Canada/USA: Customs and Border Protection Officers Intercept Abduction Attempt


Peace Bridge port of entry in Buffalo, NY.

Buffalo, New York – U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers at the Peace Bridge port of entry encountered and refused the admission of a Canadian citizen, after discovering he was suspected of being involved in a parental abduction.

On July 27, CBP officers at the Peace Bridge port of entry encountered a Canadian citizen traveling with two minor Canadian citizen children.  During the primary inspection, the primary officer became concerned that the children were not authorized to leave the country after one of the children became visibly upset.  The family was escorted to secondary for further inspection.  (Due to the nature of the situation and age of the children, all names have been withheld).

CBP officers coordinated with Canadian law enforcement partners and confirmed that the subject had in fact taken the children from a sports camp in the Toronto, Ontario, Canada area without the custodial parent’s knowledge or permission and was not permitted to take them out of the country.  After coordination with the Canada Border Service Agency and the Toronto Police Department, CBP officers assisted in returning the children safely to Canada where they were reunited with their mother. The father was arrested by the Toronto Police Department.

“CBP officers are trained to identify indicators warranting further inspection of individuals arriving at the U.S. border,” said Director, Field Operations Rose Brophy. “Although our usual focus is on matters involving national security, our officers are committed to assisting law enforcement partners, helping to keep our communities safe, and in this case, protecting the innocent.”

If you have any questions or concerns regarding parental abduction to or from The United States or Canada, we can help.  Please feel free to contact us 24 / 7.  We are always available at contact@abpworld.com or by calling our offices – +1 (805) CHILD-11 (+18052445311)

Source

Canada/USA: Abduction attempt thwarted at Peace Bridge


BUFFALO, N.Y. (WKBW) – U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) announced a parental abduction was thwarted at the Peace Bridge Friday.

CBP officers encountered a Canadian citizen traveling with two minors at the Peace Bridge port of entry and during primary inspection the officer noticed one of the minors was visibly upset, leading the officer to believe the children were not authorized to leave the country.

The family was escorted for further inspection and CBP officers coordinated with Canadian law enforcement and confirmed the subject had taken the children from a sports camp in the Toronto area without the custodial parent’s knowledge or permission.

The father was arrested by the Toronto Police Department, the children were returned safely to their mother with the help of the Canada Border Service Agency and TPD.

“CBP officers are trained to identify indicators warranting further inspection of individuals arriving at the U.S. border,” said Director, Field Operations Rose Brophy. “Although our usual focus is on matters involving national security, our officers are committed to assisting law enforcement partners, helping to keep our communities safe, and in this case, protecting the innocent.”

If you have any questions or concerns regarding parental abduction to or from The United States or Canada, we can help.  Please feel free to contact us 24 / 7.  We are always available at contact@abpworld.com or by calling our offices – +1 (805) CHILD-11 (+18052445311)

SOURCE

USA: Former CentCom major sentenced to 3 years for kidnapping daughter


Andrew Haley Morcombe (inset), a former major attached to Central Command at MacDill Air Force Base, , was setenced Thursday to 3 years in federal prison for international parental kidnapping in the 2014 abduction of his daughter. Morcombe, 51, claimed he took the girl, in violation of a custody agreement with his ex-wife, to protect her from alleged abuse. But federal prosecutors said there was no evidence that such abuse occurred.  [Andrew Morcombe photo courtesy of Morcombe]Andrew Haley Morcombe (inset), a former major attached to Central Command at MacDill Air Force Base, , was setenced Thursday to 3 years in federal prison for international parental kidnapping in the 2014 abduction of his daughter. Morcombe, 51, claimed he took the girl, in violation of a custody agreement with his ex-wife, to protect her from alleged abuse. But federal prosecutors said there was no evidence that such abuse occurred. [Andrew Morcombe photo courtesy of Morcombe]

TAMPA — A daughter’s first day of school, her first lost tooth. These are memories that parents treasure.

They’re also ones Jane Lempero missed out on when her ex-husband kidnapped their daughter and held her in Dubai for two years.

On Thursday, a federal judge sentenced Andrew Haley Morcombe to three years in prison for international parental kidnapping.

Morcombe, 51, kept the 5-year-old out of the U.S. from 2014 to 2016 — violating a court order — by forging travel documents.

“I had to fight to be a mother to my own child,” Lempera said at the sentencing.

Morcombe, a former major in the U.S. Air Force, previously worked at U.S. Central Command at MacDill Air Force Base.

