FAMILY ABDUCTION IS NOT OK!


November 21, 2012

Source: hvinsider.com

Having done legal work for the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children for decades, the most important thing to know is that, not only is family abduction a crime, it is considered a form of child abuse.

According to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children: “family abduction has been characterized as a form of child abuse because of the harmful effects it has on children. Abducted children may be forced to lead a fugitive life under assumed names, sometimes with altered appearances, and kept out of school to avoid detection. The abductor may tell them the left-behind parent abandoned them, does not love them, or is dead. They may be neglected by their abductors and indoctrinated to fear law-enforcement officers and other adults who might help them.

In addition to possible long-term psychological harm, abducted children may be physically harmed at the time of the abduction as well as during the period of concealment. Parents most likely to harm their children are those who have serious mental and personality disorders, a history of violence or abuse, or little or no prior relationship with their child.

If you have ever seen the heartache of a parent who doesn’t know if their child(ren) is alive or dead, you will take this seriously. The last time I was involved in a Family Abduction, the abductor was found living on the West Coast, in a campgroup, with the children, by alert citizens who had seen the children on a milk carton.

For more information about the impact of abduction on victim children contact Take Root, an organization of adult members who were victims of parental abduction as children. Visitwww.takeroot.org or call toll-free at 1-800-ROOT-ORG (1-800-766-8674).”

For even a more in-depth look at Family Abduction please see the link below.

http://www.missingkids.com/en_US/publications/NC75.pdf

 

One key to ABP World Group`s successful recovery and re-unification of your loved one is to use all necessary means available

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Officers use stun gun on parent at Fayetteville middle school


November 7, 2012

Source: www.wral.com

FAYETTEVILLE, N.C. — Cumberland County deputies had to use a stun gun on a woman who they say assaulted school resource officers while trying to pick up her son Tuesday at a Fayetteville middle school.

A spokeswoman for the Cumberland County Sheriff’s Office said Allyison Alicia Mims-Whitner went to Lewis Chapel Middle School shortly before 2 p.m. to try to check her son out of classes for the day, but that the boy was afraid of her and did not want to go with her.

Mims-Whitner, according to authorities, is not the boy’s custodial parent.

As school resource officers questioned her, she became irate and combative and refused to leave without the child, authorities said.

That’s when she allegedly assaulted the officers, which prompted them to use a stun gun.

Mims-Whitner was arrested and charged with one count of trespassing, two counts of resist, delay and obstruction of justice and two counts of assault on a government official.

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Arbeidsgruppe skal se på håndtering av barnebortføringssaker


November 7, 2012

Kilde: Justis og Beredskapsdepartementet

Regjeringen har nedsatt en ekstern arbeidsgruppe som skal se på hvordan norske myndigheter håndterer internasjonale barnebortføringssaker. Regelverket skal også gjennomgås. – Det er viktig for regjeringen å ha et godt system for bistand og oppfølgning i internasjonale barnebortføringssaker. Derfor skal en arbeidsgruppe se nærmere på regelverket og norske myndigheters behandling av disse sakene. Målet er å finne løsninger som er til barnets beste, sier justis og beredskapsminister Grete Faremo. Arbeidsgruppen skal ledes av tingrettsdommer Torunn E. Kvisberg. Hun har blant annet skrevet doktorgrad om internasjonal barnebortføring og har bred erfaring på feltet.

Medlemmer i arbeidsgruppen er:

• Tingrettsdommer Torunn E. Kvisberg, Sør-Gudbrandsdalen tingrett (leder)
• Professor, dr. juris Kirsten Sandberg, Universitetet i Oslo
• Forsker Øivin Christiansen, Uni Helse Bergen
• Advokat Halvor Hjelm-Hansen, Advokatfirmaet Erbe & Co, Trondheim
• Politiadvokat Ellen-Sofie Terland, Kripos

Arbeidsgruppen skal legge frem sine forslag innen 31.12.2013.

Arbeidsgruppens mandat.

—————————————————————————————

Dette er et tiltak som hilses varmt velkommen. Vi ser frem til at regjeringen nå finner en måte å redusere antall bortførte barn ifra Norge. Vi håper også at det vil bli iverksatt tiltak for å straffeforfølge barnebortførere, og stoppe utbetalinger av bidrag til disse i en større grad enn det vi ser idag.

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Christmas A Time of Parental Child Abduction Risk


November 3, 2012

Source: SOS Childrens Villages 

It`s only a few weeks until Christmas. We know that many children will be abducted this holiday season. We urge you to be aware of the risk, and take precautions. Martin Waage, ABP World Group Ltd.

