ORADEA, Romania (AP) _ A British charity worker went on trial Friday for smuggling a Romanian baby girl to Britain.

John William Boast is charged with seizing the 15-month-old baby, Laura Varga, from a hospital in Oradea and illegally taking her across the nearby Hungarian border and on to Britain. He denied the charge.

Laura was smuggled out of Romania in July 1995. She was later found, without papers, with a family in northeastern England.

Boast said he took Laura Varga for a walk last summer, but returned her to the hospital. There are apparently no witnesses.

Boast, 47, works for Britain's Great Harwood charity and lives in a village near Oradea. If convicted, he could face up to five years in jail.

In 1994, a British couple was sentenced to two years in a Romanian jail for trying to smuggle a baby out of the country. But they were released on probation after diplomatic pressure.