Peter O'Toole Ordered to Return Son to Former LoverAP , Associated Press
May. 24, 1988 9:39 AM ET
LONDON (AP) _ A judge today ordered actor Peter O'Toole to return his 5-year-old son, Lorcan, to American Karen Somerville so courts in the United States can decide which parent should get custody of the boy.
Lawyers said High Court Family Division Judge Sir Stephen Brown ruled in a private hearing that it was in the boy's best interests that he be returned to his mother's care in Middleton Township, N.J., pending a court hearing there.
The couple have been fighting over their son since they parted in 1983, and a New Jersey court already has given them joint custody.
The Irish-born O'Toole, 55, refused to return the boy when his scheduled 10-day visit to Britain ended in early May, lawyers for Ms. Somerville said.
The 37-year-old former model, who according to court records took the actor's name but was never married to him, had sought a court order forcing O'Toole to return her son.
Both declined to comment as they left the court today.
The hearing began Monday, with O'Toole and Ms. Somerville forced to sit only 30 feet apart in the courtroom. News reports said they refused to look at one another.
The lawyers did not say when Lorcan, the Irish version of Lawrence, would return to the United States.
O'Toole is known for such films as ''Lawrence of Arabia'' and ''The Lion in Winter.''