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Montana man arrested for international parental kidnapping

Russell Smith Courthouse
Posted at 4:45 PM, Aug 18, 2022
and last updated 2022-08-18 18:45:04-04

A Thompson Falls man wanted for International Parental kidnapping has been arrested in Costa Rica.

In a press release from the FBI, officials say Jacob Strong was located earlier this summer in Costa Rica and arrested on a United States District Court for the District of Montana Unlawful Flight to Avoid Prosecution warrant issued on September 24, 2021.

Strong’s 4-year-old son was also safely located and has since been reunited with his mother.

On June 14, 2022, Strong was transported by Costa Rican immigration officials to Miami where he was taken into custody by agents from the FBI Miami Field Office.

Strong and his mother, Candace Bright, have been indicted in the United States District Court for the District of Montana Missoula Division on two counts of Conspiracy to Commit International Parental Kidnapping and False Statements.

Bright, who lives in Andrews, Texas, was arraigned on June 28, 2022, appearing via camera from the George H.W. Bush And George W. Bush United States Court House And George Mahon Federal Building in Midland, Texas.

Strong was transported back to Montana and is scheduled to be arraigned in Missoula on Friday, August 19, 2022 at 9:30am.

On August 19, 2021, the Sanders County Sheriff's Office conducted a welfare check on Jacob Strong and his son, Harrison Sterling Strong, following Strong's failure to meet the child's mother for a custodial exchange in Thompson Falls. Neither Jacob nor Harrison Strong were located at the time.

On September 7, 2021, Strong was formally charged in Sanders County District Court, Thompson Falls with the crime of Parental Interference.

On September 24, 2021, Strong was charged federally in the United States District Court, District of Montana with Unlawful Flight to Avoid Prosecution and a federal arrest warrant was issued.

Numerous law enforcement and partner agencies were involved in this investigation including the United States Attorney’s Office, District of Montana, Montana Department of Justice, FBI El Paso, FBI Legal Attache Panama City, FBI Seattle, Sanders County Prosecutors Office, Sanders County Sheriff’s Office, and FBI Miami.

The FBI would also like to thank the public for their tips.