A judge has dismissed an application for the father of two children who were kidnapped and taken to France by their mother to be held in contempt and jailed for violating court orders.
But B.C. Supreme Court Justice Nicole Garson has some concerns that Scott Grant “is not honouring at least the spirit” of a March order asking him to set up a webcam so the kids can communicate with Nathalie Gettliffe.
The mother was sentenced to six more months in jail late last year after she whisked the kids away to France in contempt of a court order.
She was returned to France and then released from custody early this year. Her lawyer, Vincent Pigeon, appeared in court yesterday asking that Grant be put in jail for seven days and fined a minimum of $1,000 for contempt. Pigeon told the judge that his client had been cut off from communicating with the kids for five months — a claim denied by Grant’s lawyer, Jane Reid.
“Mr. Grant has no lawful excuse for not setting up the webcam,” said Pigeon. “He’s intentionally, consciously and continuously breached this order.”
Reid told the judge that Grant was concerned that Gettliffe would take photos of the kids from the webcam and sell them and believed he was not in contempt since he allowed phone conversations to take place.
“He read that if the webcam could not be facilitated, communication could continue by phone.”
Reid said Grant has now bought a webcam and is prepared to install it as long as it won’t be misused.
The judge repeated the order for Grant to set up a webcam on his home computer but also said that the mother must not audio or videotape any of the webcam conversations. She said the children must not be punished for the fact that their mother was in contempt in removing them from Canada.
Grant, a Vancouver financial adviser, has had interim custody of the kids — a girl who is now 12 and a boy who is now 14 — since they were kidnapped in 2001.