Police in Norfolk, England arrested the parents of an 11-year-old boy who weighs 210 pounds on charges of neglect.
The man and woman, who have not been identified, were interviewed by police on the grounds of child cruelty because their son is obese, Sky News reported.
The unnamed boy is five feet, one inch tall with a body mass index of 41.9, which classifies him as obese.
The child's mother argued that the family is predisposed to obesity and claimed she had been trying to get her son to exercise by encouraging him to play more active video games.
"The idea they could take away my son scares me so much,” the mother told Britain’s Sun newspaper.
"His weight isn't that much of a big deal. I'm chubby and the whole of my husband's side of the family is big. It's genetics - you can be genetically fat," she said.
Police have defended the controversial move to arrest the parents, saying officers from their child abuse investigation team worked closely with health and social services to deal with "sensitive issues such as obesity and neglect of a child."
"While it is inappropriate to comment on this case specifically, it is important to stress that intervention at this level is very rare and will only occur where other attempts to protect the child have been unsuccessful," a police spokesman said.
Police arrested the parents after doctors at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in King's Lynn raised concerns with officers after treating the boy.