04/21/2004 at 12:00 AM EDT
Infant girls adopted over the Internet before becoming the center of a trans-Atlantic custody tug-o-war are back home in the U.S., officials said Thursday. The chief executive of England's Flintshire County Council, which had custody of the 9-month-old twins, said the children were accompanied by three social workers from Britain on Wednesday and returned to their native St. Louis. There they were "safely (placed) with foster parents, on a confidential basis, pending a decision on their future by the Missouri court." Judith and Alan Kilshaw, a British couple who located the twins on the Web and adopted them in Arkansas, gave up their custody fight in Britain last week. On April 9, a High Court judge ordered the babies returned to St. Louis, where their estranged biological parents are each seeking to regain custody.