NORTHRIDGE (CBSLA.com) — The family of a Northridge man feared for his safety Wednesday night.
In January, Dustin Kent went looking for his 5-year-old daughter Adrianna who lives in Peru with her mother. Soon after locating the little girl, Kent was arrested by Peruvian police on kidnapping charges.
The case has created a media frenzy in Peru, where the 32-year-old father could spend the next several decades behind bars.
On Wednesday night, CBS2’s Peter Daut spoke to Kent’s family.
“It’s ludicrous! it’s beyond unimaginable,” Dustin’s father, Bill, said. “It should not be kidnapping, it’s a custody thing. What parent wouldn’t want to find their own child?”
Kent’s father is desperate for his son’s release. His son and Adrianna’s mother, Rose, married in 2007, but they divorced several years later.
After a judge granted the parents shared custody of Adrianna, Rose fled to her native home in Peru with their daughter. This prompted a judge to grant Kent complete custody.
A full year has passed. Kent still does not have Adrianna in his custody. His father says the little girl was kept in hiding.
“He was miserable without her, he had a very miserable year. He was tired of the waiting games, he was tired of the political process of waiting,” Bill explained.
Kent is a registered nurse at a hospital in Hollywood. His family has hired an attorney, but they feel frustrated by the lack of support from U.S. authorities in getting him out of prison. They’re also worried for his safety.
“I’m afraid if he stays in Peru very long, he may not have a long life,” Bill said.
Kent has created a GoFundMe page to help with the legal costs.
The family is also trying to raise awareness on social media with the hashtag #freedustinkentperu.