Abduction charges against Yavelow on inactive docket; Author and composer forbidden to contact ex-wife or children


A Baltimore County judge yesterday tentatively dismissed child abduction charges against a classically trained composer who became the focus of an FBI manhunt when he fled Europe with his two daughters last year.

The charge against Christopher Yavelow, 49, who was raised in Baltimore County and is the author of six books, was placed on an inactive or "stet" docket by Circuit Judge James T. Smith Jr.

Howard B. Merker, the deputy state's attorney who requested the move, said it means that he will not prosecute Yavelow as long as the defendant has no unlawful contact with his estranged wife, Monique Fasel, and their two children, Celina Yavelow, 13, and Stephanie Yavelow, 10.

The charges could have brought a jail sentence of up to 30 days.

The children were returned to their mother in the Netherlands after Yavelow's arrest last fall in Houston, and Merker said that the state's main objective in the case was their safe return.

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