According to the Washington Examiner, Fairfax County, Virginia man Faical Chebbi allegedly kidnapped his children, ages 2 and 5, during a scheduled visit last month and took them to Tunisia. Chebbi was subsequently charged with international parental kidnapping in federal court. The children’s parents divorced earlier this year, and their mother, Johnson-Chebbi, was awarded sole custody of the kids. According to court documents, she previously obtained a protective order against the children’s father after he threatened to kill her. Johnson-Chebbi told the Examiner that, because the orders granting her custody were on file with the Tunisian Embassy, the children’s father should not have been able to obtain Tunisian passports for the kids. Despite the fact that Tunisia has not ratified the 1980 Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction and is unlikely to extradite Chebbi to face his pending criminal charges in the U.S., the children’s mother remains optimistic about the children’s return.
READ MORE: Dad takes kids in Fairfax, flees to Tunisia, The Washington Examiner (December 20, 2011).