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Penal code Section 278.5: taking, enticing away, keeping, withholding, or concealing child in Order to Deprive Lawful Custodian of custody or visitation rights -- Punishment.

Penal Code Section 278.5(a): Every person who takes, entices away, keeps, withholds, or conceals a child and maliciously deprives a lawful custodian of a right to custody, or a person of aright to visitation, shall be punished by imprisonment in a county jail not exceeding one year, a fine not exceeding one thousands dollars ($1,00), or both that fine and imprisonment, or by imprisonment pursuant to subdivision (h) of Section 1170 for 16 months, or two or three years, a fine not exceeding ten thousand dollars ($10.000), or both that fine and imprisonment.

(b) Nothing contained in this section limits the court's contempt power.

(c) A custody order obtained after the taking, enticing away, keeping, withholding, or concealing of a child does not constitute a defense to a crime charged under this section.

Divorce, separation, and custody battles have led to many charges over the years for many families.  This occurs for a multitude of reasons, some being hostility toward an ex, other times a parent may legitimately fear for the safety of the child while the child is with the other parent.  Sometimes these accusations are founded n fact, other times they are factually incorrect allegations made for a separate reason, or with a separate goal in mind. Also See: PC 278 Stealing

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