This post is from December 2011.

A European Union official has commented on the region’s work on international parental child abduction at the same time that security actors have warned parents to be vigilant about protecting their children over the holidays.

International child abduction is on an upward trend and the Christmas season is one of the higher-risk periods for parental abduction—particularly when it comes to multi-cultural relationships.

Yesterday, the European Union (EU) Commission Vice-President (Commissioner for Justice, Fundamental Rights and Citizenship), Viviane Reding, made a statement on the issue in Strasbourg.

“Preventing child abduction is an essential part of the EU’s policy to promote the rights of the child. I welcome the initiative of the European Parliament Mediator for international parental child abduction,” she said.

Within the EU, the International Law Association (ILA) Regulation mandates courts within EU member states to not refuse an order to return a child to his or her state of origin, if within the EU.

While the laws do not prevent or solve all cases of international parental child abduction, disputes between EU member states are solved more efficiently and swiftly, Ms. Reding noted.

Among the improvements made to the legal system is the removal of the exequatur rule.  This has allowed for a shorter time period in which courts may recognize and enforce judgments made by another state.

In international cases related to child custody and parental abduction, the Hague Convention applies. All EU member states are state parties to the 1980 Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction, and more countries are gradually signing on.

The Convention aims to protect children from the harmful impacts of abduction and retention by providing a protocol for international cooperation for their return to their country of origin.

According to a press release circulated by PR Web, the ABP World Group (which is an international leader in security matters related to child and adult abduction recovery) is warning parents worried that the other parent may illegally leave the country with their child to use new technology, such as GPS tracking devices, to protect their children.

Martin Waage, Managing Director of ABP World Group, stated, “With international child abductions happening at a record pace, ABP World Group urges parents to take every precaution to protect their children from this horrible fate.”

“Tragically, the number of global parental abductions occurring is an unknown due to failures by governments to keep accurate data,” he added.

However, using the situation in the United States as “microcosm” for the rest of the world, there could be as many as 125,000 children illegally abducted between now and 2020. In Canada, these numbers alone could reach 12,000-15,000, based on current reported cases with a modest 20 per cent growth factor, said Mr. Waage.

While Canada is also a signatory to the Hague Convention, though many countries in the Middle East and Asia are not. 

 

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Kidnapping and Terror in The Middle East and North Africa: Foreign Office raises Egypt terror threat


November 3, 2012

Source: The Guardian

Egypt terror threat raised from medium to high after series of deadly militant attacks across north Sinai.

The Foreign Office has raised its terrorism warning for visitors to Egypt from medium to high, particularly urging Britons against travel to the Sinai region, after a recent spate of militant attacks.

The change comes on the same day that a report revealed that police in Egypt had foiled a plot by al-Qaida-linked militants to attack tourists in the popular Red Sea coastal resort of Sharm el-Sheikh. The Mirror said the attack, involving firearms and rocket-propelled grenades, had been planned for Christmas.

A Foreign Office spokeswoman said she could not comment on any link, adding that changes to travel advice were based on “a number of sources”.

While Sharm el-Sheikh is on the southern tip of the Sinai peninsula, it and other nearby resorts, Taba, Nuweiba and Dahab, are excluded from the Foreign Office advice against travel to the region.

The Foreign Office spokeswoman said: “We can confirm that on 2 November we amended our travel advice for Egypt. Our advice makes clear that there is a high threat from terrorism in Egypt.”

Its website says: “Although security is tight throughout the country, especially in resort areas, there remains a high risk of attacks, which could be indiscriminate, including in public places frequented by expatriates and foreign travellers such as hotels and restaurants.”

The advice warns against all travel to north Sinai, where there have been attacks on security forces near the border with Gaza and Egypt, including one which killed 16 soldiers.

The advice says that even in south Sinai security has deteriorated this year, with a number of hijacks and kidnaps away from resort areas.

Egypt has been trying to rebuild its tourism industry after last year’s widespread unrest ended the long rule of Hosni Murbarak as president.

Last month the antiquities minister, Muhammad Ibrahim, reopened the restored pyramid of Chefren and six tombs at Giza, using the occasion to stress the country’s safety for tourists.

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Bortført jente returnert fra Filippinene


Kilde: Bortført.no

Jenta ble bortført av moren som 13-åring, og har vært på rømmen i to år. I går, 25. november, kom hun imidlertid hjem til Norge. Faren var den som først anmeldte bortføringen, men også politi og barnevern har engasjert seg aktivt, fordi moren anses som uegnet til ta seg av datteren alene.

