Kidnapping for ransom is spreading across the world


January 23, 2013

Source: qz.com

Investors and businesses in emerging markets increasingly have another thing to worry about: kidnapping for ransom.

kidnapping-graphic

What was once a crime associated mostly with Latin America is becoming worryingly common across the rest of developing world. “Over the last four, five years, kidnapping has become more global of a phenomenon,” says Jim Brooks, CEO of Control Risks. “It’s always happened globally, but now we’re seeing people exploit kidnapping as a means of revenue generation for whatever they’re doing.”

kidnapping_02

About 55% of the world’s recorded kidnaps-for-ransom in 2004 were in Latin America (Colombia, Mexico and Venezuela generally have some of the highest numbers). Last year, the region accounted for only a quarter of the incidents, and Asia and Africa made up over half. Ransoms average around $2 million, according to Greg Bangs of Chubb Group of Insurance Companies, but in some places like Sub-Saharan Africa they are as much as $60 million. See the list of the top 20 countries with the highest numbers of kidnapping cases here (p. 84).

Why are we seeing the spread of this trend? For one, places that have been recently destabilized are reporting more cases,  like the Middle East following the Arab Spring in 2011. Or foreign investment and travel by foreigners to new markets may simply be providing more kidnapping opportunities in more places. Brooks says, “I suspect it’s a variety of things from the global war on terror to higher economic challenges and increasing… knowledge and understanding of [kidnapping for ransom] as a criminal enterprise.”

Note:

For the CAC course (Conduct after Capture) contact ABP World Group. The objective of this course is to better prepare civilians for a kidnap/hostage situation and improve their chances of getting home alive.

 

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20 Years Later, Man Wanted in Parental Abduction is Back in St.Thomas


January 22, 2013

Source: AM980

A 51-year-old man is now in custody of St.Thomas Police, 20 years after a warrant was issued for his arrest in connection with an alleged case of parental abduction.

st_thomas

A warrant was issued for Benham Slim back in 1993 after Police say he fled to Beirut, Lebanon with his three little girls – aged 2, 6, and 7 – and had no plans on returning to Canada.

Four years later, in 1997, Slim was arrested at Toronto’s Pearson International Airport, but was released on bail after promising to return the children, and appear before the courts the following year.

Slim did neither, and an additional warrant was issued for his arrest.

In early 2003, 10 years after they disappeared, all three girls were re-united with their mother who had since moved to Texas.

Slim, however, remained at large.

He wasn’t picked up until late October of last year by Police in Detroit where he’s remained in custody while Police in St.Thomas and the Crown Attorney’s office began the extradition process.

Just recently, the 51-year-old waived extradition to Canada and has now arrived back in St.Thomas to face parental abduction charges from 1993, as well as charges related to skipping the country back in 1998.

 

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We wish you all a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year…


Dear Friends

May you be blessed with a safe, peaceful holiday in the company of family and friends, both far and near.

From our families to yours, we wish you a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

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Our 24/7 Emergency Phone will be open during Christmas.

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Mor og bestemor i fengsel for barnebortføring


Oktober 22, 2012

Kilde: Bortført.no

Kvinnen som i fjor høst nektet å tilbakeføre sin 10 år gamle sønn fra Spania er dømt til seks måneder fengsel, og guttens mormor er dømt til 45 dager fengsel. Dommen falt i Nedre Romerikes Tingrett 19.10.12, og begge kvinnene må sone ubetinget for overtredelse av straffelovens § 216 første ledd.

Faren, som har daglig omsorg, hentet gutten hjem fra Spania med hjelp fra spesialagenter. Operasjonen ble utført i overensstemmelse med politiet i Norge og Spania.
Vi har tidligere skrevet om hvordan moren har produser filmopptak hvor sønnen forteller om vold og overgrep utført av faren. Hun har også drevet en hatkampanje mot faren på nettsiden Olivers Verden. I dommen slås det fast at Oliver ble forklart av moren hva han skulle si på videofilmen.
Her er noen utdrag fra Nedre Romerikes Tingretts dom av 19.10.12 ( tiltalte nr. 1 er moren):

“Når det gjelder videosnuttene ble disse tatt opp av Oliver rett før han skulle reise tilbake

til Norge. Videosnutten gir etter rettens mening ikke grunnlag for tiltalte nr.1 til å tro at
Oliver ikke ville tilbake til faren. Disse videosnuttene gir etter rettens oppfatning et skremmende eksempel på
manipulering fra tiltalte nr. 1s side. Det gis inntrykk av at det er Oliver som regisserer
det hele, hvilket i seg selv er svært påfallende.”

”I dommeravhør tatt av Oliver den 20.12.2011 forklarte han at det var mamma som fortalte hva han skulle si på videofilmen.”

