US pastor convicted for aiding parental abduction


August 16, 2012

Source: Sydney Morning Herald

BURLINGTON, Vermont: An Amish-Mennonite pastor has been found guilty in the US of abetting international parental kidnapping, in a case involving same-sex unions and conservative Christian opposition to homosexuality.

The pastor, Kenneth Miller, faces up to three years in prison. A federal jury in Burlington, Vermont, took four hours to convict him of helping Lisa Miller (no relation) flee to Nicaragua with her daughter, Isabella Miller-Jenkins, in September 2009 to evade court-ordered visits with Ms Miller’s former partner in a civil union in Vermont.

After the verdict, about 100 of Kenneth Miller’s supporters from the Beachy Amish-Mennonite sect, the women in traditional long dresses and head scarves, gathered outside the courthouse to sing Amazing Grace and other hymns.

After splitting up with the former partner, Janet Jenkins, in 2003, Ms Miller declared herself a born-again Christian, denounced homosexuality, began interfering with visits and tried to strip Ms Jenkins of her legal rights as a parent. Ms Miller moved to Virginia and, in 2009, as a frustrated Family Court judge in Vermont threatened to transfer custody of the girl, disappeared with her daughter.

The Beachy Amish-Mennonites regard homosexual behaviour as a sin.

In the trial, Miller’s lawyer, Joshua Autry, did not dispute the evidence that Miller had helped arrange for Ms Miller and her daughter to fly from Canada to Nicaragua and obtain shelter from missionaries in his sect. But Mr Autry argued that Miller did not realise Ms Miller was defying court orders at the time of the flight.

The prosecutors cited abundant evidence that Miller tried to hide what Ms Miller was doing – he specified that their flights should not touch down on American soil and gave the pair traditional Mennonite garb to wear as a disguise.

His case was also undermined by the reluctant testimony of a fellow Amish-Mennonite pastor in Canada, who said he had refused to transport Ms Miller and Isabella across the US-Canada border because he feared they might be breaking the law.

Miller had to give up his passport, but will remain free for now.

The judge gave the defence 30 days to file post-trial motions.

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CHILD ABDUCTION PREVENTION


CHILD ABDUCTION PREVENTION

The following information is excerpted from The National Center for Missing & Exploited Children and the U.S. Department of Justice, Office of Justice Programs, Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention

In light of the high profile abductions of several children, the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children (NCMEC) encourages families not to panic. Instead, parents need to empower themselves with information that can help protect their children.

CHILD ABDUCTION: STATISTICS

  • Parental abductions and runaway cases make up the majority of missing children in the United States. In 2002 there were about 797,500 children reported missing, or nearly 2,185 per day. The vast majority of these cases were recovered quickly; however, the parent or guardian was concerned enough to contact law enforcement and they placed the child into the FBI’s National Crime Information Center – a computerized national database of criminal justice information. It is available to Federal, state and local law enforcement and other criminal justice agencies.
  • Each year there are about 3,000 to 5,000 non-family abductions reported to police, most of which are short term sexually-motivated cases. About 200 to 300 of these cases, or 6 percent, make up the most serious cases where the child was murdered, ransomed or taken with the intent to keep.
  • The NCMEC analyzed more than 4200 attempted abductions from February 2005 to March 2010 and found that 38% of attempted abductions occur while a child is walking alone to or from school, riding the school bus or riding a bicycle; 37% of attempted abductions occur between the hours of 2:00pm through 7:00pm on a weekday; 43% of attempted abductions involve children between the ages of 10 and 14; 72% of attempted abduction victims are female; 68% of attempted abductions involve the suspect driving a vehicle.
  • Research shows that of the 58,000 non-family abductions each year 63% involved a friend, long-term acquaintance, neighbor, caretaker, baby sitter or person of authority; only 37% involved a stranger.

SAFETY TIPS FOR PARENTS:

  • Be sure to go over the rules with your children about whose homes they can visit when you’re not there and discuss the boundaries of where they can and can’t go in the neighborhood.
  • Always listen to your children and keep the lines of communication open. Teach your children to get out of dangerous or uncomfortable situations right away, and practice role-playing and basic safety skills with them.
  • Teach your children in whose car they may ride. Children should be cautioned never to approach any vehicle, occupied or not, unless accompanied by a parent or trusted adult.
  • Make sure children know their names, address, telephone numbers and how to use the telephone.
  • Choose babysitters with care. Obtain references from family, friends and neighbors.

