A CITY man battling to have his children returned to Britain has slammed the Government for allowing ‘abductors to laugh in the face of the law’.
Ken Spooner had hoped his two boys, Devlan, six, and four-year-old Caelan, would finally be returning to Milton Keynes after the Zambian Supreme Court granted him custody of the children.
But the boys mother Zanetta Nyendwa – who took them on a family holiday to the African country almost three years ago – managed to obtain a stay on the ruling pending an appeal.
That means Mr Spooner has been forced to return home to raise money for his legal fees. He has already spent thousands of pounds fighting the case and travelling to Zambia – all without any assistance from the British Government.
The Foreign Office insists it cannot interfere in the affairs of a sovereign state, despite the fact the children are Wards of the English Court.
Milton Keynes Citizen launched its Justice for Ken campaign to ask the Government to help, but there has been no reply to a petition backed by hundreds of readers and handed into Parliament by MP Mark Lancaster.
And a meeting between parliamentary under secretary responsible for Africa, Henry Bellingham and Mr Spooner also seems to have drawn a blank.
“Henry Bellingham made promises to write to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Zambia and speak to the High Commission – but nothing has come of it,” Mr Spooner said.
“He was all hot air. If he was not going to do anything then why bother with the meeting?
“I would like to see Government bring through some sort of legislation on international child abduction. It would be good if something could be put in place so that left behind parents get some financial help. I have colossal legal fees that need to be addressed and no choice but to meet them myself.
“The Government need to start getting involved in the whole issue of child abduction. There needs to be reciprocal agreements.
“I’m not saying my situation is more important than other things the Government have to tackle, but it is important to me and my children and as long as it continues other would be abductors continue to laugh in the face of the law.”
A spokesman for the Foreign Office said: “We are providing consular assistance to Mr Spooner and continue to monitor his case closely. British High Commission staff in Zambia remain in contact with him.”