Case news

Most recent articles added to the case archives



Breach of Trust Complaint filed against Mai-Ly Latrace by CWA

Date: 1995-05-24

see attached
Mai Ly Latrace was accepting donations to be taken to Vietnam, but kept them in a storage unit for personal use or private sale.

2 CHILDREN RETURNED TO CARROLLS' CUSTODY

Date: 1995-05-19

2 CHILDREN RETURNED TO CARROLLS' CUSTODY

May 19, 1995
Janice Haidet
Dayton Daily News   

A Greene County agency relinquished custody of two disabled Carroll family youngsters, but kept the right to monitor the Cedarville home where four adopted children died without explanation in 1992-93.

The Greene County Children Services Board and attorneys for Kathleen and Timothy Carroll, the children's parents, on Thursday reached an agreement about the custody of Samuel, 7, and Isaiah, 12. Both disabled youngsters had been staying in foster homes since December 1993. As the agency began feeling more comfortable about care of the children, the agency began allowing them to visit their home more frequently.

Isaiah and Samuel have been staying in the home steadily since February, but Thursday's agreement officially restores full legal custody to the Carrolls, said Dennis Gump, Mr. Carroll's lawyer.

Greene County Prosecutor William F. Schenck said he feels comfortable with the agreement but said, ``Isn't it interesting to note that since we've intervened and taken custody, no more children have died in that home?''

Is he a placement specialist or baby trader? Women cross borders, then abandon tots

Date: 1995-05-16

The Washington Times
Author: Chris Stephen; LONDON OBSERVER SERVICE

BUCHAREST, Romania - John Davies is the man Interpol and half the police forces of Eastern Europe suspect of violating international laws on adoption by selling babies to wealthy Americans from his base in Romania.

"We've had four national police authorities and three U.S. government departments investigating us over five years and nobody has ever been able to produce anything that we've done that is illegal," Mr. Davies says.

Last month it was the turn of the Croatian police to arrest Mr. Davies on suspicion of baby smuggling, only to drop charges for lack of evidence. Now he's back at his home in the remote Transylvanian town that has been his base for the past five years.

Mr. Davies is suspected of being one of a shadowy breed of entrepreneurs operating the East European baby trade.

In the West, demand for adoption has never been higher. In Eastern Europe, orphanages are jammed with unwanted children.

But matching the two has become a bureaucratic nightmare. For anyone offering a shortcut, the rewards can be high.

Wade case stirs calls for more accountability in child-abuse probes

Date: 1995-05-15

DANA WILKIE
The San Diego Union-Tribune

What could be more tormenting than being accused -- falsely -- of raping your child?

Jim Wade -- now well known to San Diegans as the father mistakenly charged five years ago with raping and sodomizing daughter Alicia -- lived this nightmare. Thanks to the law's arm, he and his family now have about $3.7 million for their suffering.

In some people's minds, there are other reparations to be made. One of them is shaping the law so social workers and other child-abuse investigators are more answerable for their accusations, as they probably should have been in the case of Jim Wade.

But here, where the pace of lawmaking plods, reparations are not as obvious as the Wades' $3.7 million court settlement, nor as immediately gratifying. Two lawmakers offer compelling arguments for bills that would hold social workers more accountable for their actions. Just as compelling are the arguments of children's advocates who oppose the bills.

It can be difficult for one who listens to the arguments to come down on either side.

Now Chosen, Chinese Girls Take to U.S.

Date: 1995-04-27

In an Upper West Side apartment building, to the soft, angular sounds of Chinese lute music on a tape recorder, six Chinese girls, the oldest 3, stepped and turned, turned and stepped, waving long red ribbons as the rhythm required.

They were performing the Chinese ribbon dance, a wave here, a wave there, in a class taught in Mandarin. They were also being initiated into what is perhaps the littlest sisterhood in Manhattan.

The dancing girls, whose class is a cultural support group, have all been adopted by American families and brought to the United States from China, part of an exodus of orphans -- 1,313 children, 90 percent of them girls, the State Department says -- since 1992, when China enacted a law making it easier for foreigners to adopt Chinese children.

