A Canberra mother who "cried wolf" by falsely alleging her cop ex-husband stalked and hacked her email has lost custody of her daughter.
The mother's allegations, aired during a during a bitter family court battle, included making repeated false reports against the father - an officer with the Australian Federal Police - to the force's professional standards unit.
A judgment from the case, published earlier this month, says the bitter falling out started in late 2013 after a spat over whether the daughter would attend an exclusive private school.
The father opposed her enrolment on the basis of cost and faith and the Federal Circuit Court ordered the girl instead attend a co-educational non-government school, against the mother's wishes.
The unhappy mother then began to make allegations about the father, including accusing him of stalking, assault, and hacking her email.
The allegations included reporting him to AFP professional standards and a failed attempt to take an apprehended violence order out against him.
But she never produced evidence to support the accusations, the court heard.
The father disproved the claims, with evidence he had been interstate or overseas at the time of the alleged incidents.
The relationship between the parents became strained and fractured and the father applied to the court for sole custody of the child.
The parents previously had shared parental responsibility, but the child lived with her mother the majority of the time.
The father's application was supported by a court-appointed independent children's lawyer.
During a three-day trial last year, the court heard the girl had missed 26 days of school in the first four months of the educational year – all while staying with her mother.
In addition, the child had been late or signed out early on 55 occasions between February and early July.
A family consultant recommended a change in custody in order to prevent serious long-term harm to the child.
But the mother's lawyers submitted the father "reneging" on his agreement to pay his daughter's school fees at the private school had caused the hostility.
The lawyers argued that if he agreed to send the child to the school then the antagonism would end.
But Judge Warwick Neville ordered the girl move in with her father, and spend some weekends and afternoons with her mother.
Judge Neville said he had concerns about the mother's ability to provide for the child's psychological needs.
"She has completely severed any reasonable prospect of a business-like or remotely workable parenting relationship with the father. An order for sole parental responsibility must be made in favour of the father," the judge wrote.
"In my view, the actions of the mother have decidedly led to this result.
"The mother seems entirely unable, and unwilling, to come to grips with, or have any relevant insight into, her conduct, and its impact on the father ... and in turn the risks it poses for [her daughter]."
Judge Neville dismissed much of the mother's evidence as "dishonest", "unreliable", "capricious", "inaccurate", and "untrustworthy".
"In my view, there is little that she would not say or do to achieve her own ends, especially to thwart the father's time with and care of the child.
"For the mother, attention to detail and truth was a disposable commodity. She exhibited an alarming inability to face any reality that did not suit her own purposes.
"Further, she lacks significant insight into the consequences of her conduct, particularly with respect to proper, basic prudential parenting."
But the judge lamented that the decision would not end the mother's attitude or actions towards the father.
"As she has done with almost everything else, [the outcome of the court case] will be sheeted home to someone else, particularly the father and his partner.
"She will not accept any responsibility for either her actions or the consequences that must necessarily flow from them."
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