The two met in Florida in 2002 and married four years later. They welcomed their daughter in 2008.

The marriage dissolved three years later. But soon after Lempera filed for divorce, Morcombe began filing court petitions alleging his wife had physically abused him. All were deemed unfounded, and the pair agreed to joint custody of the girl.

Morcombe relocated to Germany for work, and the two ironed out an agreement that allowed him to see his daughter there on a temporary basis.

In 2013, while Lempera was vacationing in Europe with her now-husband and the girl was staying with a close acquaintance of the mother, Morcombe flew from Australia to Florida and told authorities Lempera had disappeared without explanation.

He took their daughter back to Australia, alleging sexual misconduct by Lempera’s now-husband. A court ruled there was no evidence, and Lempera regained custody of the girl in October 2013.

In 2014, despite a court agreement that the parents would share the daughter’s time within the United States, Morcombe picked up the girl for a regularly scheduled visit and took her to Dubai, using a fraudulently obtained passport.

In 2016, as Morcombe and the girl were flying from Germany to London, a missing person’s notice led to them being stopped. The girl was returned to her mother, and Morcombe was arrested.

A jury convicted him of international parental kidnapping in April.

On Thursday, U.S. District Judge Mary S. Scriven sentenced Morcombe to three years in prison, the maximum allowed under the law. She also ordered one year of probation, $95,000 in fines and $90,000 in restitution.

Andrew Morcombe said he recognized the impact of his actions, and that he would now fight for his daughter through legal means. He has retained an attorney for the civil side of the pair’s dispute, which is ongoing.

Morcombe’s attorney, Bjorn Brunvald, said they intend to appeal the conviction.

Scriven said Morcombe has shown the “most limited levels of remorse possible,” and that his actions took away years and memories that can’t be retrieved for the mother and daughter.

“If the court could, it would exceed the maximum sentence,” the judge said.

If you have any questions or concerns regarding parental abduction to or from The United States, we can help.  Please feel free to contact us 24 / 7.  We are always available at contact@abpworld.com or by calling our offices – +1 (805) CHILD-11 (+18052445311)

source

Italy/Spain:Juana Rivas: Court jails mother who hid with sons in custody battle


Spanish defendant Juana Rivas appears before the judge

A Spanish court has jailed a woman for five years for going into hiding with her two sons rather than hand them to the father, whom she accused of abuse.

Juana Rivas has also been stripped of custody rights for six years and told to pay hefty legal costs.

Spanish politicians and women’s groups have criticised the verdict.

The long-running custody battle for the boys – the boys, now aged 12 and four – has become a rallying point in Spain’s battle against gender violence.

What did Rivas do?

She took the boys from the family home in Italy in 2016, and travelled to Spain under the pretext of visiting family.

Instead of returning, she lodged a complaint in Spain alleging domestic abuse and later defied Spanish court orders to return the boys to their father.

“A woman running away from terror to protect her children can’t be deemed abduction,” she said last year.

Italian citizen Francesco Arcuri (C) arrives to the court of Granada, on August 21, 2017.Image copyrightGETTY IMAGES
Image captionMr Arcuri has denied any allegations of abuse – including the circumstances surrounding his previous conviction

Her actions became a social media sensation in Spain, where #JuanaEstáEnMiCasa (Juana is in my house) was a major trend as she avoided authorities.

She eventually turned herself in and the children were reunited with their father.

What did the court rule?

The court in the southern city of Granada said Rivas had no proof of domestic violence and had illegally taken her children from their father.

She had “exploited the argument of abuse” and had carried out “child abduction”, the judgement said.

Her former partner, Italian Francesco Arcuri has a previous conviction for violence against Ms Rivas.

But despite this the court said there was no evidence of mistreatment since then and an assessment of the oldest child showed no signs of psychological trauma consistent with abuse.

What reaction has there been?

Rivas’s lawyer has called the judgement a “failure of the judicial system” and indicated she would appeal against the verdict.

Spain’s Deputy Prime Minister Carmen Calvo has said that Rivas will not be jailed until the sentence is confirmed.

“The interests of the two children must be protected, even in these moments,” she said.

Antonio Maíllo, head of a left-wing federation of parties in the southern Andalucia region, said the verdict was “barbaric” and set a worrying precedent.

Demonstrations on 14 August 2017 in Madrid, Spain, in support of Juana RivasImage copyrightGETTY IMAGES
Image captionThe case divided public opinion in Spain, with some supporters on both sides

“This country has changed but the judiciary is carrying on with outmoded parameters,” he said.

