Since 2003 Kristīne Misāne lived and worked in Mozambique, where she established a successful business. In 2012 she met a South African citizen and 4 years later the pair had a daughter. Kristīne also has a minor son from her previous marriage.
The conflict started when the woman refused to loan a large sum of money to the man. Following a violent attack and constant abuse, in May 2018 Kristīne fled to Latvia to save her children and herself from her violent de facto husband.
Afterwards she went on a business trip to Mozambique via Denmark in the same year but was detained in Copenhagen for being on Interpol’s list. She was being searched for child kidnaping, violation of the court ruling on non-removal of the child from the country, fraud and document forgery. All accusations had been initiated by Kristīne’s de facto husband.
Due to the careless actions of the Latvian authorities, by January 2020 the woman had already spent more than a year in a Danish prison. The Danish court had already decided to extradite Kristīne Misāne to South Africa, which is a third world country, where she would face 15 years in prison with human rights violations and a risk of never seeing her kids ever again.
Considering that during the year Kristīne spent imprisoned in Denmark none of Latvian or Danish authorities were interested in saving the woman, her representatives decided to raise their voice by approaching the media, stakeholders and the society in Latvia and Denmark.
Our aim was to encourage the Latvian and Danish authorities to urgently address the situation so that a citizen of the EU would face a fair trial in Latvia.
In order to reach our goal, it was important to create a snowball effect and build a massive PR campaign ensuring that the society and the media hear Kristīne’s full story and regularly follow any developments of the case, thereby encouraging the authorities to take action and seek for a solution.
The campaign included proactive international media relations in Latvia and Denmark, regular social media communication, communication with Latvian politicians, involvement of NGO’s and organization of protests in Latvia, Denmark, Finland and other European countries. Our main KPI was the safe return of Kristīne Misāne to Latvia for a fair trial in the European Union.
Kristīne’s case became the agenda for the Ministry of Justice, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, various officials and members of the Parliament of Latvia. The President of Latvia, Mr. Egils Levits took the initiative, bringing together the responsible parties to find a solution.
People from all over Latvia voluntarily continued to organize protests against the extradition of Kristīne Misāne to South Africa. Residents started an international petition signing which was signed by more than 40 000 people. Our campaign reached more than 700 publications and 20 million contacts in the media in both Latvia and Denmark. Facebook page SAVE KRISTINE is followed by more than 2 800 people, but our organic reach during active campaign period in social media was more than 600 000 people.
As a result, Kristīne returned to Latvia for a fair trial in the EU. This case also ignited a discussion on legislation errors in Latvia.