x Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 28 July 2017

Mother denies kidnapping son after father won custody battle, Dubai court told

The French father claims that his ex-wife would leave the boy with strangers while she went partying with friends.

DUBAI // A mother has been accused of kidnapping her son and disappearing with him for a year after a court ruled that the four-year-old’s father should have full custody.

The French father claims that the 46-year-old British mother would leave the boy with strangers while she went to parties with friends.

However, at Dubai Court of Misdemeanours on Thursday the mother, A L, denied kidnapping, adding that her ex-husband threatened to kill her.

Prosecution records state that on March 9, 2012, the mother kidnapped her son, L L.

The father, B L, said in a letter submitted to the prosecution on February 18 last year that he was awarded full custody of his son after a verdict from the Dubai Sharia courts on August 12, 2012.

“She did not execute the verdict then changed her residence and disappeared with the boy, whose custody she lost because of her negligence,” said the father in a letter submitted to prosecutors.

“She would forget his vaccinations, prevent the father from providing him with medical care, since he suffers eczema, and leaves the boy with strangers during her repeated travels and stays up late at parties with her friends.”

The day the mother was said to have kidnapped the boy, the father called police after she failed to show up with her son at Safa Park.

“I texted her several times but she did not answer, then I tried calling her but her mobile was switched off,” the father said to police.

The 38-year-old aviation engineer told officers that his ex-wife lived at the Dubai Foundation for Women and Children before she disappeared.

“We are divorced since 2011,” said B L during prosecution investigations. He recalled that, on October 29 last year – after a year of searching for his son – he was tipped off about his ex-wife’s whereabouts.

He went to Jumeirah Beach Residences and saw his son at a private park for two residential buildings.

“I took him, so the nanny told me she would call her madam, and I told her I was the boy’s father,” said B L.

In court, the mother said: “I did not kidnap my son. But after one of our court hearings, my ex-husband threatened to kill me if I didn’t give him the boy so I got scared and stayed away from him.”

Reports in the UK claim that the mother said her wealthy ex-husband had exploited Dubai’s legal system and left her living in poverty.

The next hearing is due to be held on February 11.

salamir@thenational.ae