Lawyers in London sent details of a family court hearing via Facebook as part of their attempts to warn a man in Poland that he could be jailed if he did not bring his three-year-old daughter back to England.
Solicitors at law firm Dawson Cornwell sent documents to Pawel Oboz’s Facebook page to notify him that a judge in London had found him to be in contempt of court and was preparing to pass sentence.
But Mr Oboz, 34, who is Polish, did not respond and has been given a 12-month jail term in his absence for breaching orders to return daughter Isabella to her mother, Evelyn Rojas Sanchez, 37, who is from Costa Rica, in London.
Detail has emerged in a ruling on the case by judge Mr Justice Cobb following hearings in the Family Division of the High Court in London.
Lawyers said the couple both worked for sportswear firm Asics – Mr Oboz in Sosnowiec, Poland, and Ms Sanchez in England.
They said the couple met and married in the United States before moving to England in 2011 and settling in Richmond, south west London.
Isabella was born in England at the end of 2011.
The relationship ran into difficulties and Isabella had been “retained” in Poland in May 2014.
Ms Sanchez then began legal action and judges in England ordered Mr Oboz to return Isabella to the jurisdiction of England and Wales.
Lawyers said he had not complied.
Mr Justice Cobb said he found Mr Oboz – who lawyers say is living in Sosnowiec with Isabella – to be in contempt at a hearing in early February.
The judge said Mr Oboz was not at the hearing.
And he said he had adjourned sentencing to give Mr Oboz the chance to return Isabella to England and obtain legal representation.
Mr Justice Cobb said “multiple efforts” had been made to “serve” Mr Oboz.
He said Dawson Cornwell staff, who represent Ms Sanchez, had left a voicemail phone message, as well as sending documents by post, email, courier and Facebook.
A solicitor had also tried to speak to Mr Oboz on the telephone – with the help of a Polish speaker at the firm – but Mr Oboz had “cut the call off”.
Mr Oboz did not attend the court hearing and had not returned Isabella to London.
And Mr Justice Cobb handed down a 12-month jail sentence – in Mr Oboz’s absence - at a hearing in London on Monday.