An 8-year-old Ivory Coast boy whom a woman tried to smuggle into Spain in a suitcase last month has been reunited with his mother.

A statement from the city government of Ceuta, a Spanish enclave in North Africa, said Adou Ouattara, was returned to his mother Monday at a center for the underage where he has been cared for since border police discovered him on scanning the suitcase of a Moroccan woman May 7 in the city.

The boy's father, who lives legally with the mother in Spain, remains arrested on human rights abuse charges for trying to have the boy smuggled into Spain.

Through his lawyer, the father claims he knew nothing of the suitcase plan, believing the son was to be brought in by car with a visa.