23 Dec 2009

Teen sailor may be removed from father's care

11:00 pm on 23 December 2009

Child welfare agencies are to ask a Dutch court to remove teenage sailor Laura Dekker from her father's care after she went missing last week.

Dekker, 14, was found on the island of Sint Maarten in the Dutch Antilles and has now returned to the Netherlands.

It is still unclear how Miss Dekker managed to reach the island, off the coast of Venezuela, and whether anyone helped her.

In October, welfare agencies thwarted her attempt to try to become the youngest person to sail solo around the world. The BBC reports she has been under state supervision since then.

Ms Dekker was born on her parents' yacht off the New Zealand coast and at one point considered claiming NZ citizenship to thwart the Dutch authorities' attempts to stop her world record bid.