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Accused parental kidnapper returned to Idaho

| November 30, 2023 9:34 PM

A Sandpoint woman wanted on charges second-degree kidnapping is back in the country after a team of deputy U.S. Marshals arrived at the Spokane International Airport late Thursday with her in custody.

Laurel E. Hannah, 40, who did not have custody of her 1-year-old child, allegedly took the youth and fled to Costa Rica in late summer. An arrest warrant was issued in mid-August for Hannah on a charge of custodial interference and she was later charged with second-degree kidnapping by the Bonner County Prosecutor’s Office.

“Thank you to all the agencies coming together on this case, especially since there was a child involved," Sandpoint Police Corey Coon said.

Sandpoint Police quickly learned Hannah had likely fled the country. Due to fears the child was in danger, the U.S. Marshals Service's Greater Idaho Fugitive Task Force in Coeur d’Alene joined the investigation to locate Hannah while the Sandpoint Police continued to investigate the crime of custodial interference and kidnapping, according to a U.S. Marshals Service press release. The USMS task force worked non-stop to exhaust all investigative leads to locate Hannah and the missing child.

On Aug. 23 Costa Rican authorities apprehended Hannah at the request of the United States and safely recovered the child. The USMS then worked with the U.S. Department of Justice’s Office of International Affairs to secure the extradition of Hannah from Costa Rica back to Idaho.

This case highlights the critical collaboration between local, state, and federal law enforcement agencies working together successfully towards a common goal. All the law enforcement partners are relieved the child in this case was safely returned to North Idaho. The United States Marshal for the District of Idaho, Brent Bunn, is appreciative of all the investigators from the Sandpoint Police Department, Bonner County Sheriff’s Office, Bonner County Prosecutor’s Office, U.S. State Department, FBI, and USMS Office of International Operations.

We are pleased we were able to assist the Sandpoint Police Department and the Bonner County Sheriff’s Office in the return of a suspect from Costa Rica," U.S. Marshal Bunn said. We appreciate the great working relationship we have with the law enforcement community in North Idaho.”

The USMS Greater Idaho Fugitive Task Force is a state-wide cooperative to locate and arrest violent state and federal fugitives. Member agencies throughout the state of Idaho include: Idaho State Police, Idaho Department of Corrections, Coeur d’Alene Police Department, Kootenai County Sheriff’s Office, Nampa Police Department, Pocatello Police Department, Post Falls Police Department, and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

Anyone with information on wanted fugitives is urged to contact the nearest U.S. Marshals office, the U.S. Marshals Service Communication Center at 1-800-336-0102, or USMS Tips at www.usmarshals.gov/tips.

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