Suburban Man Indicted for International Parental Kidnapping
CHICAGO—A Skokie man was indicted last week for international parental kidnapping of his three children and traveling with them to Turkey without their mother’s consent, permission or knowledge. MURTAZA ALI, 44, of Skokie, was charged with one count of international parental kidnapping by a federal grand jury. Ali was arrested on May 6 upon his return to O’Hare International Airport with the children, and remains in federal custody. Ali is scheduled to be arraigned Tuesday, June 2 at 10:00, in front of U.S. District Judge Samuel Der-Yeghiayan.
According to the court documents, Ali is a Pakistani-national, and with individual A, has three minor children. According to Individual A, on the evening of May 2, 2015, she was at a social gathering. Ali, along with the three children, was scheduled to pick her up after the event. He did not pick her up, and when she arrived home, Ali and the three children were not home, the house was a mess, and the passports and luggage were missing. An investigation by Skokie Police Department determined Ali’s last known location was believed to be near O’Hare Airport.
Ali, along with the three children, boarded a Turkish Airlines flight at O’Hare Airport and arrived in Istanbul, Turkey on May 2. According to Individual A, Ali called her from Turkey and stated that he had the three children and that he was traveling to Pakistan. According to information obtained from Turkish Airlines and other law enforcement agents, there was reason to believe that Ali was planning to board a flight from Turkey bound for Karachi, Pakistan, with the children. He was arrested on a federal complaint when he and his three children returned to the United States on May 6.
The arrest and indictment were announced by Zachary T. Fardon, United States Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois; Robert J. Holley, Special Agent-in-Charge of the Chicago Office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation; and William A. Ferrara, Chicago Director of Field Operations, Customs and Border Protection. Skokie Police Department assisted in the investigation.
The government is being represented by Assistant U.S. Attorney Heather McShain.
International parental kidnapping carries a maximum sentence of three years in prison and a $250,000 fine. If convicted, the Court must impose a reasonable sentence under federal sentencing statutes and the advisory United States Sentencing Guidelines.
The public is reminded that an indictment contains only charges and is not evidence of guilt. The defendant is presumed innocent and is entitled to a fair trial at which the government has the burden of proving guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.