Couple accused in child services case returns to court

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By Andrew Michalscheck By Andrew Michalscheck

PHOENIX -- A Mesa couple accused of defrauding hundreds of people throughout the Valley was back in court Thursday.

Michael and Ciara Coultrap are facing several charges of fraud and forgery for running a child custody visitation and mediation business called Legacy Family and Children Services out of their home.

Ciara Coultrap, whose legal name is Michelle Ciara Madarieta, allegedly lied about her credentials, and Michael helped keep up the ruse, all to charge families for financial gains.

The couple has been released from jail, but a judge ordered them to stay at home with a curfew and monitoring ankle bracelets.

“It only proves that these people are dangerous and they need to be stopped in whichever way we can do it, through the public or through the courts,” said Nisha Chirnomas, who said she and her husband were victims of the Coultraps.

Many of the people allegedly victimized by the Coultraps want their child custody cases reexamined.

“Every case that was decided by any judge based on the documentation that the Coultrap’s permitted should be reopened by that judge and be examined with the open eye of what really happened,” stated Gerald Chirnomas.

The Coultraps have denied the allegations, and on Thursday they declined to comment.

They’re due back in court in January.