News

PM urged to help keep girls here

The girls' mum (left) meets with Federal MP Alex Somlyay.
The girls' mum (left) meets with Federal MP Alex Somlyay. Brett Wortman

PRIME Minister Julia Gillard has been asked to intervene and help the four missing Sunshine Coast girls fighting to stay in Australia.

Federal MP Alex Somlyay's has written to Ms Gillard early this morning requesting her involvement in the ongoing saga.

The girl's mother and their two aunts were in Mr Somlyay's office when he sent the letter to Ms Gillard's office.

"We are asking for her intervention as soon as possible," one aunt said.

 In his letter to the Prime Minister, Mr Somlyay said he believed "there are more questions than answers with regard to the court process".

"Laura was at the mercy of the courts when her legal team didn't turn up and because they were representing her on a pro bono basis and on the day in question, she was told that paid work would have to take priority."

He asked Ms Gillard to intervene "as a matter of urgency" and put a stop on the childrens' passport while this matter "can be examined by suitably qualified legal representatives of the Commonwealth Government".

Mr Somlyay said this was the "most unjust situation I have seen in my 23 years in Federal Parliament".

He said he would send a copy of the correspondence to Opposition Leader, Tony Abbott and Shadow Foreign Minister, Julie Bishop.

A warrant has been issued for the four children who are facing deportation to Italy.

The children, aged from nine to 15, were taken by their aunt from their Maroochydore schools around 11am yesterday.

The alert was raised when the children were not handed over to a scheduled meeting with the Department of Communities in Chermside at 3pm.

The mother of the children told the Daily last night she had "no idea" where her children were.

She went with another aunt to Federal MP Alex Somlyay's office last night in an 11th hour bid to stop the deportation of her four children to their father in Italy.

The aunt said the family had been forced into "desperate measures" in a bid to keep the children in Australia.

The mother was informed at 11am she would have to hand over her children to the Department of Communities at 3pm, 32 hours ahead of their original deadline.

"They told me they had brought it forward because of all the media attention," she said.

The mother was initially advised by her Brisbane lawyer she could refuse to hand the children over.

This changed when she received a phone call from her lawyer saying the Department of Communities had obtained a warrant.

The mother said she was told the "full force of the police is now looking for my children".

It was understood late last night the children were still missing, but were now in the care of their great-grandmother, Caryl Highton.

Mr Somlyay said the move would be unlikely to prevent the father - who is understood to be in Australia - from taking the children back to Italy with him.

"It is hard to fight the court decision at this stage," he said.

A catholic priest has called for the overhaul of the Family Court system so children get to have a fair say.

Father Joe Duffy of Maroochydore's Stella Maris Parish said if the court had listened to the four children at the centre of an international custody dispute, they would not be forced to return to Italy.

Two of the children attend Stella Maris Catholic School.

Father Duffy searched online and found the Family Court judgement which dismissed the mother's appeal for the children to stay in Australia.

Topics:  alex somlyay child custody deportation italy julia gillard police warrant



How to survive a bushfire in your car

IT SOUNDS like a nightmare, but it can happen.

Eight reasons to join the RFS

SPREAD across 93% of Queensland, the Rural Fire Service has about 36,000 volunteers. And you could be one of them.

What if my insurer gives me grief?

CLAIMING your insurance cover after a natural disaster can go one of two ways. It can be a breeze, or like pulling teeth.

Man hospitalised after air conditioning leak

Ambulance generic

Man taken to hospital after exposure to leaked refrigerant

Warwick rider eyes off new event after riding injury

Jackson, Halle-Belle, Jody and Peel Tribe as Peel recovers from an injury at the Warwick Rodeo.

Rodeo rider making good recovery from Warwick injury

WATCH: Cricketers pitch in in fight against violence

TAKING A STAND: Sponsor Adam Colrain and Warwick Zonta president Jacinta Fromm visiting Slade Park where the Warwick Redbacks played in specially made team shirts to support Zonta's message against domestic violence.

Warwick Rosewool Redbacks taking a stand

Local Partners

15 things to do on the Southern Downs this weekend

If you're looking for something to do this weekend, here's some awesome ideas


Warwick Little Athletics to hold fund-raising day

Bree Ragh in high jump at the Warwick Little Athletics Centre.

Walkathon planned for little athletics

Kernaghan's a 'boy from the bush' with a timeless quality

Country music singer Lee Kernaghan.

Lee Kernaghan is celebrating the 25th year of his breakthrough song.

Don't miss the free Bunnings Christmas party

Free Bunnings Christmas Family Night

WARWICK'S Bunnings Warehouse will come alive tonight for Xmas

EXCLUSIVE: Meet Robert Irwin, wildlife photographer

SNAPPER: Apart from wildlife, photography is Robert Irwin's great passion.

Steve's boy has a passion for photography

Louis Tomlinson's tribute to late mother

Louis Tomlinson's new single is a tribute to his late mother.

Justin Timberlake stuns students with secret class

Justin Timberlake stunned high school students in Sydney

Carrie Fisher says Ford will be bugged by affair confession

Carrie Fisher is sure Harrison Ford is annoyed at her

Dakota Fanning rekindles romance with childhood sweetheart

Dakota Fanning rekindles romance with ex

Jennifer Lawrence apologises to the people of Hawaii

Jennifer Lawrence sorry for 'offensive' story

Essential to get new Maroochydore CBD fundamentals right

LOOKING AHEAD: The central business district at Maroochydore is planned to be the heart of the Sunshine Coast.

SunCentral reports good progress on 53ha Sunshine Coast city heart

'Crucial' farm land eyed by defence department

Lawson Geddes moving the Brangus cattle to higher ground - which is the land the Defence Department is interested taking for the Shoalwater Bay expansion.

"You can't have one without the other.”

Former Shark Show for sale for $1.3 million

Vic Hislop at the old Shark Show.

TALK about a jaws-dropping real estate opportunity.

There's a whole lot of luxury in this home

The Endeavour Foundation's latest prize home in Mountain Creek.

WHEN it comes to desirable homes, it's hard to go past a prize home.

Ipswich City Properties asset portfolio retains its value

Ipswich City Council Administration Building, South Street, Ipswich. Photo: Claudia Baxter / The Queensland Times

New website launched by Ipswich City Council

Ready to SELL your property?

Post Your Ad Here!