”Retten legger til grunn som sikkert at tiltalte nr. 1 gjennom videoopptakene ville skaffe
seg grunnlag for å holde Oliver tilbake i Spania og at hun gjorde dette ved å manipulere
Oliver.”
” Subsidiært er anført fra tiltalte nr. 1 at det foreligger nødverge, jf straffeloven § 48
eventuelt nødrett etter § 47. Retten kan ut fra den beskrivelsen som er gitt foran ikke se
at det foreligger noe rettsstridig angrep fra fornærmedes side eller at man ved å unndra
Oliver fra farens omsorg reddet han fra en uavvendelig fare. Tvert imot har tiltalte nr. 1
gjennom sin handlemåte selv utsatt Oliver for en svært alvorlig belastning.”
” Det er også et skjerpende moment at tiltalte nr. 1 på en ekstrem måte forsøker å holde
Oliver tilbake. Det vises til videosnuttene av Oliver som etter rettens mening på en
grotesk måte manipulerer Oliver til å si det hun ønsker han skal si.
I formildende retning vites intet å anføre.”

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Father, step-mother and uncle arrested in child abduction case


August 23, 2012

Source: Globaltvbc

KELOWNA, BC; A young Lumby girl is back at home with her mother after her father attempted to abduct her Tuesday morning. 

The Oyama man and his wife along with a brother from Winfield were arrested and taken to Vernon police cells and are expected to face charges of abduction, assault and break and enter.

At about 8:35 a.m. Tuesday, Lumby RCMP were called after a girl was allegedly forcibly removed from her home.

It’s alleged the man also assaulted the girl’s mother and a second daughter. A landlord witnessed the abduction and attempted to intervene.

The child was carried to a waiting vehicle. The mother attempted to stop them, but was pushed aside.

There were three adults in the vehicle as it was seen driving away.

Police located the vehicle and made three arrests at Ricardo Road in Coldstream. The trio was released from jail on a promise to appear in court in September to face the charges.

Read it on Global News: Father, step-mother and uncle arrested in child abduction

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Turkey: 736 files regarding international child abduction cases seen in 11 years


July 22, 2012

Source: todayszaman.com

A total of 736 files regarding international parental child abduction cases were processed between 2000 and 2011 in Turkey, according to recent data from the Justice Ministry.

The data provides detailed information about the procedure followed in international parental child abduction incidents in Turkey. Firstly, requests for legal assistance made from other countries by individuals claiming that their children have been abducted and brought into Turkey or have been wrongfully detained in the country are thoroughly examined by the Justice Ministry, and following the examination, the relevant files are sent to the chief public prosecutor’s office in the location where the child is believed to be residing.

In these cases of parental abduction, if the parent who has taken the child without the other parent’s consent refuses to return the child to their country of habitual residence, an official lawsuit is launched against them.

Turkey is party to the Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction. It signed the Hague convention on Jan. 21, 1998, and the convention entered the Turkish domestic code on Feb. 15, 2000, when it was published in Turkey’s Official Gazette. From the time it was published to the end of 2011, 128 requests for legal assistance regarding child abduction cases in Turkey were made to other countries, while 618 requests for legal assistance were made to Turkey.

The data also showed that the return of foreign criminals to their home countries is being carried out in line with the European Convention on Mutual Assistance in Criminal Matters. Criminals are sent to their home countries after a thorough examination of the relevant documents by the Justice Ministry. The data noted that 53 criminals from 16 countries were returned to Turkey in 2011. Of these 53 criminals, 17 were sent back from Germany, while eight were sent back from the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (KKTC). Furthermore, the number of criminals caught in Turkey and subsequently deported in 2011 was eight. Most were deported to Germany and the US.

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Snatched: Non-Custodial Parent Abductions Rise During Summer Visits


Source: yougotkids.com

Split by divorce, millions of parents around the world share custody of their kids, delivering them back and forth on weekends and holidays. In rare but devastating cases, some parents refuse to give them back.

 

According to Child Find of America, Inc., more than three-fourths of all child abductions – more than 200,000 kids in 1999 alone — involve a non-custodial parent, and two-thirds of these kids were taken by their dad or another male relative. Eighty-two percent of the perpetrators said they intended to permanently affect custody because they were unhappy with the court decision, angry at the break-up or resentful of their ex-spouse’s new partner or lifestyle. Others reported that they had been denied visitation rights for not paying child support, or that they were protecting their kids from abuse.

The truth is these children are in for a world of hurt.

Yanked from family, school, the comforts of home and friends, many are forced to live life on the run, moving from place to place – and even to other countries – to avert authorities. Many are told that the parent they left behind doesn’t love or want them anymore, and many are exposed to emotional, physical and sexual abuse.

