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Dutch teenage sailor in legal battle over her care

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Dutch teenage sailor in legal battle over her care


The Dutch teenage sailor who went missing after her voyage round the world was blocked by the courts has returned from the Caribbean amid a legal battle over her care.

14-year-old Laura Dekker normally lives with her father but child welfare authorities have asked a Dutch court to remove her.

Dekker is said to have run away because she was depressed and under pressure both at school and from the media.

Peter De Lange, the lawyer representing Laura Dekker told reporters that she went to Paris and took a plane without parental authorisation but was not challenged by anyone. “ You can board in Paris without any problem with guitar, with a bag and so on and her New Zealand passport….She couldn’t manage anymore, all these requests from the organisations and institutions .. she was not herself.”

Dekker’s lawyer is trying to delay the case by contesting the independence of the judges considering her welfare. They are the same ones who ruled against her sailing trip.

Dekker’s plans at such a young age to sail into the record books sparked international interest but after a court barred her trip she was placed under state supervision.

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