Adoption: man convicted to 6 years for kidnapping
January 22, 2007 1:37pm CST
I'd like to share a current story that's been making headlines in my country. A brasilian immigrant has a child with a portuguese man. She registered the child as having an unknown father, since the father didn't seem interested in the child. She gave her daughter for adoption and a couple took over the custody. Almost five years later, the police took the biological father to take a paternity test and it was confirmed the child was his. He decided he wanted to keep the child. Because the adoptive parents didn't want to give away the child, the biological father took the matter to court. The adoptive mother ran away to an unknown location with the child and the adoptive father stood in trial for kidnapping charges. He was convicted to serve 6 years and pay a fine of 30 thousand euros. He is currently in jail. In the meantime, a civil moment is trying to release him and the matter of the custody is being appealed to the Supreme Court. Psychologists say that the child might suffer a lot if she is taken away from her adoptive family and forced to live with a man she has never seen (the biological father). The biological mother says that she doesn't want him to have the child, that she chose to give her daughter up for adoption so she could have a good life that she could not provide for her, and that if the court keeps its decision, she will try to flee to Brazil with the child and ask for asylum. The matter has generated much controversy, both in society and as far as the interpretation of the law is concerned. Most people side with the adoptive father, a military man who has given up his own freedom to keep a child he has raised since she was a baby. In the meantime, the adoptive mother and the child are still in hiding. Because this is a brave act, people are generally touched by this story. What is your opinion? Who do you think should keep the child? The biological father or the adoptive couple?
23 Jan 07
Firstly the child should never have been allowed to have been adopted out without the fathers consent. The biological mother should have been arrested for making a false statement as she would have known who the father was. And although I feel for the adoptive parents, they should not have taken the child, but the punishment given is too harsh. In cases like this the adoptive parents should still keep the child, and slowly ease the child back into their biological parents lives, and let the courts have a final say once the child is comfortable with the parent. I know what its like to have a child kidnapped by the other parent, its something you'll never wish upon your worst enemy.
23 Jan 07
Yes, the process was handled poorly... But also, none of this would've happened if the father wanted to keep or at least help support the child when she was born! Now he wants the child, but at what cost? I don't think he's taking the child's best interests in consideration.
24 Jan 07
Did the father know that he'd gotten the woman pregnant though? I know a few guys who havent known about getting someone pregnant until months after the child has been born, and only then because they couldnt get a government payment without the father paying child support. You are very right about the father in a way though. If he was completely aware from the start then he certainly had no right to wait for so long before he did anything. But did he wait because he didnt know where the child was, or was he just an ignorant father who couldnt be bothered for the first few years? Either way, no parent should rush in to take full custody in these case's it's life damaging for the child to begin with, Id hate to know the trauma a child goes through in these circumstances.
24 Jan 07
The biological mother informed him that she was pregnant, but he suspected that it wasn't his baby, so he didn't want to have anything to do with the baby (aparently their relationship was a one time thing). He only found out because, five years later (!!!) he was forced to take a paternity test.
22 Jan 07
I feel very sorry for the poor little child who has no say in all of this. To take the child back from the adoptive parents would be devestating for the childe, as they are the only parents it has ever known, and by now, a bond would have developed between them. My advice as a lay person, would be to let the adoptive keep the child and grant visitation to the father. Then when the child is old enough, he or she can decide who to live with. It is a very difficult scenario and I hope everything works out for the best interest of the child.
27 Jan 07
I guess the fact that they would not allow the father visiation rights would definately be a good motive for the court descision! To me this alone is morally wrong also illegal to with hold a child from their biological father! well at least in a regular case i am not sure about adoption though! I think that they shouldn't have been so selfish on both parts in the beginning and everything would be ok right now!
• United States
22 Jan 07
Someone needs to slap the mother. Repeatidly and often. The biological father should have been contacted long ago and the child offered to him when it was put up for adoption. From that point on the whole system breaks down. Its impossible to say what should be done now. Its going to be rough no matter who gets her.
22 Jan 07
Thanks for your reply. The mother did contact him, even when she was pregnant, but, as I mentioned, the father had no interest in keeping the child, he even questioned if it was his, but never wanted to do a paternity test (the police forced him to do one and that's how he found out the child was his). Some people are wondering what his motives are, now, after almost five years, to want the child back. Some people think maybe he wants money, because if he keeps the child, the mother may have to pay child support to him. Nobody knows for sure. But it's a complicated issue.
27 Jan 07
I agree that the child is definately already had some affect already. I mean hiding and running away from everything must already have taken some affect. I feel that it should have been thrown out of court and not even been allowed to be taken in a court room. I mean why even have adoption if something like this can happen???
27 Jan 07
I believe that for the childs best interests that the child should definately stay with the adoptive parents. The child has obviously been loved and nurtured and has a solid based home. I feel sorry for the adoptive father and he is truly a brave man and this shows how much he truly loves the girl! The father didn't care then and if he really cares now than he would have left everything as it was!