Dominic Vincent Gardner

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Left: Dominic, circa 2004;
Right: Dominic in August 2008

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Vital Statistics at Time of Disappearance

  • Missing Since: December 6, 2004 from Reston, Virginia
  • Classification: Family Abduction
  • Date of Birth: May 7, 2003
  • Age: 1 year old
  • Height and Weight: 3'0, 40 pounds
  • Distinguishing Characteristics: Caucasian male. Brown hair, brown eyes. Dominic may use the last name Zachariadis. He speaks English and German.
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    Details of Disappearance

    Dominic and his brother, Alec, disappeared from Reston, Virginia on December 6, 2004. They were abducted by their non-custodial mother, Stefanie Barbel Judith Zacharidis Gardner. Photos and vital statistics for Stefanie are posted below this case summary. Stefanie is a German citizen and met her husband, Gregory Gardner, online in 1998. They married only two months later and she moved to the United States to be with him. In late 2004, Stefanie told Gregory her mother in Germany was terminally ill and traveled to that country with Alec and Dominic. They never returned and Gregory learned the story about his mother-in-law's illness was false.

    Gregory traveled to Germany and petitioned for custody the children, but the German judge granted custody to Stefanie. Gregory has accused the judge of being biased against him because he was the children's father and an American. In February 2005, after Gregory returned to Reston, he filed for divorce and custody of Alec and Dominic in 2005. The final ruling granted him sole custody of the boys and ordered Stefanie to return them to the United States. He then went to the FBI and asked for their help in getting the children returned to him. A federal warrant for international parental kidnapping was issued for Stefanie on August 10, 2006.

    Stefanie, Alec and Dominic are still in Germany. Stefanie maintains that the German ruling giving her custody is binding and American courts have no power to force her to return her sons to their father's care. The children's cases remain unsolved.

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    Stefanie Barbel Judith Zacharidis Gardner
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    Above Images: Stefanie Barbel Judith Zacharidis Gardner

    Date of Birth: September 17, 1974
    Age: 30 years old
    Height and Weight: 5'6, 120 pounds
    Distinguishing Characteristics: Caucasian female. Brown hair, brown eyes. Stefanie was born in Munich, Germany. She speaks English and German.

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    Investigating Agency
    If you have any information concerning this case, please contact:
    Federal Bureau of Investigation
    Manassas, Virginia Office
    202-278-2000

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    Source Information
    The National Center For Missing and Exploited Children
    Interpol
    The Fairfax Times

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    Updated 2 times since October 12, 2004.

    Last updated September 9, 2010; details of disappearance updated.

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