Cuba to hand over Fla. couple accused of kidnapping 2 sons

Investigators say Joshua Michael Hakken tied up mother-in-law, fled with kids

 UPDATED 11:26 AM HST Apr 09, 2013
HAVANA -

Cuba says it will turn over a Florida couple accused of kidnapping their own children from the mother's parents and fleeing to Havana.

Foreign Ministry official Johana Tablada told The Associated Press in a written statement that Cuba had informed U.S. authorities of the country's decision to turn over Joshua Michael Hakken, his wife, Sharyn, and their two young boys. She did not say when the handover would occur.

The Hakkens were spotted alongside their boat, Salty, docked at Havana's Hemingway Marina. Joshua told reporters to stay away, but the family appeared to be interacting normally with each other.

Investigators said Joshua entered his mother-in-law's house north of Tampa early Wednesday, tied her up and fled with his young sons.

Authorities had been searching by air and sea for the boat Hakken recently bought. The truck the family had been traveling in was found late Thursday, abandoned in a parking garage in Madeira Beach.

The boys had been living with their maternal grandparents, who were granted permanent custody Tuesday, since last year.

Authorities have previously characterized the Hakkens as "anti-government."

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