Den 44 år gamle kvinnen ble pågrepet i byen Kalibo i Aklan-provinsen i september, med grunnlag i en arrestordre utstedt av Nordmøre tingrett.

Moren prøvde å søke asyl for seg og datteren, men er nå utvist fra Filippinene. Under normale omstendigheter ville det ha vært nærmest umulig for faren å få tilbake datteren. Denne saken er imidlertid ulik andre barneborføringssaker, fordi både norsk politi og barnevern tok den lange reisen til Asia for å forhandle med filippinske myndigheter om returen av jenta.

Kvinnen har brukt mye tid på ulike Facebook-grupper, hvor hun har demonisert jentas far og barnevernet for å skaffe seg sympati og tigge penger til bortføringsprosjektet. Tragisk nok har kvinnen også distribuert YouTube-klipp hvor datteren retter sterke personangrep mot faren. Vi ser en urovekkende tendens til at stadig flere foreldre skyver barna foran seg i sine svertekamanjer på nettet.

Mon tro hva som beveger seg i hodet til foreldre som legger ut hatmeldinger ved bruk mindreårige barn?

Et bortført barn er isolert og sårbart, og bortførern kan lett påvirke barnet til å si hva som helst. Men tenk hvilke lojalitetskonflikter dette kan skape for barnet senere. Slike videoer kan versere på nettet i lang tid. Man har ikke kontroll med hvem som laster ned og hvem som kan finne på å legge materialet ut igjen på et senere tidspunkt. Og ingen vet hvordan disse barna vil reagere om de konfronteres med dette senere i livet.

Nå er jena heldigvis tilbake i Norge, hvor hun bor hos sin far, og har kontakt med sine voksne søsken og resten av familien.

Her er nok et eksempel der et barn blir misbrukt i en foreldrekonflikt: Olivers Verden

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Warning: Christmas is parental kidnapping season


THE number of single parents kidnapping their own children is on the rise with hardline community groups advising fathers that government agencies are slow to act over Christmas.

There are nearly 200 parental abductions cases across the country every year and The Daily Telegraph understands that one single fathers’ group is telling its members the Christmas holidays are an ideal time to take children without consent because courts are on a go-slow.

Geoff Day condemned the agency and said estranged parents often take children during the holidays – and do not return them after access visits.

Mr Day said custodial parents were frustrated because Australian laws were so outdated that it could take months to set a court date to get a recovery order.

Karen Morris, whose agency Inter-relate runs three of the Federal Government’s new Family Relationship Centres, said long court waiting lists were part of the problem.

“The waiting lists in court are, and have been, an issue although they have started to come down,” she said.

“Christmas is so emotive. Parents argue a lot over who gets the kids. That combined with (the fact that) some services aren’t in full force does elevate the risk.”

NSW has one of the highest rates of international child abduction and solicitor Sally Nichols, who deals with a number of these cases, said international cases in particular were a trend – with mothers the common culprit.

“International (abduction) is generally on the increase, and domestically it’s chronic at this time of year,” Ms Nichols said.

One single mother, who spoke to The Daily Telegraph yesterday, said she was told government agencies could do nothing to retrieve her daughter, who was taken by her father before Christmas, without a copy of the official court order.

But almost two weeks later she still had not seen the order and was unable to find a solicitor to take her case.

“He ended up bringing her back, but if he had not done that he would still have her.

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Middle East / Lebanon: Experts urge state to curb Parental child abduction


Source: The Daily Star

BEIRUT: The government was urged Monday to sign up to an international agreement that would help reduce the rate of child abduction in Lebanon.

Experts from several countries gathered to discuss The Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction, of which Lebanon is not a signatory, and measures to combat what is a growing trend of missions relocated against their will.

“Our biggest problems come with non-signatories of The Hague convention,” said Allison Shalaby, the acting director of British anti-abduction charity Reunite. “The more awareness we can raise the more we can reduce the number of abductions.”

Shalaby, whose own daughter was abducted to Egypt, said that a large proportion of abductions were committed by parents who are unaware such action is illegal.

“A lot of parents don’t realize that they can actually abduct their own children,” she said.

Statistics collected by Reunite suggest that 70 percent of abductions are undertaken by mothers. Shalaby said that her organization had seen a 45 percent annual rise in reported cases.

British Ambassador Tom Fletcher, whose mission helped to organize the conference alongside the U.K.’s Foreign Office, said diplomats were increasingly finding themselves dealing with abduction cases.

“These are always complex, traumatic and sad,” he told The Daily Star. “There are never any winners. We wanted to explore how we can protect the children involved more effectively. This conference attempts to do that, for the first time bringing together embassy staff from across the world, with governments and relevant NGOs.”

