LAKEVILLE, Minn. (AP) — The father of two Minnesota girls found safe after being missing for more than two years says the family is "ecstatic" the teenagers are back home.
Gianna and Samantha Rucki of Lakeville, now 16 and 17 years old respectively, hadn't been seen in public since April 2013 after disappearing in a custody dispute. Police with a search warrant found the girls at a horse farm in western Minnesota on Wednesday.
The girls' father, David Rucki, thanked authorities for finding the girls. In a statement Friday, he called it "a very emotional time for all involved" and asked for privacy for the family.
"Thank you for the kind thoughts and prayers and we hope to continue to receive support from the community moving forward on this healing journey," the statement said.
The girls' mother, Sandra Grazzini-Rucki, was arrested last month in Florida but had declined to provide information on their whereabouts to investigators. She remains in jail, with bail set at $1 million.
In an interview in April, Grazzini-Rucki denied having anything to do with her daughters' disappearance.
Police believe an underground network of family court critics was hiding the Rucki sisters.
Lakeville Lt. Jason Polinski said Friday the investigation was still in progress.
"We have a lot of evidence to go through," Polinski said. He said the process of reuniting the family had begun.
Information from: Star Tribune, http://www.startribune.com