The president of the Progressive Women’s Foundation, Yolanda Besteiro, told Spain’s Efe news agency that the ruling was disproportionate “because the situation of mistreatment was not taken into account”.

She said the ruling “demonstrates the lack of empathy and ignorance of what gender violence is and how abusers behave”.

Some groups are preparing demonstrations, in a move reminiscent of the widespread protests over the infamous “wolf pack” sexual assault case in Pamplona.

What does the father say?

Mr Arcuri denies any abuse of either Rivas or the children and says he has been the victim of a media campaign.

He has a previous conviction for violence against Rivas on one occasion in 2009 – but he now says he only admitted to the charge to avoid a lengthy legal battle and retain visiting rights with his son.

The couple reunited after that incident and had a second son.

Mr Arcuri’s former partner of 10 years also came to his defence last year, telling Spanish media she did not believe the abuse allegations.

If you have any questions or concerns regarding parental abduction to or from Italy or Spain feel free to contact us 24 / 7.  We are always available at contact@abpworld.com or by calling our offices – +1 (805) CHILD-11 (+18052445311)

source

Australia / Lebanon: ’60 Minutes destroyed my life’: Taxi-driver used in bungled Lebanon kidnapping says he knew NOTHING of the failed plot and wasn’t even paid before he was abandoned in a Beirut jail – where he is STILL awaiting trial


 

The Lebanese taxi driver used by 60 Minutes in its botched child abduction has said he knew nothing of the kidnapping and two years on is deep in debt and facing criminal charges.

Khaled Barbour, now 34, spent six months in Lebanon’s Ebbe jail in Tripoli, spent close to $15,000 in legal bills and lost his job for his role in driving Australian woman Sally Faulkner in a failed attempt to reclaim her two young children in Beirut.

After accepting an offer of US$500 in cash to ‘drive foreigners around Beirut for two days’ in 2016, Barbour said the decision ‘destroyed his life’, telling News Corp he ‘had never been to a police station and all of a sudden I am in prison.’

Khaled Barbour (pictured), the Lebanese taxi driver used by 60 minutes in its botched child abduction has said he knew nothing of the kidnapping and is in debt and facing criminal charges
Barbour spent close to $15,000 in legal bills for his role in driving Australian woman Sally Faulkner in a failed attempt to reclaim her two young children in Beirut (pictured)

Claiming the ordeal has left him with no money, Mr Barbour said he had to sleep at a fire station where he has volunteered as a Civil Defence firefighter for 17 years.

Sally Faulkner went to Beirut to try to bring her two children Lahela, five, and Noah, three, back to Australia after they were taken to Lebanon by their 32-year-old father Ali Elamine in 2014.

Sally Faulkner (right) went to Beirut to try to bring her two children Lahela, five, and Noah, three, (pictured) back to Australia after they were taken to Lebanon by their 32-year-old father Ali Elamine (left) in 2014

Barbour works as a freelance driver as he has been unable to find work with a taxi company and now rents a taxi at the cost of $43 a day, the Daily Telegraphreported.

It has been two years since Noah, then three, and Lahela, then five, attempted to be taken from the streets of Beirut with Barbour as the getaway driver.

But Channel 9 left him behind in jail, failing to contact him or deliver on the promised payment, Barbour claims.

It has been two years since Noah, then three, and Lahela, then five, were attempted to be taken from the streets of Beirut with Barbour as the getaway driver 

Mr Barbour’s lawyer Yusuf Lahhoud told News Corp the wait would be between three and five years ‘at a minimum’ before a judge decided his client’s guilt or innocence.

’60 Minutes bring him and put him in this situation without him knowing,’ he said.

‘He’s innocent. He knows nothing. It was him as a taxi-driver.’

Although Barbour is currently free on bail, his mental health remains unclear.

Channel Nine has since avoided questions about what responsibilities the network held to Mr Barbour.

Daily Mail Australia contacted the Nine Network for comment but did not receive a reply by the time of publication.

Lahela and Noah now live with their father in Lebanon. Channel Nine has since avoided questions about what responsibilities the network held to Mr Barbour

 

If you have any questions or concerns regarding parental abduction to or from Australia or Lebanon feel free to contact us 24 / 7.  We are always available at contact@abpworld.com or by calling our offices – +1 (805) CHILD-11 (+18052445311)

source

 

USA / Saudi Arabia: Pa. woman reunited with sons kidnapped by Saudi Arabian dad


From left, Elyas, Ibrahim and Muhammad Sayed in photos issued in 2013 when the boys went missing.

