Boy flies home from Florida as married lover stays in jail

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The Independent Online
A schoolboy who ran away to America with a 33-year-old woman returned home last night to be reunited with his family. Sean Kinsella, 14, who went to Florida with Tracey Whalin, the mother of his best friend, will be interviewed by police in the next few days.

Meanwhile, Mrs Whalin, from Bilborough, Nottinghamshire, remained in solitary confinement in a pre- trial detention centre in Florida, facing a potential prison sentence of up to 20 years. Lieutenant Manuel Cuervo, one of the officers at the detention centre, said Mrs Whalin was in isolation for her own protection.

"Anyone who is charged with a crime such as she is charged with is given solitary confinement to protect them from the general population, who sometimes have a code among themselves," he said.

The pair disappeared 13 days ago and were eventually found sharing a holiday apartment in Plantation Key, Florida.

Neighbours of Mrs Whalin have said that her fear of cancer may have driven her to run off with Sean.

The mother-of-three is reported to have confided in friends that she needed treatment for "abnormal cells" after a routine smear test three months ago.

Mrs Whalin appeared in court last Thursday charged with abduction and sex with a minor, while Sean was taken into care after being interviewed by local police.

As police arrived in Florida to escort the teenager home, he said the relationship was over and he did not want to see her again.

He is reported to have told other teenagers at the children's home where he was held until he could be brought home, said: `I don't want anything more to do with her."

A 16-year-old resident of the home said: "He's heartbroken because he was in love with her. He cries quite a lot. He said they had been making love all the time."

Nottinghamshire police officers will see US prosecutors today to discuss the charges against Mrs Whalin. It is thought they may press for her to be tried in Britain, although the Florida authorities are expected to resist such a move. She is due to appear in court again on 12 August.

A Nottinghamshire Police spokesman said: "Our officers will speak with local police and prosecutors. If they agree to return Mrs Whalin to this country she will be interviewed, and one of the charges she may face is abduction.

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