SAFETY TIPS FOR CHILDREN:

  • Always check first with your parents or the person in charge before you go anywhere or do anything.
  • Always take a friend when you play or go somewhere.
  • Don’t be tricked by adults who offer you special treats or gifts or ask you for help.
  • Don’t be afraid to say no and get away from any situation that makes you feel uncomfortable or confused. Trust your feelings.
  • Don’t get into a car or go near a car with someone in it unless you are with your parents or a trusted adult.
  • Never take a ride from someone without checking first with your parents.
  • Never go into a public restroom by yourself.
  • Never go alone to the mall, movies, video arcades or parks.
  • Stay safe when you’re home alone by keeping the door locked. Do not open the door for or talk to anyone who stops by unless the person is a trusted family friend or relative.

INTERNATIONAL PARENTAL ABDUCTION

In situations where parents have not resolved the issue of child custody, and one of the parents has ties to another country, there is the risk that that parent might take the child with them to a foreign country. Parents who are in this situation can find useful information about international parental abduction in “A Family Resource Guide on International Parental Kidnapping” published by the U.S. Department of Justice, Office of Justice Programs, Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention.

For emergency assistance contact:

ABP World Group International Child Recovery Service

The goal of ABP World Group Ltd. is to locate, negotiate and recover your missing child.
We can dispatch personnel to most locations in the world; we specialize in locating missing children up to ages 18.

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Parental Child Abduction and Abducted Children Recovery


Christmas holidays – A time for parental child abductions

The holiday season sees a sharp rise in the number of parental abductions in Australia.  With emotions running high between separated and divorced parents during the Christmas/New Year period, a small number of parents will take the drastic step of abducting their own children.  Most of these children are eventually recovered, but a small number of parents will experience the agony of never seeing their children again. Read more below.

The number of British children abducted by one of their parents and taken abroad is set to double as the holidays start, the Foreign Office has warned.

Read more here: The Telegraph

Airlines Sued for Their Role in Parental Child Abduction

Read more here:Lawdiva’s Blog

Steps You can Take To Prevent Parental Child Abduction

Read the article here: ABP World Group Ltd`s Blog

Parental Child Abduction – Lesson 1

Parental Child Abduction – Lesson 2

For Help and assistance: ABP World Group international recovery services

Follow our updates on Twitter and FacebookOur website: http://www.abpworld.com

ABP World Group international child recovery service


ABP World Group International Child Recovery Service

The goal of ABP World Group international child recovery services is to locate, negotiate and recover your missing child. We can dispatch personnel to most locations in the world; we specialize in locating missing children up to ages 18. Areas of expertise: Parental abduction, Missing children, Kidnappings, Runaway children and Counseling.

Unfortunately in this day and time parental kidnapping happens and we are here to help you trough this difficult period. We are aware parental child abduction can be difficult to resolve, but we use professional operatives with the skills and expertise to help find a resolution.

We also provide:

• Executive protection
• Close protection high or low profile
• Surveillance
• Investigation
• Security consulting
• Medical services
• Anti kidnap logistics and planning
• Abducted and missing children recovery
• Missing person investigations
• Panic room / Safe room construction
• Risk Management

For more information, visit our web site: www.abpworld.com

Follow our updates on Twitter and Facebook

ABP World Group International Child Recovery Service ( Child Abduction)


We can locate, negotiate and retreave your children from any country in the world.

We specialize in locating missing children up to ages 18.

Areas of expertise: International parental abduction, Missing children, Kidnappings,
Runaway children and Counselling.

Unfortunately in this day and time parental kidnapping happens and we are here to help you trough this difficult periode.
We are aware parental child abduction can be difficult to resolve, but we use professional operatives with the skills and expertise to help find a resolution.

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

We understand that your case investigation needs to be tailored to your pacific circumstances and must changing as the mission evolves.

happy-children

ABP World Group provides Close Protection services, surveillance and investigation worldwide.Our personnel are discrete and professional, with international training and experience.

Published by: ABP World Group International Child Recovery Service

Visit our web site at: www.abpworld.com

U.S