While these cases are very rare, if you’re ever involved in a separation or divorce and you suspect your ex-partner is becoming unstable, don’t hesitate to take action. If your ex is impulsive, easily angered, hostile, revengeful or abusive, with a spotty employment record and few responsibilities, he fits the typical profile.

First, strengthen the line of communication between you and your child.

While you don’t need to divulge details of your divorce, make sure your child knows you love him and will always want him, no matter what anyone else says. Help him feel comfortable coming to you with any worries.

Make sure he knows his full name, address and phone number, and matter-of-factly teach him how to approach trusted family members or friends, or even police or emergency crews, if he ever needs help. Explain how to make a long-distance or collect call, and let him know he has the right to call you no matter who says he can’t.

Meanwhile, stash as much up-to-date information as you can on your ex-spouse, including his social security number, driver’s license number, vehicle registration number, bank account and credit card numbers, passport and medical insurance information. Keep a list of addresses, phone numbers and birthdays of all of his relatives and close friends.

You should also keep a current photo and important data about your child so that you can share it with authorities in an emergency. To help, Kidproof has designed a new iPhone app, called YouGotKids™ that allows you to easily store your child’s photo, nickname, birthdate, descriptors and medical information. The app stores info on your child’s school, sports coaches, club leaders, child care providers, family doctor, dentist and medical insurance company, and offers one-touch dial-out to police and other emergency-response agencies. The clever app even reminds you every six months to update your child’s photo. The full version is available for $1.99 at the Apple Store. In addition, you’ll want to keep a paper file of your child’s birth certificate, custody orders, dental records and passport.

When dealing with your ex, avoid confrontations and encourage cooperation and compromise. Opt for mediation, if possible, over a court order. If your ex is threatening to take your child, have someone else witness or tape the threats, and keep a log for the authorities. Don’t hesitate to request a restraining order, supervised visits or bond posting before visits.

Once custody has been determined, make sure all papers specify the days and times of visits, where your child will live, and that he should not be removed from your state or country without a judge’s consent. Provide a certified copy of the custody order, along with a photo of the non-custodial parent, to your child’s school, daycare facility, camp or sitter and specify in writing who is allowed to pick up your child.  Keep two copies for yourself, in two separate, safe places, and consider filing copies with the counties where you and your ex live.

Get a passport for your child, specify in writing that your child may not be taken out of the country without your written permission, and have the passport office mail the document to you with a return-receipt requested.

Finally, don’t use child support as a condition for allowing your ex to see your child; this fans the flames and gives your ex a “reason” to flee. Follow the court’s orders to the letter, and get emergency help if you need it by calling the police right away.

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Parental abduction: Thailand Child Abduction Law


Source: Thailand Family Law Center

In the context of Thailand family law, child abduction cases typically occur during a child custody dispute, when one parent flees a legal jurisdiction with any children who are the subjects of the dispute. International law and Thailand family law may come into play when a child is abducted from a foreign country and taken to Thailand, when a child is taken from Thailand to a foreign country, or when a child is abducted by a parent within Thailand.

What should I do if my child is abducted and taken to Thailand?

The first thing a parent must do if a child has been abducted and taken to Thailand is to contact legal authorities, their embassy in Thailand, and an attorney who can help put you in touch with family law attorneys in Thailand.

Can the Hague Convention on Child Abduction be used in Thailand?

The Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction provides a procedure for parents who have had their children abducted by the other parent. The Hague Treaty on Child Abduction is executed through the governments of treaty member countries, but normally requires an attorney to file the appropriate documents with the government authority responsible for the retrieval of the child.

Thailand has formally acceded to the convention; however, at this time the proper procedures for acting upon the convention have not been codified into Thai law. This means that the convention, like a variety of other Thai legal subjects, falls into the “grey area” of  Thailand law. For this reason, parents are encouraged to pursue their cases in the Thailand courts in the procedure outlined below.

What is the procedure for retrieving a child who has been taken to Thailand?

There is a great deal of misinformation stating that parental abduction in Thailand is not considered a crime under Thai law, and cannot be prosecuted. This is technically not true.

In order to retrieve a child that has been abducted by a parent in Thailand, the parent who is seeking the return of the child must seek full custody of the child in Thailand Family Courts. Once full custody has been obtained, a parent may use the Courts to issue a demand that the abducting parent attend Thai Court and return the child.

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Norway court gives custody of two Indian children to their uncle


Source: NDTV

Stavanger, Norway:  The nightmare for an Indian couple ended after a Norwegian court ruled that their two young children will be handed over to the children’s uncle. The children, with their uncle, are expected to be back in India in a few hours from now. 

