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Cross-border custody battle continues for Canadian mom

A Quebec woman has been released from jail where had been held since Dec. 9. The woman is wanted in the U.S. state of Georgia for kidnapping her children and bringing them to Canada. However, her legal problems aren't over. She is still facing extradition to the U.S.

The woman, who is a Canadian citizen, has been fighting extradition since 2010, when she moved to Quebec with her three children, ages 9, 10 and 14. She told child protection officials in the province that the children's father was abusive. He had sole custody of the kids at the time that she brought them to Canada. Further complicating the situation is that the woman was granted full custody of the children by a Quebec court. The father has reportedly not fought that decision.

The case has been making its way up the rungs of the Canadian judicial system, with courts and the justices on them seeing the matter differently. Earlier in December, Justice Minister Jody Wilson-Raybould said that she would review the decision of the Supreme Court, which voted by a four-to-three majority to allow the extradition. The mother, whose name has not been released, went so far as to go on a nearly two-week hunger strike prior to the justice minister's decision.

Of course, child custody disputes can be heart-wrenching. They can be hardest of all on the children caught in the middle. However, the solution is never to take your children from the other parent in defiance of court orders. Instead, it's essential to seek experienced legal guidance and let your lawyer work to get you the custody or visitation rights you're seeking and, if necessary, a protection order.

Source: CBC News, "Quebec woman facing extradition to U.S. released from jail," Dec. 27, 2015

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