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Parents kidnap their own children after child custody battle

For a parent, there can be few events more stressful than being faced with the risk or reality of losing their right to raise their own child. Child custody cases are among the most heavily litigated and contentious forms of law that come before the courts, in Colorado or elsewhere. However, even in the midst of emotionally trying times, it is important that parents follow the rules and procedures outlined within state law to fight for their parental rights.

A national news story exemplifies the risk that parents take when they choose to move beyond the bounds of the law in an effort to reunite with their children. Following a long and embittered child custody dispute, a mother and father lost custody of their two small boys, ages 2 and 4. The parents recently abducted the children from the care of their maternal grandparents.

The family then fled by sea to Cuba. The Cuban authorities were alerted to their presence, and assisted in detaining them and returning them to United States soil. The parents are now facing serious criminal charges and are being held in jail awaiting initial hearings in the matter. They are charged with kidnapping, child neglect, and interference with custody. The father faces additional charges for his role in removing the children from the home of their grandparents.

While it is understandable that these parents wanted to reunite with their small children, the manner in which they attempted to do so was ill-advised. By taking matters into their own hands, they not only harmed their own chances of regaining custody of the boys, they also placed themselves in a position to face criminal charges. For Colorado parents who are in the midst of emotionally charged child custody proceedings, it is imperative to remember that the best means of reaching a positive conclusion is an aggressive and carefully devised legal approach.

Source: ABC News, Parents in Cuba Kidnap Case Isolated From Jail Population, Alyssa Newcomb, April 10, 2013

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