A mother whose children were removed from her care in 2012 is launching a law suit against the Ministry of Justice and Security, the Salvation Army Youth Protection, and the youth protection service of Gelderland province, in the Netherlands.

The mother, Ms Jelena Antonova, alleges that her children were removed from her without any legal justification. She was accused of neglect by social workers, because she spoke Russian to her children instead of Dutch and allegedly tried to alienate the children from their father.

The mother’s case was heard in the Dutch Court of Appeal, which ordered that the children should be returned to her care, but the order was overturned by the Ministry of Justice and Security.

The child welfare proceedings were then highlighted in the European parliament in 2014, where MEPs were shown a video of the two children being taken away from their home, filmed by their brother Ilja Antonova.

Ms Antonova was eventually reunited permanently with her children, Nikolai and Anastasia Antonova, in 2014, after a judge ruled that the children should never have been removed from her care.

The hearing included a report from a family psychologist who said that Ms Antonova had not been guilty of neglect.

The mother was given permission during the hearing to question social workers involved with her children, which revealed several failings in the way the case was handled.

Ms Antonova and her family are now suing the parties for “unlawful and careless removal of the children”, and, “for the damage suffered and to be suffered” by the family.

The case was originally raised by former Telegraph journalist and family court campaigner Christopher Booker, who passed away in July.

Child welfare cases