Lawyer For Parents Who Malnourished Their Baby With Vegan-Only Diet Claims They’re Victims Of A ‘Vegan And Anti-Vax Witch Hunt’

A  couple from Sydney, Australia, is facing up to five years in prison after feeding their child a vegan diet so deficient that she lost teeth from malnourishment.

The unnamed father, 34, and mother, 32, were first brought into court last May after the 20-month-old girl suffered a seizure and was taken into foster care.

In addition to negligence in the home, the child had no birth certificate, no vaccinations, and no follow-up appointments with doctors.

Her mother left the hospital three and a half hours after the child was born.

The foster mom who took over for caring for the girl said that the girl’s condition was “terrifying” when she was brought in:

“She couldn’t sit up… she couldn’t say any words… she couldn’t hold her bottle.”

The child, at 20 months, weighed roughly only double of her birth weight and wears clothing fit for 12-month-olds.

“People are shocked at how small she is,” the foster mother said.

The father’s lawyer has come to his client’s defense by saying that the Queensland man has been the subject of a “vegan and anti-vax witch hunt.”

The baby is undergoing monthly and bimonthly tests, which the foster mother says have “traumatised” her.

“She begins to scream and cry if she goes into a medical room and the door is closed,” she said.

In addition to the malnourishment, the girl was found to be suffering from rickets, a bone disease caused by lack of Vitamin D. Doctors fear that this could impact her health for the rest of her life.

The girl’s father claimed he was not vegan, nor was he anti-vax. He said the mother dictated their household, and he was primary caretaker, doing all the driving, cooking, and cleaning.

However, the judge presiding over their case, Sarah Huggett refused to believe the father was “powerless” to do something and should’ve “known something was wrong” because his daughter wasn’t walking, talking, or developing normally.

The girl’s elder brothers, who are aged four and six years old, have also been removed and placed into government care.

The parents pled guilty to failing to provide for her and for “causing danger of serious injury.”

Each parent will reportedly face up to five years in jail.


Written by Mike Walsh

Mike is a writer, dancer, actor, and singer who recently graduated with his MFA from Columbia University. Mike's daily ambitions are to meet new dogs and make new puns on a daily basis. Follow him on Twitter and Instagram @mikerowavables.