Probation in Child Abduction Case: Mother who was the Focus of an International Manhunt Won’t Serve Any Jail Time

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In 2012, Pfeifer, 32, was arrested in France last December after violating custody orders that she return with her sons. 

“The safety of the two sons that are at issue in this case was my primary concern.”

— Prosecutor Deanne Castorena

LOS ANGELES (KABC)  reports: A mother accused of keeping her two young sons from their fathers has escaped jail time. Maria Pfeifer was the subject of an international manhunt for violating custody orders and failing to return from vacation in Europe.

“For us, for the defense team, the big result was she’s not serving a day in jail on this case.”

— Pfeifer’s attorneys

On Monday, Pfeifer, a former Los Angeles resident, was sentenced to three years of probation and ordered to pay restitution.

[See ABC7 VIDEO ‘s report here]

Prosecutors says Pfeifer plead guilty to one felony count of custody deprivation. The sentence imposed Monday allows for Pfeifer, who is nine months pregnant, to travel out of the country.

“They are not seeking to punish or seek revenge or exact tit-for-tat upon Ms. Pfeifer. They just want to raise their sons in a secure environment without threat of further abduction.”

— Deanne Castorena

“I think her departing the country will be the best thing all around for both the adult victims and the minor children involved in this case,” Castorena said.

Pfeifer’s attorneys say their client was pleased with Monday’s sentencing.

“For us, for the defense team, the big result was she’s not serving a day in jail on this case,” defense attorney Dmitry Gorin said.

In 2012, Pfeifer, 32, was allowed to take the boys on a 10-day trip to her native Slovakia and the Czech Republic, but never came back. She was arrested in France last December after violating custody orders that she return with her sons.

She was accused of disguising her sons, then 4 and 10 years old, by trying to pass them off as girls….(read more)

ABC7 Los Angeles



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