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What do you do when your children are taken away by your ex-partner? Who do you call for help? And how do you get them back?

Why this story?

Last September Ana’s ex-husband took her two sons on holiday for a week, and didn’t come home. He told her they were going to Spain – he even showed her the tickets and proof of the hotel. But they never went to Spain. Instead, he took the boys to California, switched off his phone, stopped using his bank cards, and went to ground. In doing so he triggered an international manhunt.

‘Snatched’ is about Ana’s quest to find him, and bring her children home. It follows her on a Kafka-esque journey through the family courts, and a maze of international authorities, all the way to a court in Orange County.

How we got here

Louise Tickle found out about Ana’s story just a few weeks after her children were taken and has been following it live as it unfolds.

She’s tracked the investigation day by day, discovering the fiendishly complicated terrain of court orders, and international treaties, and huge sums of money that you step into when a family member takes your children; capturing the daily moments of hope, frustration and anguish across a five month ordeal.