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LA teen surfing Internet finds his picture on Canadian missing children website

Canadian Press, Various CANWEST newspapers across Canada, National Post, LINDA MASSARELLA February 17, 2004

LOS ANGELES (AP) - Authorities have arrested the mother of a 17-year-old boy who saw his picture on a missing children's website and discovered that he had allegedly been abducted from Canada 14 years ago.

Acting on a Canadian warrant, U.S. Marshalls arrested Giselle-Marie Goudreault, 45, at her home in the San Fernando Valley. She is being held without bail until Canadian authorities can extradite her on child abduction charges, authorities said. It wasn't immediately known when an extradition hearing would be held.

Goudreault, who works in administrative support services for the Los Angeles Unified School District "was shocked and very emotional" during Wednesday's arrest, said Jimell Griffin, a deputy U.S. Marshall in Los Angeles.

The teen, whose identity was not released by authorities, was immediately put in a foster home by the Department of Children and Family Services. A message left with the agency was not returned Tuesday.

The boy spotted his own photo, taken when he was three, on a Canadian missing children's website a few months ago and told a teacher about it, authorities said. The teacher contacted Los Angeles police, who confirmed the story with the Royal Canadian Mounted Police in Red Deer, Alta., authorities said.

The child had been living with his father in Red Deer. The father had custody but after one court-ordered weekend visit, the mother never returned him, Griffin said.

Authorities believe Goudreault initially took her son to live in Mexico, then moved to the Los Angeles area in 1995. She remarried twice.

"They were taking her child away and she did what she had to do," Melissa Goudreault, her sister-in-law, said in a telephone interview with The Associated Press on Tuesday from her Red Deer home.

"The family is behind her and is trying to raise money for her legal defence," she said.

The boy's father, however, doesn't see it that way.

"I just think about him," the 43-year-old man told the Edmonton Sun. "A conversation with him is a long time overdue. It would be a relief to ask him if he's OK."

Griffin said although it was Goudreault's son who initiated contact with authorities, the youth was "upset" at his mother's arrest and made moves to comfort her while she was being led away.

Authorities here said the father has asked child services to release the teen to him.

The Canadian Press 2004

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