The children’s mother and their grandparents, both paternal and maternal, are already in India. Their father, however, is still in Norway.

Anurup and Sagarika Bhattacharya have fought a long legal battle with Norwegian authorities to get their three-year-old son and one-year-old daughter back to the family. During the hearing in the case involving two Indian children, which was held in Stavanger District Court on April 17, the Child Welfare Services (CWS) and the children’s parents and the uncle,  Arunabhas Bhattacharya, submitted a joint statement to the court stating that they agreed to the solution that the children’s uncle would be their guardian. The CWS, which has kept the children in foster care since May last year, made a recommendation to the Stavanger district court that the children’s custody should be given to the uncle and they should be allowed to return to India.

“I am very relieved today,” said Anurup Bhattacharya after the verdict was announced. “I am glad the year-long nightmare is finally over… Hope the children are back soon. I congratulate the Indian government for the excellent work and I hope others in distress also get relief,” said CPM leader Brinda Karat, who had extensively campaigned for the release of the children.

Trouble began when the Bhattacharyas noticed their son had been showing symptoms similar to autism. The workers of the kindergarten where the three-year-old used to go reported his condition to the CWS which began observing the family closely ostensibly to offer help even inside the privacy of their homes. The parent’s interactions with the children were recorded on camera and were analysed. The CWS later concluded that the boy was suffering from attachment disorder which they said was a result of a disconnect between the mother and child; they also said the child had witness violence between the parents.

The CWS workers started then interfering over how their children should be fed or where and with whom they should sleep. They asked the father to take leave from work to help build the relationship.

On May 11, 2011, when three CWS workers came to the Bhattacharya home, an argument broke out with the mother. One of the workers said the little girl should be taken outdoors as the atmosphere at home was too tense, but a little later the parents were told on the phone that their daughter had been in emergency foster care. On the same day, their son who was away at the kindergarten was also taken away directly to an undisclosed location. He too had been put in emergency foster care. A court battle followed but the children have not been returned to the family’s care since.

In November 2011, a family court in Stavanger declared that the children will stay in foster care till they turned 18. The CWS refused to give the custody of the children to any family member. Sagarika’s parents then started a campaign back in India and sought the help of the Foreign Ministry which intervened and got the case reopened.

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UK / Pakistan – BHC calls for laws to stem child abductions


Source: The Nation

“Only two Muslim countries have ratified the Hague Convention”

ISLAMABAD (PPI) – British High Commissioner Adam Thomson has said that legislation is inevitable to curb the rising incidents of international child abduction.

He said this while addressing a seminar organized by SACH, an NGO, in collaboration with British High Commission here on Wednesday. Khalida Salimi, Executive Director SACH, Ahmer Bilal Sufi, President Research Society of International Law, Justice (Retd) Syed Manzoor Hussain Gillani and others were present on the occasion.

Addressing on the occasion, the British High Commissioner said that ratification of Hague Convention on the civil aspects of International Child Abduction Convention, 1980 will benefit both the countries, Pakistan and United Kingdom.

He said that over one million Pakistanis are living in UK, adding both the countries are tied in different strong bonds.

He further said that in the multi-culture marriages increase the incidents of abduction of children, adding during the last year 55 incidents of child abduction were reported between Pakistan and UK.

More cases are coming from Pakistan, he said, adding there is a very little hope that abducted children will return.

‘We talk about the mutual interests, UK and Pakistan are one family and law provides the bridges between the two countries”, he said.

He hoped Pakistan will become a global partner by ratifying Hague convention.

He was optimistic that this step would further cement ties between the both countries.

Earlier, Ahmer Bilal and Justice (Retd) Syed Manzoor Hussain Gilani addressing the seminar said that the Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction (October 25, 1980) was according to law of Pakistan and Islam.

They called for ratifying the said Convention to ensure children rights.

Ahmer Bilal also discussed the legal obstacles in the ratification of the Hague Convention.

Khalida Salimi shared the objectives of the constitution. Majid Bashir gave a presentation on The Hague Convention on the Civil aspects of international Child abduction. He said it meant to secure the prompt return of children wrongfully removed to or retained in any contracting state as well as to ensure that rights of custody and of access under the law of one contracting state are effectively respected in other contracting states.

He emphasized the need to ratify the convention in order to implement measures to enable parents currently separated from their children to maintain contact with them, ensure visitation rights and resolve their cases in any country.

Zulfiqar Naqvi and Zafarullah Khan Advocate discussed the barriers in handling any international parental child abduction case in the absence of the 1980 Hague Convention and urged the need for such a campaign to increase public awareness of the Convention by provision of information to the stakeholders. Ali Sultan, a speaker informed that only two Muslim countries have ratified the Hague Convention.

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