A PHARMACIST from Little Clacton who pretended to be the mother of a baby boy and had him circumcised without his parents’ consent has been sparred jail.

Martina Obi-Uzom, 70, was given the responsibility of looking after an 11-month-old boy in September 2017 by his parents, who went away for the weekend.

While in her care the devout Christian, who is the director of The Lighthouse Pharmacy, decided that the child should conform to her Nigerian religious beliefs.

Posing as the boy’s parents, Obi-Uzom and a male accomplice then took him to a Jewish mohel in London where, unbeknown to his actual mother and father, he was circumcised.

Appearing at Inner London Crown Court last week, two years after carrying out the awful crime, Obi-Uzom was sentenced for one count of unlawful wounding.

Despite suggesting the act warranted time in prison, Judge Freya Newbery referenced Obi-Uzom’s ‘impeccable character’ and ‘community work’, before handing her 14 months imprisonment, suspended for 18-months.

Her punishment will also see her have to pay costs of £1,500 within two months.

CPS Senior Crown Prosecutor Kathryn Iyer said: “This was a grave violation by a woman who was entrusted to look after and protect the victim from serious harm.

“Whilst in her care, Martina Obi-Uzom took the 11-month-old boy for a circumcision procedure without the permission or prior knowledge of his parents.

“She also posed as the child’s mother in order for the procedure to be carried out.

“Although male circumcision is legal, her actions were undertaken without the consent of the parents which was a gross breach of trust.”

The despicable offence has been greatly condemned by Little Clacton councillor Jeff Bray.

Describing the nature of the unlawful action as “disturbing”, Mr Bray extended his condolences to both the child and family.

Mr Bray said: “It is always disturbing to hear of stories like this one, particularly when they are in any way connected to my ward.

“My first thoughts are of course with the child involved and his family, who were no doubt distraught as a result of the events that took place.

“Whilst some may feel that the sentence imposed was lenient, it is difficult to comment without intimate details of the court proceedings.

“I hope that the victims will feel that justice has been done and that the outcome will deter others from such horrible actions in future.”

The Lighthouse Pharmacy has been contacted for comment.