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Posted by on Dec 23, 2009 in Breaking News, International, Places, Politics, Society | 4 comments

Will Sean Goldman Be Home For Christmas?

BringSeanHome.jpg

When I first heard the news last week, my first instincts were to rush to my computer and hurriedly put together a joyful post that justice had finally been done.

However, after a series of events where hopes were raised only to be heartbreakingly and repeatedly dashed, something told me not to rush on this one.

I am talking about the five-year rollercoaster of emotions and heartbreaks for David Goldman, the father of 9-year-old Sean Goldman, abducted by his Brazilian mother more than five years ago when Sean was only four years old and taken to Brazil.

I have only been reporting on this tragedy for about one year. (My last post was in September). David Goldman, however, has been living it for more than five years, bravely and relentlessly fighting a system that, up to now, has violated all international norms.

A week ago Wednesday, a Brazilian lower court ordered that David Goldman be given custody of his son. David Goldman accompanied by New Jersey Congressman Chris Smith—who has been valiantly fighting the Brazilian bureaucracy alongside David Goldman—arrived in Brazil the next day for what was supposed to be a joyful reunion with his son, the end of the nightmare.

However, as has happened all too often in this case, the next day Brazil’s Supreme Court delayed the return of Sean Goldman to his biological dad.

The powerful Brazilian family that has kept Sean away from his father for five long years had struck again and a Brazilian Justice suspended the lower court judgment and agreed with the Brazilian family’s petition that Sean should remain in Brazil until the court decides whether they should hear the child’s own testimony.

Yesterday, however, the Brazil Supreme Court Chief Justice Gilmar Mendes ruled that Sean Goldman must be returned to his father and delivered to him by the boy’s Brazilian relatives.

Of course, David Goldman is overjoyed. However, he has “been there before,” and won’t believe it until he is on an airplane, “wheels up,” with Sean on the way back to New Jersey.

Even with this latest ruling the Brazilian family lawyers may still appeal to Brazil’s highest appeals court.

UPDATE:

There are reports that the Brazilian family has decided that there will be no more appeals and that they are making preparations for a peaceful handover of Sean to his father.

This would be the greatest Christmas present any father can ever hope for.

UPDATE II:

CNN has just reported that a regional court in Brazil has ordered that the Sean Goldman’s “handover” must take place by 9 a.m. (Rio de Janeiro time) tomorrow, Christmas Eve.

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Copyright 2009 The Moderate Voice
  • archangel

    I’ve been following it Dorian, through your good articles here, and elsewhere. I keep thinking there are things we dont understand about the legal process in Brazil. From my own brush with law school, I know that common sense isnt often considered in legal outcomes, rather the law, whatever deficits and bounties the law has in place.

    But, more, I wonder how the Elian Gonzalez case was expedited fairly quickly, even though there was huge drama around it. Huge. It must be a difference in laws between Brazil and USA, …. and somehow a difference in child protection laws as well

    I wish the best for ALL the people this young boy LOVES, including his father and others who have loved him all this time. For a child tobe returned legally is not the same as a child returned psychologically. I pray that all the adults will care for this child by being at the least courteous and decently accomodating to each other.

    Thanks Dorian …

    dr.e

    • DdW

      Thanks for your comments, dr. eI am sure that as you say, the laws and legal processes and environment are different in Brazil as they are in every other country. In this particular case there is also the tremendous political, financial and, ergo, “legal” power and influence that the maternal Brazilian family has—that has been very evident.On the other hand, I understand that the The Hague Convention on parental abductions is quite specific and clear.But, on the human level, I totally understand the grief that the maternal grandparents of the boy must be experiencing. Having a grandson myself, I can not even imagine what a pain they are going through, and I wish them well, and I hope that some satisfactory visitation agreements can be reached for them to continue to at least periodically see their grandson.Finally, as a father, I also understand the heartbreaks that David Goldman has experienced, but also the incredible joys that he is hopefully about to experience again..Although my sympathies have been with the father throughout this ordeal, I totally understand the tragedy on all sides. As you also point out, most importantly, we should all pray for the boy’s well being.

  • StockBoySF

    Dorian, thanks for the post. I hope this is the end of the father’s ordeal and the beginning of a happy relationship btwn, David and Sean.

  • marciamanzello

    The Brazilian family proved for the last time that the only interests they have in mind are their own, and don’t give a damn about Sean’s well-being, they decided to put the last nail in the coffin, which could very well cost them any visitation rights they eventually ask for in New Jersey. What ignorant and arrogant people. They think they are above the “LAW”. I am Brazilian and I am embarrassed of their behavior and the mockery they made out of my country and as well the “Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction”. If I were on David Goldman’s shoes, I would keep that boy totally alienated from those relatives. They will only serve to confuse and impose a guilty trip on the kid.
    It has been reported that they are influential and well-off, but the most pathetic thing is that they can’t even pronounce the boy’s name correctly. Ha

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