From left, Elyas, Ibrahim and Muhammad Sayed in photos issued in 2013 when the boys went missing.(MissingKids.com)

WILLIAMSPORT — Three young boys taken by their father to Saudi Arabia in 2014 are back with their mother in Lycoming County.

The circumstance of how Elyas, Ibrahim and Muhammad Sayed were reunited with their mother Jessica Socling in the Jersey Shore area is unknown because she declined to be interviewed, saying the family sought privacy.

“We have all been very damaged from this experience,” she said.

An arrest warrant remains active for Socling’s former husband, Majed Sayed, should he return to the United States from Saudi Arabia.

He was indicted in U.S. Middle District Court in April 2014 on charges of international parental kidnapping and conspiracy. The U.S. does not have an extradition treaty with Saudi Arabia.

Cori Lynn Mancuso, a Lycoming College honors graduate living in Williamsport at the time, also was indicted.

She subsequently pleaded guilty, admitting she concealed the kidnapping plans for a month. She was sentenced to a year in prison in March 2015.

Judge Matthew W. Brann found Mancuso plotted the kidnapping of the children, then deflected questions about the children’s whereabouts the night of the abduction.

Sayed and Mancuso said they were married in a Muslim ceremony not recognized in the United States but she obtained a divorce when she returned to the country.

Socling and Sayed were married in 2004 but had separated in November 2012. She was granted a divorce by default in April 2015.

In April 2013 she obtained an emergency order from a Lycoming County judge giving her primary custody and limiting Sayed’s time with the children, as well as imposing passport restrictions. At the time, Sayed was enrolled in a master’s program at Shippensburg University.

However, one Sunday Sayed did not return the boys, all under the age of 10, to their mother by the agreed-upon time. Socling confirmed with  Washington Dulles International Airport that they  were on a direct flight to Saudi Arabia.

Her attempts through the State Department and the Saudi government to gain access to her children were futile although she was able to communicate with them through Skype.

“It is hard for me to adequately put into words the pain and frustration of two years of struggling and disappointments, both from my own government and the Saudi government,” Socling said in November 2015.

If you have any questions or concerns regarding parental abduction to or from The United States or Saudi Arabia feel free to contact us 24 / 7.  We are always available at contact@abpworld.com or by calling our offices – +1 (805) CHILD-11 (+18052445311)

source

India may not sign Hague convention on international child abduction


Around 90 countries are signatories to the convention that protects children under 16 from “wrongful removal or retention” by a parent.

There has been a steady rise in parental abductions as more and more Indians go abroad to work or study.

The government is unlikely to sign in near future an international treaty that makes inter-country abduction of children by parents a punishable offence, two Union women and child development (WCD) ministry officials have said.

Signing the Hague convention on civil aspects of international child abduction would be against the interest of women who flee bad marriages, they said.

India needs to have a domestic law in place before joining the treaty. “But the Union women and child ministry has decided against drafting a domestic law to address the civil aspects of international child abduction,” one of the officials said.

Around 90 countries are signatories to the convention that protects children under 16 from “wrongful removal or retention” by a parent. It also mandates that the country to which the parent flees with the child has to send back both to the child’s “habitual place of residence”.

There has been a steady rise in parental abductions as more and more Indians go abroad to work or study. Children bear the brunt of parents’ marital disputes and are often forced to return to India by one of the quarrelling parents. In most cases, it is the mother who returns with the child.

“Instead of framing a domestic law, we have decided to put in place an internal mechanism to redress all such complaints that come to us from women who have run away from a violent marriage and returned to India with her children,” a second official said.

The ministry is setting up a panel headed by the chairperson of the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR). Its members will include a representative of the embassy of the country from where the parent has fled with the child. “We will forward any complain that comes to us to the NCPCR committee, which will examine the case,” the second official said.

Based on the recommendations, the WCD secretary-led nodal agency that looks into NRI marital disputes would pass a speaking order that would help the woman in her legal battle in India as well as abroad.

Last year, the ministry set up a committee under justice Rajesh Bindal of the Chandigarh Judicial Academy to examine the issue of international child abduction. In its report, the panel suggested against joining the Hague convention.

If you have any questions or concerns regarding parental abduction to or from India feel free to contact us 24 / 7.  We are always available at contact@abpworld.com or by calling our offices – +1 (805) CHILD-11 (+18052445311)

source