American mother reunites with children abducted by Russian father
LONDON, July 22 (RAPSI) – Two boys held in Russia by their father have been found and returned to their mother in London by decision of Russian and UK courts, The Telegraph wrote on Tuesday.
Ilya Neustadt, 37, a Russian academic who was a lecturer at London Metropolitan University, took Daniel (age 8) and Jonathan (6) to Russia for the winter holidays in January 2013, but then refused to bring them back to their mother. Rachael Neustadt, an American who resides in the UK, asked the court to return her two sons to her.
Mr. Neustadt was sent the High Court ruling to return the children, and Ms. Neustadt traveled to Russia in February and July 2013 to negotiate the issue with her husband.
“The High Court was told on Monday that after 18 months the boys had been reunited with their mother and younger brother and are now safely back in London,” the newspaper writes. “Ms. Neustadt said she was delighted to have her three boys together again.”
Her lawyers wrote in their complaint that the High Court ruling be recognized as legal and enforced, citing the 1996 Convention on Jurisdiction, Applicable Law, Recognition, Enforcement and Co-operation in Respect of Parental Responsibility and Measures for the Protection of Children. The convention came into effect in Russia on June 1, 2013, and has been applied in Russia for the first time in the Neustadt case.
In the fall of 2013, the Moscow City Court ruled that Mr. Neustadt should return his two sons to his former spouse, in accordance with the High Court decision to leave the boys with the mother following their parents’ divorce. The Moscow City Court upheld the UK court’s decision. The Russian court’s board of appeals ruled against the ex-husband’s appeal, and the decision has come into effect in Russia.
The boys, Daniel and Jonathan, were both born in Switzerland before the family relocated to London in January 2011. Daniel holds a Russian passport and an expired US passport. Jonathan holds German, Russian and American passports.
The couple also has a third boy, two-year-old Meir, who lives with his mother in London.
Two months after the family moved to London, Ms. Neustadt initiated proceedings against Ilya Neustadt, citing domestic violence, and was granted sole custody of the children.