Minnesota Man Seeks Son’s Return From Ukraine
MAPLE GROVE, Minn. (AP) – A Maple Grove man is at the center of a custody battle that’s left his 4-year-old son in an unsettled place, Ukraine.
Born in Minnesota, Maxim Vilenchik is U.S. citizen. So is his father. Andrew Vilenchik, who moved from Ukraine as a teen and gained his citizenship while serving in the Marines.
Reports say his ordeal began in 2011 when he traveled to Ukraine with his son and wife. She decided to remain there with their son. He won a court order last November for the boy’s return to America. But Ukrainian authorities stopped Vilenchik and his son at the airport.
Vilenchik has been trying since then to find U.S. officials willing to intervene. He says the unrest in Ukraine makes things more difficult – and more urgent.