He urged all countries to sign up to The Hague Convention, which protects children from abduction.

“We find that Lebanese authorities are usually keen to help resolve tricky cases. [The convention] gives us a better framework for dealing with cases of this sort.

“We should remember that these cases are not one-way – we are also trying to combat child abduction from the region to the West,” Fletcher said.

Personal status disputes in Lebanon are decided through religious courts and often favor the side of fathers.

The judiciary does not consider international parental kidnapping as a crime and it is permitted to prevent family members from leaving the country, even if they hold dual nationality.

A clutch of Western countries already alert foreigners to the risk of child abduction in Lebanon.

“Lebanese family law is very different from U.K. law and particular caution is needed if child custody is [or becomes] an issue,” Britain’s Lebanon travel advice states.

Australia’s Foreign Office warns dual nationality parents it is powerless to intervene in abduction cases committed in Lebanon.

“Australians [including mothers with children] have been prevented from leaving Lebanon when relatives have legally placed border alerts [known as ‘stop orders’] on them,” it says. “The Australian Government cannot prevent or overturn the issue of a ‘stop order’ on an Australian citizen.”

With a large expatriate population in Lebanon, Australia is no stranger to the idea of child abduction involving Lebanese victims.

Earlier this month, Melbourne’s Herald Sun reported that more than 100 Lebanese minors had been transferred to Australia on marriage visas, requiring them to marry their sponsors within nine months of arrival.

“In one case, Lebanese [teen] sought protection after she arrived on a prospective spouse visa for an arranged marriage to a man decades her senior,” the paper reported.

“She found he was a violent drunk who kept a previous wife and three children in an adjoining townhouse. She was granted a protection visa after her own family threatened to kill her.”

Lebanese lawyers Ibrahim Traboulsi, Laura Sfeir and Shawkat Howeilla offered advice to conference participants on the views various religious courts had on child abduction. Representatives of General Security were also present at the event, the first of its kind in the region.

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Kokaindømte Stina Brendemo Hagens flukt fra Bolivia til Norge blir dokumentar.


Source: NRK/Nyheter og VG Nett
Stina Brendemo Hagen kom i slutten av oktober tilbake Norge, etter å ha flyktet fra Bolivia i august.
Hagen rømte fra soningen av en fengselsdom, etter at hun ble tatt for å ha forsøkt å smugle kokain ut av landet.
Hun hadde på tidspunktet hun rømte gått over i åpen soning med meldeplikt, men skal med hjelp fra to innleide hjelpere ha rømt via Brasil til Norge.

Sendes på tv

Se klipp her: NRK/Nyheter

Flukten fra Bolivia ble filmet underveis, og TVNorge har kjøpt rettighetene til det som skal bli en tv-dokumentar
Med på turen var også den norske journalisten Jonas Forsang som den gang jobbet i det nå nedlagte mannebladet Alfa.
Forsang står fram i dokumentaren og forteller at han har knyttet et sterkt vennskapsbånd til Hagen.
– Til syvende og sist veier det menneskelige aspektet mye mer enn det presseetiske, sier Forsang.

Kan ha finansiert flukten

TVNorge sier de ikke vet nøyaktig hvem hjelpere underveis i flukten er, men Hagen bistås i flere ulovlige grensepasseringer.
TV-kanalen kan ikke utelukke at de ved å kjøpe rettighetene til dokumentaren har vært med på å finansiere flukten.
– Vi har ikke betalt noe til Stinas familie for dette. Vi har betalt for det materialet vi har fått tilbudt, sier kommunikasjonsdirektør i TVNorge Svein Tore Bergestuen til NRK og legger til.
– Men jeg kan ikke garantere for hva folk vi betaler har valgt å bruke de pengene på, sier Bergestuen.
– Betyr det at penger fra denne filmen kan ha vært med på å finansiere flukten?
– Det kan jeg ikke tenke meg
– Men du kan ikke utelukke det?
– Nei, sier Bergestuen.
“Stina Brendemo Hagen har forklart flukten med at hun var livredd for å bli drept. Hun hevdet at hun hadde kilder som sa at hun ikke ville overleve i to måneder til.”

Dokumentaren varer i én time vises på TVNorge mandag klokken 22.00.

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US officials worried about security at London 2012 Olympics


Source: The Guardian

US plans to send 500 FBI agents to protect its athletes as organisers admit underestimating number of security guards needed

The US has raised repeated concerns about security at the LondonOlympics and is preparing to send up to 1,000 of its agents, including 500 from the FBI, to provide protection for America’s contestants and diplomats, the Guardian has learned.

