US Representative Urges Brazil to Return Abducted American Child

David and Seanb Goldman On February 4th, 2009, U.S. Congressman Chris Smith from New Jersey state spoke before the House Committee on Foreign Affairs during its hearing on "US Policy Toward Latin America in 2009 and Beyond." The congressman made a statement condemning Brazil's weak record of enforcing the Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction.

Smith brough to light the case of American David Goldman whose son, Sean Goldman, was abducted by his own mother to Brazil. The woman remarried in Brazil and soon after died. Even after her death the Brazilian Justice refuses to return the boy to his father who lives in the United States. Her comments are now a part of the official Congressional Record.

On the same day, Congressmen Smith introduced House Resolution 125, "Calling on the central authority of Brazil to immediately discharge all its duties under the Hague Convention by facilitating and supporting Federal judicial proceedings as a matter of extreme urgency to obtain the return of Sean Goldman to his father, David Goldman, for immediate return to the United States."

Additionally, this resolution describes all of the various failings of the Brazilian judiciary and law enforcement in the handling of this case, and calls upon the United States Government to declare that Brazil is a "Country Not Compliant with the Convention."

On February 5th, Senators Lautenberg and Menendez of NJ released an open letter to Brazilian President, Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva. The letter summarizes the case and urges President Lula to take action and return the child to the United States.

Additionally, it warns of the precedence that could be set if a strategy of delay and legal miring so that the child adapts to his abductors is permitted to become a basis for denying the return of any abducted child.

Congress's sudden involvement in this case was spurred by the national reaction to the NBC Dateline television special featuring David Goldman and his tragic story of the abduction of his son. On January 30th, nearly 5 million viewers tuned in to learn of this heartbreaking saga.

Their response was overwhelming, flooding websites and email bins, searching for more details and demanding action from both governments. Nearly 30,000 people signed the petition or joined the Facebook group to show their support for David's efforts to be reunited with his son.

Congressman Chris Smith and his wife were among those watching. The Smith's were moved by David's plea for help and his obvious love for his son. At his wife's urging, Congressman Smith immediately contacted his staff to inform them that he was going to get involved.

That very night, his staff contacted David Goldman and scheduled a meeting for the following Monday. At the meeting, the congressman presented David with an offer: he would do everything in his power to help David bring his son back home including accompanying David to Brazil for any future court proceedings.

The opportunity to honor that promise came quickly. David and Congressman Smith flew to Brazil together on February 5th, 2009 to meet with high level government officials and to attend a court ordered mediation hearing.

Together with U.S. Ambassador Clifford Sobel and David's Brazilian legal representatives, the pair met with Sean's Brazilian guardian and Judge . At this hearing, David was finally granted the right to visit his son for the first time in four and a half years. Other issues related to custody of the child were not determined.

The illegal behavior of one person and his success in manipulating the Brazilian justice system has brought international attention to the human rights record of an entire country. In addition to the Goldman case, there are nearly fifty other open cases of children abducted to Brazil from the United States alone.

Certainly this is not what President Lula wishes to deal with as he prepares to enter into negotiations with the new administration in the United States over critical issues such as free trade and biofuels.

Yet there is little doubt that unless he and Justice Minister Tarso Genro act to ensure that this case and others like it are handled at the federal or supreme court level and that judges are directed to follow the Hague Treaty, he will face public demonstrations as well as resistance from Washington during his upcoming visit to United States.

Lautenberg/Menendez letter:
AP Story on Chris Smith visiting Brazil:


0 #76 The anger of the Brazilian president who reinvented the wheelJonathan Porto da Sila 2009-12-23 12:01
Before you start reading to know that I used the translator for this there must be many errors
As Brazilian I am ashamed that my government retaliate his diplomatic failure in Honduras in a child, should common sense prevail in the case of Cuban boy! The child has to stay with his biological father! I hope that the American Embassy in Brazil use diplomacy strong pro-active for the corrupt Brazilian Judiciary not put obstacles!
Just for you Americans have an idea how we Brazilian suffered the members of the current Brazilian government were members of terrorist cells communist south america, 1960 by this sympathetic FARC in Colombia and the Bolivarian Revolution Mad Hugo Chavez of Venezuela and recently Ahmadinejad of Iran, the political Brazilians like traveling very much and do little pra combat the misery and poverty of the people of Brazil and now want to appear as a counterpoint of the G-7?
But do not worry! these nut cases that now govern Brazil already are starting because in 2010 there will be elections for president and Lula "the president walker" can not be re-elected, I hope Barack Obama will protect us as he did in Honduras where Lula change your mind.
have a happy Christmas and prosperous new year, enough to buy tropical fruits and will enjoy the carnival in Rio de Janeiro in 2010!
0 #75 DisgraceTiffany 2009-03-18 12:26
I use to be fascinated with The Brazilian Culture. I have seen Bebel Gilberto times. I will never go to Brazil. i would be way to scared. I might not come back.
0 #74 Double-Dot 2009-02-27 14:16
they do make to very fine sail boats .
Not as good as the ones you build. ;-)

