A Lewiston mother has been reunited with the daughter she had not seen since the girl allegedly was kidnapped and taken to Iran two years ago.
Sheri Jalalian traveled last week to the Middle East to pick up Miranda, 8. They returned to Lewiston late Wednesday, 2nd District Judge Ron Schilling said.Jalalian's husband, Mashalah S. Jalalian, 35, had been in the Nez Perce County Jail without bond since Feb. 2 on a contempt of court charge. It was filed after he failed to return Miranda to her mother as ordered by Magistrate William Stellmon last year.
Mashalah Jalalian also has been charged with second-degree kidnapping. Bail was set at $100,000 on that count, but Schilling released him from jail on his own recognizance Thursday. He was ordered to have no contact with his daughter without his wife present.
Sheri Jalalian told Lewiston police her husband left the United States on May 12, 1990, with then-6-year-old Miranda for a two-week vacation in Iran. She said that was the last she saw of her daughter.
Mashalah Jalalian then returned to the United States and claimed he could not get the child out of Iran, Sheri Jalalian told police.
The child reportedly was living with her grandparents in Iran. Sheri Jalalian said she had been afraid to go to Iran and get Miranda because she could be held there against her will. By marrying Mashalah Jalalian, she received Iranian citizenship.
She filed for divorce in January 1991 and the court granted her temporary custody of Mir-anda pending the divorce. Mashalah Jalalian was ordered to return their daughter to Lewiston no later than Nov. 23, 1991, but he failed to comply.
A preliminary hearing is scheduled March 25 on the kidnapping charge.