Abducted Lithuanian boy to stay in Northern Ireland
A boy abducted by his ex-soldier mother and brought to Northern Ireland does not have to be returned to Lithuania, the Court of Appeal has ruled.
The nine-year-old child's grandparents launched a legal bid to get him back after he was snatched and bundled into a van while walking home from school.
His mother had left him in his grandparents' care from around his birth in 2005 until 2012, so she could do a year's national service.
But senior judges in Belfast held that they no longer had rights of custody by the time of the abduction in 2012.
Despite dismissing their challenge, Lord Chief Justice Sir Declan Morgan describe the mother's actions as reckless.
"It is fortunate that the child was not more severely damaged," he said.
In her statement the woman – who moved to Northern Ireland in 2006 – said she and her partner pulled her son into a van as he walked home from school with his grandmother.
He was then transported through Europe to Northern Ireland, the court heard.