Judge puts reporting ban on Alfie Patten 'dad at 13' story

A High Court judge in London has today imposed reporting restrictions on the story of “father at 13” Alfie Patten.

The order, made by Mrs Justice Baron in the Family Division, does not prevent publication of details already in the public domain, but bans the revelation of any new information.

On Friday, The Sun published a front-page splash following the birth of a baby girl to 15-year-old Chantelle Stedman in Eastbourne, East Sussex.

It has been reported that 13-year-old Alfie Patten is to undergo a DNA test to determine whether he is the father of baby Maisie.

Following a hearing in private today, a statement was provided to reporters explaining the judge’s reasons for making the order.

It said the ban had arisen “as a result of press intrusion” and also “because of allegations made by at least two others that they may be the putative fathers of Maisie”.

“The court received information that the private and family life of the mother and baby had been disrupted to such an extent that the court was concerned about the mother and baby being unable to lead a normal family life,” the statement said.

“It was equally important to the court that the young putative father should be able to live his life and return to school.”

The restrictions remain in place until 6pm on 10 March, when a further hearing is scheduled.

East Sussex County Council confirmed earlier today that it had written to the Press Complaints Commission, which has launched its own inquiry into the story, expressing “serious concern about the level of media interest”.

A council spokesman told Press Gazette this afternoon: “We believe the interests of the children are not being well-served by the current media coverage.”

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