The former Gossip Girl star has been locked in a bitter legal wrangle with Daniel Giersch for years over the custody of Helena, six, and Hermes, eight. It began when their father's U.S. visa was revoked and a California judge allowed the German businessman to take them to France to live with him in 2012, while he worked out his visa woes.

Rutherford has been protesting the ruling ever since, insisting the case should never have been heard in California in the first place as neither she nor Giersch lived there at the time of the decision, and she recently scored a small victory when a Monaco judge agreed the youngsters should spend the summer with their mother in their native U.S.

She enjoyed an "emotional" and "incredible" reunion with Helena and Hermes on Friday (03Jul15), but the actress now admits she is worried about what will happen to her kids if California officials, who previously claimed they no longer had no jurisdiction in the case, don't work with their peers in Monaco to ensure the young U.S. citizens aren't sent abroad for good.

A court hearing about the issue is due to take place in Los Angeles on Thursday (09Jul15) and during an appearance on U.S. talk show The View on Monday (06Jul15), Rutherford said, "This is technically a legal kidnapping of two U.S. citizen children if they (California judges) say they don't have jurisdiction, because you have a court that says, 'We're gonna send them there (to Europe) and we're gonna say we're gonna maintain jurisdiction, but when it comes to bringing them home, we're gonna say we may not have jurisdiction.' So then what?"

Rutherford claims judges in Monaco have been caught up in an international situation they should never have been a part of, adding, "Well, Monaco really has nothing to do with it; it's not their problem. They're being forced to do something about it in a way that I don't even think they want to."

Meanwhile, the actress reveals she has taken some solace in the reported demotion of the California judge who originally sent her kids to live with their dad in Monaco, saying, "She's in traffic court now, I think. I think... she moved to civil court somewhere. But she's not on this (case) anymore."

Rutherford and Giersch split in 2008.