FGM and the law
FGM is a crime in Scotland and throughout the UK.
In Scotland it is illegal under the Prohibition of Female Genital Mutilation (Scotland) Act 2005. In England, Wales and Northern Ireland, the practice is illegal under the Female Genital Mutilation Act 2003.
It is also against the law to take a girl abroad for FGM. A UK national or permanent UK resident is guilty of a crime if they carry out FGM outside Scotland. It is also a crime for a person to assist or arrange the FGM of another person, even if the actual FGM occurs outside Scotland.
To date there have been no prosecutions in Scotland but it is believed that the practice continues in the UK, as well as girls resident in the UK being taken abroad for the purpose of FGM.
Anyone found guilty of an FGM offence, or of aiding and abetting such an offence, faces a penalty of up to 14 years in prison, or a fine, or both.
If you are concerned about a girl at risk of FGM and it is an emergency situation you should dial 999 and ask for the Police. Police Scotland has officers with special responsibility for FGM, and they are available to provide information in non-emergency situations. In this case, call 101, the national non-emergency police number and ask to be put through to the Divisional Public Protection Unit.