A 22-year-old man who assisted in the abduction of an 18-month-old girl from foster care has been sentenced to two years in jail by the ACT Supreme Court.

The girl was abducted during a supervised visit by the child’s mother in August last year. The Canberra man went into the Barnardos care house carrying a knife and toy gun.  He then instructed the Barnados care worker to lay on the ground and count to 100.

The man previously told the court he feared the baby’s mother would leave him and that drove him to be involved in the abduction.  The court heard that the pair had been planning to abduct the child for some time and that the man himself was on route to the Police station to turn himself in when he was arrested the next day.

He entered a plea of guilty to entering entering the foster home where the girl was living, and taking her from staff at knifepoint.

During sentencing, Justice Burns told the man “I accept that you committed these offences because you feared the co-accused would leave you.  I accept your co-accused instigated it,” he said.

He also told the man he believed he had only sought to reunite the child with her mother and did not intend any harm to any party involved.

“You are an immature and insecure young man,” Justice Burns said.

He was sentenced to a total of two years jail, for aggravated burglary and unlawfully taking a child.

A non-parole period of one year was set.  The man will be eligible for parole in August.

Image source: Shutterstock

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  • A complex scenario no doubt. Ultimately the child’s safety and welbeing is the most important thing.


  • Oh dear, the lengths some people will go to because they fear being alone. How sad. Bottom line is, this child was taken from get mother for a reason, when the mother gets her act together, she might get her child back. Abduction definitely wasn’t the solution


  • He may not have had any intention of harming any one but I am not to sure the poor staff would have know this.


  • There had to be a serious problem for the baby to be removed to foster care. If the courts agree normally only supervised visits are allowed, sometimes only when a welfare officer is present. Then supervised visits may be allowed in the presence of the foster parents. I know of a case in SA


  • Very difficult. I understand that he wasn’t happy with how things were, that he was worried.. but indeed he should have thought about the all thing a little better!


  • Lke he


  • It must be hard not having your child in your care but this is certainly not the way to change it… did they not think that this could ruin their chances of even having access visits…?


  • Such a sad situation. Poor baby

    • Yeah indeed. It’s the baby who will suffer the most out of all this.


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