- Associated Press - Friday, December 18, 2015

KANSAS CITY, Kan. (AP) - A Lawrence woman accused of fleeing to Europe with her two daughters has been indicted by for kidnapping by a federal grand jury.

The Lawrence Journal-World (https://bit.ly/1TUK3W0 ) reports that Samantha Elmer was indicted Thursday on charges of parental kidnapping, making a false statement on a passport and aggravated identity theft.

Prosecutors say Elmer took the 9-year-old and 11-year-old girls in October and boarded a flight from O’Hare International Airport in Chicago to Vienna, via Istanbul, ahead of a custody hearing and a trial on theft charges in Johnson County in early November.

The girls’ father reported to Lawrence police that they had not been to school in six days. Bush had said Elmer had moved to Lawrence with the girls two days before their disappearance. He said he contacted Elmer, who told him that their daughters missed school because they were ill.

A welfare check was conducted at Elmer’s home and authorities discovered that they were missing.

Elmer and her daughters were tracked down by officials with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and she returned to the U.S. with her daughters earlier this month, and was arrested at an airport in Kansas.

She faces up to three years in prison for the kidnapping charge, and a maximum of 10 years in prison for the passport charge. She is being held at the Leavenworth Detention Center.

Elmer’s attorney, Tim Burdick, has previously declined to comment on the case.

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Information from: Lawrence (Kan.) Journal-World, https://www.ljworld.com

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