I am terrified and scared, please, please help me: Emotional plea to David Cameron from boy, 13, abducted by family in Qatar
British schoolboy Adam Jones has been separated from his family in Britain after his muslim uncle from Qatar allegedly kidnapped him in 2009.
The 13-year-old has yet to be freed despite attempts from his mother and the British Prime Minister, who responded to a recent letter from Adam where the boy asked David Cameron if he had forgotten about him.
The teenager was taken from his mother Rebecca when the family visited relatives of Adam’s deceased father in Qatari capital of Doha.
Adam claims to be under virtual house arrest and says he has been kicked by his relatives.
After seeing no results of their exchange last year Adam sent another letter in April this year asking if David Cameron had forgotten about him.
This time David Cameron replied that he has taken Adam’s plight further and spoken to the Qatari royal family and his Qatari counterpart Sheik Hamad bin Jassim bin Jabr al-Thani and demanded that Adam’s case be ‘speedily resolved’.
In a handwritten add the Prime Minister said: ‘I promise I have not forgotten about you – and I will keep trying to make some progress.’
His mother Rebecca Jones say Adam lives like a captive in the house of his uncle Fahad Juma Abdullah Al-Mudhaki, a police officer.
Every day that Adam has to spend in captivity is another day of childhood that has been stolen from him,’ 45-year-old Rebecca, from Sheffield told MailOnline at the time of Adam’s last plea to the PM.
‘It rips my heart out to see my son suffering when I cannot protect him. Every mother’s instinct is to protect their child and it is agony not to be able to do that.’
The youngster is now at the centre of an extraordinary battle between Rebecca and the Al-Mudhaki family who have told Rebecca to ‘forget you have a son’.
The case is in the hands of the Foreign Office’s child abduction section — but Adam’s plight is undoubtedly a stark reminder of the terrible complexities that can arise from the marriages of British citizens and foreign nationals.
Rebecca met Adam’s father Jamal Al-Mudhaki in 1994 when she was living and working in Bahrain as a human resources consultant.
They split in 1998, but when she discovered she was pregnant she married Jamal at an Islamic ceremony in Bahrain, knowing that as an unmarried mother she risked losing her job.
The couple never lived together and Jamal did not see his son, who has dual British and Qatari citizenship, until three months after his birth in 1999.
They were divorced according to normal Islamic practice, without any formal hearing or documentation, and Jamal made no application or request for custody of Adam.
Both remarried — Rebecca to IT consultant Barrie Jones in 2003, with whom she had a daughter Alex, now six — and initially she and Jamal had a civilised agreement.
Then, in 2005, when Adam was five, tragedy struck. Jamal was killed in a motorbike crash in Qatar. But even after his death Rebecca resolved to keep in contact with the Al-Mudhakis. A
nd so in October 2009, she took Adam to Qatar at the start of what was intended as a three-day visit.
‘At first everything was fine,’ she recalls. ‘We all had tea together and made small talk. They said they considered me to be a sister and were very welcoming.’
The subject of Adam’s inheritance from his dead father, which had cropped up before but had never seemed to Rebecca to be a major problem, was raised. In hindsight, Rebecca believes that since the day Jamal died, his family’s sole concern has been Adam’s claim on his father’s estate Rebecca estimates is worth around £1million.
On the final day of the trip, Adam’s uncle, Fahad, took Rebecca to an office in Doha where he claimed officials would help sort out the legal paperwork in connection with Adam’s inheritance.
Rebecca reluctantly signed the documents which were in Arabic saying in the 2011 interview that she had no reason to believe them to be lying.
In fact, the forms would later be used to support the Al-Mudhakis’ custody claim against her.
Within minutes of signing, Rebecca realised she had been tricked. ‘As soon as the papers were signed, Adam’s uncle Fahad told me: “Jamal didn’t take your son but I will.” ’
While she was at the office, Adam was taken away from his grandmother’s house and hidden with another relative. His mobile phone was confiscated.
Rebecca reported the kidnapping to the Qatari police but Al-Mudhaki’s colleagues simply told her that an initial court hearing had already been set for just ten days’ time to hear the Al-Mudhakis’ custody claim.
She suffered a constant campaign of intimidation: ‘I was followed whenever I went outside and received up to 20 phone calls a day from men claiming to be policemen, ordering me to report to various police stations for questioning.’
Fahad Al-Mudhakialso filed criminal accusations against her, claiming she had tried to change her son’s Muslim identity and of insulting a Qatari citizen — a charge that can carry a three-month jail sentence.
As a result, she was hauled into the public prosecutor’s office and interrogated for seven hours.
‘Obviously they were trying to make me give up my battle for Adam, but that was inconceivable,’ she says.
But when the judgment came at the end of November 2009, it was devastating. ‘It is not allowed for the child to stay with a non-Muslim when reaching this age,’ the court ruled with chilling finality. ‘Henceforth, her right of nurture shall be extinguished.’
Rebecca lodged a formal appeal against the court’s decision which was heard in February 2010.
This time, Adam was allowed to speak to the court pleading: ‘I want to live with my mother . . . I want to be with my Mum.’
But the court still ruled that he must remain in Qatar.
Rebecca said: ‘I have been terrorised and treated as a criminal. We are suffering every day without out little boy. The pain has not gotten easier as time has passed because I cannot accept what has happened.’