American officials have expressed deep unease that the UK has had to restrict the scope of anti-terrorism “stop and search” powers, and have sought a breakdown of the number of British police and other security personnel that will be available next summer.

The prime minister and other senior members of the cabinet, including home secretary Theresa May and culture and sport secretary Jeremy Hunt, are taking turns to chair security meetings about the Olympics, which are often dominated by the latest questions from the US, sources said. But Washington’s need for reassurance is exasperating British officials and anti-terrorism officials, who have privately raised concerns about the meddling, as well as the size of the US “footprint” in the UK during the games next year.

“We are not equal partners in this,” said one security official. “They are being very demanding.”

The friction is adding to the pressures on the London Organising Committee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games (Locog), which is responsible for preparing and staging the event. The Guardian has learned the committee is attempting to resolve a potential crisis over venue security, after conceding it had underestimated the number of security guards needed at the 32 sites across the country. Originally it had thought 10,000 guards would be enough, but after a review over the summer it now believes it will need up to 21,000.

Venue safety is not the responsibility of the police, so the firm G4S was awarded the contract to find and train the initial group. The company will this week begin an advertising campaign to meet that target. But the organising committee does not have the money to pay G4S to make up the shortfall, and does not believe the firm has enough time to do so, forcing ministers to turn to the Ministry of Defence for help.

The MoD has offered 3,000 soldiers, and another 2,000 in reserve – half the total required. The ministry is working within its own tight budget, and the late request for help has irritated some officials.

“What have they been doing for the last five years?” asked one. “There is less than a year to go and they’ve only just realised they need twice the number of security guards they first thought. Where is the money to pay for this coming from? It is an extra burden on the defence budget that we could well do without.”

Another source said: “Everyone has now realised 10,000 was an underestimate. This is one of the biggest problems facing the Olympic authorities because there is an absolute dearth of vetted and qualified private security guards. Senior police had advised ministers and the committee that 10,000 was too few, but nobody wanted to listen because of the cost involved.

“The military will have to stand up some people. Otherwise G4S have got the Olympic committee over a barrel.”

The problem will do little to reassure Washington, which will be supplementing its FBI personnel with an equal number of diplomatic security officials, some of whom will be armed. Though the UK’s Joint Terrorism Analysis Centre has lowered the threat of attack to “substantial” – the third level on the scale – western intelligence agencies remain wary.

They know it is possible that al-Qaida, or one of its affiliates, may attempt to disrupt the Olympics, with members of the US team being obvious targets.

The Home Office and Scotland Yard believe the UK has a robust security strategy, but this has not stopped American officials voicing their concerns.

The police response to the London riots, the arrest of a security guard at the London Olympics site earlier this year, and the arrests made shortly before the visit of the Pope last year have provoked anxiety among US officials. The repeal of section 44 of the Terrorism Act, which allowed police to stop and search suspects with near impunity, also raised alarm. One well-placed Whitehall source said the entire Olympic security operation was being prepared “with the US in mind”, adding: “The US will have no qualms in saying it is unsafe. If something happens and we say we did not have enough people, we are finished.”

Another official said: “The Americans are risk-averse, with a capital A and underlined. They want to see everything. We are not equal partners in this. They want to be on top of everything – building protection, counter-terrorism strategy and VIP security – everything.” Asked about the size of the US contingent heading to London next year, the official said: “They don’t do things by halves.”

In addition to the official American security entourage, the sponsors of the Games, including Coca-Cola, will have their own private security details, adding to the complexity of the policing operation.

The Ministry of Defence and the Home Office said no final decisions had been taken on the number of soldiers that might be needed to beef up security at some of the Olympic sites.An official said the need for an increase at the venues had become apparent when the Olympic committee began to role-play scenarios at some of the completed sites over the summer.

“The focus of the government and everyone involved is to deliver a safe and secure Olympic and Paralympic Games that London, the UK and the world can enjoy,” a government spokesman said.

“Ministers and officials from across government are working closely with the police and Locog to ensure we have a robust safety and security strategy.”

Officials said ministers, the Olympic committee and G4S were working together “to finalise the requirements for Olympic venue security”. “As with all significant national events, we will make the best and most appropriate use of available resources,” a statement said. “The Ministry of Defence have been fully involved in supporting Olympic security planning work.”

G4S said it was confident of recruiting 10,000 security guards, and could recruit more, as long as the Olympic authorities gave the company enough time. “We need to know as soon as possible,” said a spokesman.

The US state department declined to comment.

Locog said detailed security plans were being drawn up in collaboration with the government and security agencies.

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