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December 6, 2011 at 2:43 PM

Missing boy's father to regain custody of daughter

A judge today lifted the protection order against Solomon Metalwala, father of missing a 2-year-old boy, clearing the way for him to regain custody of his 4-year-old daughter.

Maile Metalwala has been in state foster care since Nov. 6, when her brother, Sky Metalwala , was reported missing by their mother, Julia Biryukova. An extensive search has turned up no sign of the boy.

During a dependency hearing Monday, Commissioner Richard Gallaher granted Solomon Metalwala’s request that Maile be allowed to live with him at his mother’s Kirkland home provided the protection order was lifted or modified.

Solomon Metalwala and Biryukova have been fighting for custody of their children during a year-long divorce battle. The protection order was filed against Solomon Metalwala in March, according to his attorney, Leslie Clay Terry III.

Biryukova, 30, told police she was driving Sky to Overlake Hospital Medical Center on Nov. 6 because the boy was sick. She said the car ran out of gas in Bellevue, so she left the sleeping toddler in the unlocked car and walked with her daughter to a gas station.

When she returned, Sky was gone, she said.

But an examination of the car revealed there was still gas in the tank and no obvious mechanical problems, according to Bellevue police.

Police also questioned why Biryukova would leave Sky in the car, especially after she was cited along with her husband for leaving the boy in a car for nearly an hour in a store parking lot in 2009.

Comments | More in The Blotter | Topics: Bellevue, missing person, Redmond

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