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France

Russian mother of kidnapped girl to be extradited to France

Latest update : 2009-05-21

The mother of Franco-Russian three-year-old Elise, accused of hiring two thugs to kidnap her daughter and beat up her former husband, has lost an extradition appeal in Hungary and will be transferred to France by May 28.

AFP - A Russian woman accused of abducting her three-year-old daughter will be handed over to the French authorities next week after losing her appeal against an extradition order, police said Tuesday.
   
Irina Belenkaya, who was detained by Hungarian police as she tried to cross the Ukrainian border with her daughter Elise last month, lost her appeal against an order to extradite her to France, her lawyer Robert Fridman said.
   
"The extradition will take place between now and May 28, according to a ruling by the court of appeal," Fridman told the Hungarian news agency MTI.
   
Police confirmed to AFP that they would "hand over (Belenkaya) to the French authorities" in the next 10 days.
   
The three-year-old, who has been the centre of a bitter custody battle between her French father Jean-Michel Andre and her Russian mother since they split in 2007, was abducted on March 20 by two men and a woman in the southern French city of Arles, where she lived with her father.
   
The father was badly beaten during the kidnapping.
   
But after Belenkaya was stopped on the Hungarian-Ukrainian border on April 12, Elise was taken back to France by her father, while Belenkaya remained in custody in Hungary awaiting a French extradition order.
   
She faces charges of kidnapping and complicity in assault in France.
 

Date created : 2009-05-19

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