On behalf of The Marks Law Firm, L.L.C posted in Child Custody on Thursday, September 23, 2010
Approximately 11,000 to 12,000 children are considered missing at any given point in time after being taken from the United States of America according to the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children. Many of those children are abducted by one of their parents in a custody dispute. In 2009 alone, the Office of the Children’s Issues of the U.S. Department of State received 1,135 requests for assistance in international parental abductions.
One father of three from Lafayette, Louisiana is one of those parents. His children have been missing for over two years from the time their mother illegally refused to return them to the United States in June of 2008.
A native of Argentina, the father met and married the mother, a U.S. Citizen, in Argentina in 1999. They moved to the United States in 2003 “to give the kids a better life” after the father had received numerous death threats. While vacationing in Argentina with the children, the mother called the father and refused to return. The father pleaded with her to return for months, and he “told her it was wrong and would have severe consequences to the children. It was illegal.”
Divorce seemed to be the only option for the father after her refusal, and the court awarded him sole, physical custody of the three young children in 2009. The father has been battling ever since for the return of his children. The custody dispute is currently on the docket for a judge in Buenos Aires based upon the Hague Convention. The Hague Convention is an international treaty signed by 81 countries, including Argentina, which facilitates the return of children who have been wrongfully removed from their country of habitual residence.
“I’m living every day like they are coming tomorrow, you know? And every time I try to take something (down), it’s too painful,” the father said about decorations made by the children. “It’s like separating from them. I just can’t.”
Source: jconline.com “Man’s custody battle reaches across hemisphere” Sophia Voravong 9/23/10