State may suspend license of therapist

Date: 1995-04-21

JOHN WILKENS and JIM OKERBLOM
The San Diego Union-Tribune

State regulators want to suspend or revoke the counseling license of a La Mesa psychotherapist they say coerced a raped child into falsely identifying her father as the attacker.

Kathleen King Goodfriend was "grossly negligent or incompetent" in her treatment of the child, Alicia Wade, according to a formal complaint filed by Sherry Mehl, executive officer of the state Board of Behavioral Science Examiners.

The complaint, made public yesterday, also alleges that Goodfriend "recklessly caused emotional or physical harm" to the girl and that she submitted false or fraudulent claims for payment in the case.

"Something needs to be done about her, she did some bad things," the girl's father, Jim Wade, said yesterday from his home in Missouri. "I hope they did a good job getting their stuff together and can make a good case."

Goodfriend did not return three phone calls from The Union-Tribune to her office yesterday seeking comment on the allegations.

Paper: Stolen tot lives in Iowa

Date: 1995-04-04

The Gazette (Cedar Rapids-Iowa City)

Paper: Stolen tot lives in Iowa
Washington Post probe of Ukrainian baby sales identifies Stanton couple
Author: Washington Post
and Gazette staff reports (1 of 2 stories)

LVIV, Ukraine - A southwest Iowa family adopted an infant in 1993 who apparently was stolen or purchased by a Ukrainian doctor from an unemployed, alcoholic Ukrainian woman, according to the Washington Post.

Authorities have arrested and charged two doctors and are investigating others for taking newborns from their mothers in 1993 and 1994 and selling the babies for profit.

Depending on the outcome of the criminal cases, the foreign adoptions could be found illegal, according to a Ukrainian official.

Records in four cases reviewed by the Post showed the babies went to the United States - one to Darwin and Miriam Hanson of rural Stanton, Iowa, and three to the Cleveland area.

The Hansons - reached Monday by The Gazette - revealed little about their son's adoption.

NEW EVIDENCE EXPECTED IN BABY'S KILLING

Date: 1995-03-31

Author: BYLINE: Bill Gardner, Staff Writer

Charges against a Lakeville woman accused of killing her adopted baby have been reduced as a result of new evidence presented to Dakota County Attorney James Backstrom.

Although Backstrom would not provide any details about the new evidence, he said he dismissed previous grand jury charges against Julie McClure and convened a new grand jury to consider the new evidence ``in the interests of justice.''

Backstrom said he wanted the grand jury to hear ``all available expert testimony and evidence pertaining to this case.''

The second grand jury indicted McClure on charges of second-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter in the the August 1993 death of 10-month-old Jessica Li McClure. The previous grand jury had indicted McClure on those two charges plus first-degree murder involving the commission of a past pattern of child abuse.

UKRAINIANS CHARGED WITH STEALING BABIES FOR OVERSEAS ADOPTIONS

Date: 1995-03-22

Washington Post
Author: James Rupert; Washington Post Foreign Service
Dateline: LVIV, UKRAINE

Ukrainian authorities are investigating what they say is a ring, involving local doctors, that stole or bought newborn Ukrainian babies and supplied them to foreign couples. Records from the investigation show that at least a handful of the infants are living in the United States as adopted children

Ukrainian authorities said they have arrested and charged two doctors, and are investigating others, for having taken newborns from their mothers in 1993 and 1994 and sold them for profit. A doctor who has helped investigate the case said physicians involved in the scandal sometimes obtained babies by falsely declaring that the infants had died -- and then sold them to foreigners, including Americans. He said local and provincial officials used falsified documents to quickly approve the infants' transfers abroad.

Baby-trade gangs face global curbs

Date: 1995-03-20

LEONARD DOYLE
The Independent

In Moscow last year, Laura Binkley, a Canadian aged 36 who was employed by an unlicensed US adoption firm, the Adam Children's Fund International, was murdered for the takings of her safe. In the safe was between $2,000 ( pounds 1,300), according to her employers, and $40,000, according to those who speculate that she was murdered to eliminate unwelcome competition in the private-adoption business.

The international adoption trade is a booming if uncertain industry that provides potential for profit, misery and happiness for middlemen, mothers andadopting parents. Next month a new international treaty on adoption comes into effect in many of the countries where the worst abuses occur. There were 8,195 babies taken for adoption to the US last year and an unknown number to Britain, where low official figures mask what adoption specialists say are numerous unofficial adoptions carried out by private agents.

