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Longtime Texas parental kidnap fugitive arrested in Medina

MEDINA – A 58-year-old Texas man who had been sought by federal and state authorities for almost 23 years for abducting his 13-month-old son was arrested Friday in Medina, according to Christopher Combs, special agent in charge of the San Antonio, Texas, FBI Bureau and Chief Tom Dickson of the Lorena, Texas,Police Department.

The suspect, Daniel Lee Kestel, was caught with the assistance of the Orleans County Sheriff’s Office and arraigned in Orleans County Court in Albion. He is being held there pending extradition proceedings linked to his return to Texas.

According to the FBI Kestel was charged by Texas authorities with Interference with Child Custody, after he took his son from the boy’s mother early on June 21, 1992 and never returned the child. After the matter was referred to the FBI, Kestel became the subject of a federal arrest warrant charging him with unlawful flight to avoid prosecution. According to Combs the FBI and Lorena police have been working with the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children and law enforcement agencies across the nation to track down Kestel.

Sources said Kestel had relatives in the Medina area.

FBI officials would not comment on what happened to the boy Kestel is accused of abducting, who would now be 24 years old.