disability could be at risk of being taken away from their parents because authorities are using discredited communication techniques.

Robin and Julia Burn's daughter Carina was taken away from them and they were arrested after it was alleged they had sexually assaulted their daughter.

Carina Burn has autism and uses facilitated communication with her parents Credit: Family photo

It later emerged that the allegations - claimed to have been made by Carina - could not have been true.

Carina's mother, Julia said: "I was frightened, Robin was frightened. I was panicking for Carina. I was just panicking and panicking for us because we were faced with these terrible allegations."

What started was a legal battle that only finished recently.

The allegations themselves, were said to have been made by Carina, using a communication technique called 'facilitated communication'. It is a method which is discredited.

It relies on the patient pointing at specific words, with someone's hand helping the process.

Kate Whittaker took on Carina's case Credit: ITV Wales

Robin and Julia sought legal help to get their daughter back.

Carmarthenshire County Council admitted in an apology to Julia and Robin that Carina's human rights had been breached.

Police say they are re-examining what happened. In a statement, Dyfed Powys Police said "it had received and was examining Mr and Mrs Burn’s written request to re-open the case."