UPDATE, JANUARY 30, 2013: The judge’s written decision, issued on January 29, gives two reasons for the denial of recognition: the children’s Russian citizenship and unspecified conflicts with Russian law.
Neither of these impediments were present in the previous rulings of the same judge, when he issued a decision in January 2012 stating that interim Italian decrees could not be recognized in Russia, only the court’s final decision, and that the award of “sole custody” to the father is not legally recognizable. Both of these issues were addressed with the final judgment of the Italian court, rendered in September 2012, but the judge does not appear to follow his own, earlier decision of January 2012.
The essence of this ruling is essentially that foreign decisions cannot be enforced in Russia even when the Russian party voluntarily submits to the jurisdiction of the foreign court and continues to participate in the foreign proceedings even after initiating identical claims against the same party in Russia.
The Russian court today in St. Petersburg denied the request for recognition of the final Italian judgment, refusing to apply the international convention the country signed with Italy for the enforcement of civil judgments. No reasons were given yet.
Previously, an interim Italian decree awarding custody of the children to the father was issued prior to the abduction of the children by Marianne Grin. Grin illegally abducted the children to Russia, as well as violating an Italian court order prohibiting the children from leaving the country without the consent of both parents.
After abducting the children to Russia, Grin continued to press her case for custody in the Italian courts, which makes today’s decision even more difficult to understand. In violating basic notions of due process, the decision essentially gives Grin the right to choose which court decision she prefers.
We are waiting for more information about the judge’s decision.
In a separate case before a different judge that Grin has filed in St. Petersburg against her ex-husband, with the same requests she made in Italy, the court has now ordered a psychological and psychiatric examination of the entire family. Grin has opposed any such examination in Russia of her or the children.