International Child Custody trial begins in Nashville

A trial determining the fate of two 13-year-old twin boys from Eastern Europe was to begin in Nashville on Tuesday.

The trial will not determine whether the boys should stay in Tennessee with their father or live in Eastern Europe with their mother. Rather the court case is to determine which country gets to decide the custody dispute: the United States, Hungary or possibly Romania.

The boys are American citizens who were born in Texas but they have spent the majority of their lives in Hungary. The father in this case is an American with a family in the Cottontown community of Sumner County. Their mother is a Romanian national who has invoked an international treaty alleging the children are being wrongfully retained in Tennessee by their father.

The twins visited Tennessee last summer to visit their paternal grandparents. The father, who was supposed to return the boys to Europe, instead filed for divorce and kept the children.

Whether the mother allowed for the boys to stay in the U.S. and enroll in classes will play a role in the divorce proceedings and custody dispute. She has sought help from the U.S. State Department to get the boys returned to Europe.

The spouses, Oana Olson and Oliver Olson were married in Romania in 1996, court records show. Their children Spencer and Luca were born in Texas three years later. The family moved to Hungary in 2004 so Oana could attend dental school. The family stayed there until 2012.

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