When a child is being wrongfully withheld or concealed from a person with a right of custody, the District Attorney’s Child Abduction and Recovery Unit seeks to act on behalf of the court to assist in the enforcement of custody and visitation orders. The District Attorney’s Office does not represent either parent or party and is not a substitute for private counsel.
Wrongfully concealing or withholding a child from someone with a right to custody or visitation can be a felony; however in most cases, the Child Recovery Unit will attempt to facilitate voluntary compliance with court orders, including the return of the child to the jurisdiction where the child was wrongfully removed from, regardless of where that may be. There are also specific provisions that apply to international cases.
To obtain more information, please visit the California Superior Court’s Family Law Self-Help Center website at: https://www.ventura.courts.ca.gov/self-help.html. Additional information regarding custody and visitation issues can be found here: https://www.courts.ca.gov/selfhelp-custody.htm.
For more information and assistance from the District Attorney’s Child Recovery Unit by telephone, please call (805) 662-1755. If a child is missing or believed to have been abducted by a stranger, immediately call 911.