Judge tells kidnap couple to sort it out while 60 Minutes crew are still in limbo

There’s been an update overnight on the fate of four 60 Minutes crew members and Sally Faulkner – the judge

There’s been an update overnight on the fate of four 60 Minutes crew members and Sally Faulkner – the judge won’t budge until Ms Faulkner and his estranged husband reach a custody agreement of their children.

The saga all unfolded after Ms Faulkner, assisted by a child abduction agency and 60 Minutes, tried to take back her two children from their father.

The ABC has been told the judge in Lebanon is not viewing issue as kidnapping, but as mother wanting to reunite with her children.

Ms Faulkner was questioned by the judge in the presence of her estranged husband, Ali el-Amien, for a second time on Wednesday.

Her lawyer said the judge was pressuring the parents of the children to reach a custody agreement that could see her released soon.

This means there could also be good news for the 60 Minutes crew — reporter Tara Brown, producer Stephen Rice, cameraman Ben Williamson and sound recordist David Ballment — and the group who were detained with her last week.

Unfortunately this may mean Ms Faulkner has to concede her children will continue to live in Lebanon.

60 Minutes journalist Tara Brown spoke to News Corp and said, “Quite genuinely we are being treated well by the standards here, it’s fine, it’s not crowded”.

Yesterday, Sally Faulkner and the 60 Minutes team members were brought before Investigative Judge Rami Abdullah in handcuffs for questioning over the now infamous incident in Beirut last week.

The fate of the group lies in the judges hands, and over the next few days he will decide whether to uphold or dismiss the charges, or whether to grant bail.

Tell us, what do you make of this situation? Should it have happened at all? Do you feel for the mother?

  1. I think the mother was very lucky to get a reasonable judge who obviously understands that she wanted to be with her children. The father was the original kidnapper after all. The 60 Minutes Crew only has themselves to blame for getting caught in the middle of the schemozzle. The team who went in for the children are paid to do that and they would have known the risks.

    I do hope that the parents can sort it out and that the husband will ABIDE by the decision they come to. He has no right to keep his wife and their children apart.

  2. Denise Rosey  

    I wish Starts at 60 would proof read articles as many are marred by poor spelling and grammar. It isn’t “Ms F and HIS husband” for God’s sake.
    Developments with this case are more promising than earlier but husband sounds inflexible.

    • T Doulos  

      The issue is not spelling or grammar mistakes but the 2 children involved in this case.

  3. Peg Whalley  

    Because the father is a Moslem, the children belong to him. She should have realised that before marriage. She has no rights in Islam; she is only a woman. Poor children! Probably never see their mother again and will be raised Moslem.

  4. Lillian McRostie  

    He had no right to take the children out of the country without her consent. If she did consent then she was stupid to do so.

  5. For a start the Airport staff is partly responsible, they should ask for proof that the other parent is consenting to them being out of the country. She knew she was marrying Moslem, and should have realised that their women have no rights. If she did consent then she is paying the price for her stupidity.

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