Parental child abduction is a very serious issue that affects fathers' rights and the child custody rights of parents in Georgia and across the country. The problems of parental child abduction become significantly more complex when a parent takes a child out of the country in violation of a child custody order.
In the past, we have written about the problems many fathers face when their child is taken to a country that has not signed the Hague Convention on Child Abduction, which is an international treaty that requires recognition of valid child custody orders across international boundaries. Now, we are seeing reports of a story that demonstrates how international parental kidnappers are treated when a foreign country recognizes the Hague Convention.
A five-year-old girl who was abducted by her mother was missing since June 2010 has been safely returned to her father, Bijan Richard. The girl's mother had taken the girl during a parental visit and left the country. Richard received word from an informant in Germany who met the girl's mother. She told the informant conflicting stories about Richard, so the informant did some research on the internet and found that the girl had been abducted away from her father.
Acting on the informant's tip, Richard recently traveled to Germany to find his daughter, only to return to the U.S. after being unable to locate the 5-year-old girl. Last Wednesday, Richard received a call from his attorney. His daughter had been found and her mother was in police custody.
Richard flew back to Germany and met his girl for the first time in almost a year. She flew into his arms and yelled "Daddy!" Richard remarked it was almost like the day she was born all over again. Richard missed the last 10 months of his daughter's life, but he is grateful that she is now home where she belongs.
Meanwhile, the girl's mother is facing felony charges of violating a child custody order. She is presently in custody in Germany and is awaiting extradition to the United States.
Source: KWGN, "Abducted Littleton girl, 5, found in Europe, mother faces charges," Tammy Vigil, 4/12/2011