(TAMPA, Fla.) — The two children allegedly kidnapped by their parents and taken to Cuba earlier this week emerged from their grandparents’ home in Florida Thursday morning smiling and striking poses for reporters, who they thought were there to learn about their Cuba “vacation.”
Cole and Chase Hakken, ages 4 and 2, respectively, were told by their maternal grandparents that photographers wanted to take their pictures after hearing about their “sailboat trip to another country and airplane trip back to America.”
The children answered no questions about their ordeal or their parents, who lost custody of the children last year and attempted to take them back illegally via the trip to Cuba, authorities say.
Instead, the boys smiled, showed off a toy truck, said the cameras were “cool,” and struck silly poses.
Meanwhile, their parents, Joshua Hakken, 35, and Sharyn Hakken, 34, were formally charged in court Thursday morning with kidnapping, interference with child custody, and neglect.
Joshua Hakken was also charged with grand theft auto, false imprisonment, battery and burglary.
The boys had been in the custody of grandparents Bob and Patricia Hauser when they were allegedly kidnapped by their parents April 3. They were then returned to the Hausers’ home Wednesday, after Cuban and U.S. officials brought the Hakken family home from Cuba and took Joshua and Sharyn into custody.
The grandparents said they were deeply grateful to local and federal authorities, the media and the public for helping to bring the boys home.
Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio
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