US woman who sent back Russian boy to pay $150,000

Date: 2012-05-18
Source: RIA Novosti

A court in the state of Tennessee obliged a U.S. woman, who sent her adopted son back to Russia, to pay some $150,000 in damages, child support, and legal fees, local NewsChannel5 television reported.

Torry Hansen was living in Tennessee in April 2010, when she put Artyom Savelyev, then seven, on a flight to his native Russia unaccompanied, with a note saying she did not want him because he was "psychotic." She had adopted the boy from a Russian orphanage in 2009.

Hansen, who now resides in the state of California, was sued in March for unpaid child support by her adoption agency, World Association for Children and Parents (WACAP).

A judge in Tennessee ordered “Hansen to pay her adopted son $58,000, the adoption agency $29,000 and attorney fees of nearly $63,000 as well as $1,000 a month in child support,” NewsChannel5 said.

Russian lawmakers repeatedly expressed discontent with what they called “soft punishments” for adoptive parents in the U.S. abusing their adopted Russian children. In February, a Pennsylvania court sentenced Theresa McNulty, who brutally abused her adopted Russian daughter, six-year-old Dasha, to just 23 months in jail the possibility of parole in eight-months’ time.

In another abuse case, a court in Pennsylvania sentenced Michael and Nanette Craver to 16 months in jail last November after they were found guilty of the involuntarily manslaughter of their adopted Russian son Ivan who was found dead with over 80 injuries on his body.

Russia is one of the largest sources of foreign adoptions for U.S. families. At present, about 400 Russian children are living in adoptive families in the U.S.


Torry Hansen is the Victim

Torry Hansen has filed motions that she was "confused" and shouldn't be made to pay a dime for what she did to Artyom Saveliev.

Have to say, I agree with her. I don't think she should pay a dime either. I think she should be put on a plane with a note, sent to a federal prison where she should be locked away for a long time.


Buyer's Remorse, revisited

After hearing from adopters AND adoptees for over 10+ years, I can appreciate the story coming from an AP who states he/she was not prepared properly or well enough from the agency he or she chose to use. 

Sadly, I believe Buyer's Remorse is more common than most want to think.

Nevertheless, I think adopters DO need to be held accountable for their actions, regardless of the accurate/inaccurate information they receive from agency folken.

Allow me to equate this situation to a bio-pregnancy.

Let's pretend her gynecologist told her she was going to deliver a "normal healthy child"...but the child turned out to have severe psychologica/emotional problems.

Would she have sent said "impossible" child back to her gyno?

Could she seriously think abandoning her child would have no serious consequence?

APs need to step into reality, and own what it is they choose to get into... complete with chances and risks... and financial accountability.

As bad as I may feel for an AP who feels as if he or she has been tricked or fooled, I still think an AP has a higher call and a real responsibility to the child the AP agrees to receive, regardless of the condition of the child sent.

For the record, my sympathy/empathy for Hansen is VERY limited.


Actually depending on the state and local regulations people sign their kids over to state care all the time due to mental illness, mental retardation, or significant health needs...

For example I work at a state for children who were deaf or blind. Like 80% of the kids living there were wards of the state. I had a job for a brief time to what we basically a children's nursing home, and like almost 100% of them wer state ; I am a special education teacher, on the average year 15% of the students we have are wards of the state.

Wards of the state

Correct me if I'm wrong, but in the cases you mention, aren't the parents agreeing to this plan because it has huge financial benefits?  After all, for many, even with private health insurance coverage, costs for care can be too expensive and for the children with "special needs", many services required by both parents and child are simply cost prohibitive.  If the child becomes a ward of the state, that child can become a medicaid recipient.  In short, costs related to care for that child will go from being the parent's responsibility to the taxpayer's bill and burden.  Whether the parents continue to maintain a personal relationship with their "relinquished" child after this legal maneuver is dependent upon the emotional bonds and dynamics working within that family.  

This financial decision may be best for the financially strapped and struggling parents -- but what about everyone else?  [I'm a RN, I know how medicaid cases are treated... and I've seen how the medicaid option has allowed some families to abandon without regret or remorse.  It's sad...very sad, and I believe this modern-day orphan-making, (abandoning family members because care costs too much), is happening far more frequently, in America, than most would like to think.]

However, I believe this ward-of-the-state making is a far cry from what Hansen did: she didn't like the child she received, through adoption services, and sent him back to the country that sent him.  Did she really think she could do this without any financial consequence or personal burden?  

but they do this all the time

when I was part of the RAD cult as I have dubbed it, all kinds of parents returned their children to the state, the ones the adopted.....

there apparently is a big local movement to have the child removed from their home when they become rowdy teens and send them to transition housing

that lady that runs that Ranch for Kids who takes in Russian adopted children gets all kids of kids some the states pay for her to care for....

just saying from what I have seen from "rehome-ing" in the RAD cult rings and from placing the child over to American foster care, this may not have been the worst thing to do to the kid...

locally a story hit the news the same time she sent the kid back, the local parents were given fuel to give the child over to the state here; he was placed in residential treatment; the have no parental rights or responsibilities for him at this time; and they were able to sue and win against the adoption agency who placed him with them.  He was from Russia.

Just never know how social services is going to take thing and how they are going to help or hurt....

and all over the net are stories where parents have to make criminals out of their children to get them psychatric help...  biological or adopted...  just a broken system.

just a local story.... my understanding that contray to what is reported the state of Va is/was picking up for his care.... and Bethany had to pay them some money and the director was fired... that is all.... kid is growing up in the state insitution system... 

crappy way to grow up... :( 

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