BURBANK (CBSLA.com) — Authorities Friday announced the arrest of a mother who had allegedly abducted her daughter in 2005 and fled to Mexico.
Burbank police Sgt. Darin Ryburn said Gabriela Barrett was arrested Wednesday while returning to the country.
The 53-year-old woman allegedly admitted to fleeing, reportedly telling authorities she was trying to protect the child from the child’s father whom she alleged was verbally abusive.
The arrest was made with assistance from U.S. Customs and Border Protection personnel.
“At the time of the incident, police determined the mother and daughter were somewhere near Tijuana, Mexico, but were unable to locate the pair, even with the help of Mexican law enforcement authorities,” Ryburn said, adding that Burbank Police Detective Dave Kleinfeld never gave up searching for the child.
According to Ryburn, the detective recently located an adult son of Barrett and through her son, started communicating with Barrett.
“Detective Kleinfeld made arrangements with United States Customs and Border Protection for Gabriela to surrender at the border crossing,” Ryburn said.
Barrett was taken into custody and booked on suspicion of maliciously concealing a child from a lawful custodian. She is being held on $40,000 bail.
The child, now 11, was interviewed by officials from the Department of Child and Family Services and released to a family member, Ryburn said.
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