Briton trades in ethnic cleansing victims' babies

Date: 1995-03-13

Leonard Doyle
The Independent

A British adoption specialist who is on Interpol's list of suspected baby traffickers is exploiting loopholes in Eastern European adoption laws to send dozens of infants a year to the United States and Canada for profit.

Linked to the religious right-wing in North America, and promoted by televangelists, the unofficial adoption service is run by the Solomon Corporation, an offshore company registered in the British Virgin Isles and a US front organisation, the Adams Children's Foundation, which says it aim is "to save babies from abortion".

The organisation has powerful friends in the US and when Romania opposed the transfer of 28 Romanian babies to American families over a year ago, the country was told it would not obtain Most Favoured Nation trading status unless it relented. After an intervention by the White House, the infants were adopted on humanitarian grounds, overriding fears expressed by US diplomats in a memorandum that it was a "baby smuggling/adoption scheme".

DEATH: HELEN MARIE VAUGHN BRIGHT (grandmother's Obituary)

Date: 1995-03-11

DEATH: HELEN MARIE VAUGHN BRIGHT

A very special wife, mother, grandmother, sister and friend, Helen Marie Vaughn Bright, 73, died on March 8, 1995 in Salt Lake City.

People v. Hawkins-Rusch

Date: 1995-02-03

212 A.D.2d 961 Page 1
212 A.D.2d 961, 623 N.Y.S.2d 465

(Cite as: 212 A.D.2d 961, 623 N.Y.S.2d 465)

People v. Hawkins-Rusch

N.Y.A.D. 4 Dept.,1995.
Supreme Court, Appellate Division, Fourth Department, New York.

PEOPLE of the State of New York, Respondent,
v.
Lisa HAWKINS-RUSCH, Appellant.

Feb. 3, 1995.

Defendant was convicted in the Ontario County Court, Henry, J., of criminally negligent homicide in death of her 13-month-old adopted daughter and sentenced to one and one-half to fours years' imprisonment.

Defendant appealed. The Supreme Court, Appellate Division, held that:
(1) evidence supported conviction;
(2) evidence of daughter's prior injuries was admissible to prove intent and to negate defense of accident or mistake; and
(3) sentence was neither harsh nor excessive.

Affirmed.

Headnotes

[1] Homicide 203 1135
203 Homicide
203IX Evidence
203IX(G) Weight and Sufficiency
203k1133 Homicide in General
203k1135 k. Intent or Mens Rea. Most Cited Cases

NO PRISON IN KILLING OF BABY GIRL, WOMAN ADMITTED SHAKING INFANT TO DEATH IN 1976 IN MORTON

Date: 1995-01-13

PEKIN -- More than 18 years after killing her adopted infant daughter, a 44-year-old woman was sentenced Thursday to probation and community service for the crime.

Victoria Neal, who faced a possible prison term, pleaded guilty last October to a count of involuntary manslaughter in the death of 1-year-old Danielle Christine Neal. She admitted she violently shook the child Aug. 30, 1976, while visiting friends in Morton. Danielle Neal died three days later in a Peoria hospital, and her parents returned to their Toledo, Ohio, home.

NO PRISON FOR 1976 TODDLER'S DEATH

Date: 1995-01-13

PEKIN - A former Tazewell County woman, convicted of involuntary manslaughter in the 1976 death of her adopted daughter, was sentenced Thursday to 30 months probation, fined $1,000 and ordered to complete 300 hours of community service.

Victoria Neal pleaded guilty to the charge in October. In exchange for that plea, prosecutors dropped a murder charge against her that could have sent her to prison for 14 years.

Prosecutors sought an unspecified prison sentence Thursday, but Judge Robert Cashen disagreed. Involuntary manslaughter carries a maximum five-year prison term.

Neal was charged in late 1993 after she made incriminating statements to a California social worker about the death of Danielle Neal, 2. Neal was living in Irvine, Calif., at the time.

The girl was injured in August 1976 at a residence in what now is Morton. The home was owned by friends of Neal and her husband. The girl died three days later at Saint Francis Medical Center in Peoria.

Pound Pup Legacy