Celio is an idiot and coward . He must be a Brazilian ex-pat in Zimbabwe, hating everything American. Don´t waste your time arguing with him.

Long live our Lone Star state. ;-) :D ;-)
0 #73 no DD they have some good pointsforrest allen brown 2009-02-27 03:44
they do make to very fine sail boats .
there space ships are good also
and the exocet is a very good air to sea wepon system

now trying to protect there clutuer by renaming all internet functions well way off
and by being so anti US have let so many muslims in the country they cant control the riots by them demanding
rights they dont deserve

got to have some pitti on the good french whitch Celio is not one just by the way it writes
0 #72 CelioDouble-Dot 2009-02-25 14:08
Shut the fuck up, you Frog.
Im certainly 100% european, both parents and grandparents are european and so on!
Big deal.
The Frogs cant even make a decent airplane and have to seek the help of the fucking Brits and the Krauts. All you are capable of doing is to drink your wine that tastes like horse pee, when the Krauts are invading your worthless land and cry over the shoulders of the Brits who in turn have to come rushing to us to save the asses of you both.

Then you have to elect that fuck Sarko who is a big bullshitter and a philanderer to lead your country. I still wonder why that Fuck Hitler didn't carpet bomb Paris. Brown is correct. You asses were saved in WW I,WW II and Indo-China by US.

Then you come and correct Brown´s English. Typical of Gallic arrogance.

God bless America and fuck the frogs.
0 #71 forrest allen brownCelio 2009-02-25 11:24
Im certainly 100% european, both parents and grandparents are european and so on!

If Im French or not, that is something i will let your imagination decide as Im not describing my life on this website

from TEXAS live on my boat been to more places then NATGEO

but dont claim any land as a home .
don't claim any land as home ... NO "A" THERE

just dont like people whom think the US is bad just because of lack of knowing the truth like more people dont like the french
have you ever though of that
just don't like people WHO think the US is bad just because of THE lack of knowing the truth THAT more people don't like the french

You are not even half breed here... probably a Brazilian student wannabe Texan because your English is far from NATIVE.. So I shall not waste my time with you !
0 #70 so now we know why you are so anti USforrest allen brown 2009-02-25 08:05
just cant get over algeria & vietnam or ww2 or 1 for that fact.

from TEXAS live on my boat been to more places then NATGEO

but dont claim any land as a home .

just dont like people whom think the US is bad just because of lack of knowing the truth like more people dont like the french
have you ever though of that

So are you true french or some half breed or or move in arab ???????
so the illeagle muslims still complaining about therer rights !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
0 #69 forrest allen brownCelio 2009-02-25 06:22
Some things I want to say to you:

I don't shop in WalMart,
I am not keen on movies,
I don't drink your booze, I drink Stella (Belgian beer)
I never drink Red Bull, do your research That is proven to be bad for your health and it was banned from France..
I don't wear your clothes, all the clothes here are made in China..
My car is Peageout.. thats French..
I mostly fly with Airbus that is a British French company
and I live in France not US..

You don't sound native American with your very broken English... You are trying to be American.. !

Are you Brazilian ? So you are a Brazilian wannabe American, how sweet ! You should choose a better country to be naturalized !!!!
0 #68 if you hate the US then why do you speak and write ENGLISHforrest allen brown 2009-02-25 02:33
watch the movies we pruduce ,
drink our booze , red bull, eat at Mc Ds
try to by our clothes ,drive the cars , fly in the planes we build .
live in the US ?????????????

if you hate the jews , would you give up the cell phones they invented them
you hate the US give up the internet

hate of a hole country just plane stupid , and we all know you can not fix stupid

do you know how many brasilians were killed in the towers ??????? i bet not
0 #67 Double-DotLinderman 2009-02-24 13:24
We are loved by everybody in the world
Spot on, Double-Dot. The rattle snakes are no competition to us. ;-)

God bless America

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