The lawsuit filed by World Association of Children and Parents, the adoption agency that placed Artyom with his forever mother Torry Hansen, has been scheduled to be heard in Bedford County (TN) Circuit Court court on January 3, 2012, a year and a half after it was filed. Two motions will be heard later today, though,, one to dismiss; the other to amend the petition. The case is under seal and there are no other details.
|Sheriff Boyce during press conference|
While the WACP case waited to be heard, a Russian court ordered the Hansens to pay the Russian government about $2500 a month in child support. saying that Torrie Hansen, incredibly was now denying she had had intended to terminate her parental rights when she sent Artyom packing!
Earlier, in January, the English language Moscow Times (paid subscription to access archives) ) reported--picked up by the Shelbyville Times Gazette-- that Russian children's ombudsman Pavel Astakhov tweeted that Torry Hansen, under the threat of child support, was now claiming that she sent Artyom back to Russia by himself because "he asked to see his (biological) mother and she let him go. " Astakhov said that Hansen's court testimony was "cynic slyness" that aimed to avoid making child support payments.
How the note accompanying Artyom to Moscow--and the Hansen's delivery instructions to Russian tour guide Artur Lookyanov, the real hero of this whole sordid affair--could be construed as anything other than a desire to terminate parental rights is something that only the Hansen's lawyers can explain. (The family s now on its third attorney).
It gets more headachey with the National Council for Adoption jumping in on it. .Since court documents are under seal, I'm going to let Brian Mosely, reporter for the Shelbyville Times-Gazette, who has diligently worked to untangle the Hansen mess from the beginning, take it from there (with some repetition of what I wrote above): .
Russians want support
A motion was filed last week by the World Association for Children and Parents (WACAP), the National Council for Adoption (NCFA) and adoptive parent Jennifer Terhune, requesting for more time to respond to the motion to dismiss that was filed at the end of 2010 by Henegar. (at that time the Hansen's lawyer)
Terhune is a resident of Wilson County that WACAP is asking to be appointed the guardian of the boy since she has already adopted three children from China and Korea. Attorneys representing the adoption agencies are currently engaged in a jury trial in Chattanooga and have requested until Jan. 28 to respond to the motion and set a date for oral arguments on pending matters.
Henegar argued in her dismissal motion that Tennessee does not have jurisdiction to order child support because it is not the boy's "home state," the termination of parental rights proceeding precludes the court from exercising exclusive jurisdiction, that the court should decline jurisdiction because it is not the appropriate forum and that even if the state did have jurisdiction, it could not award child support.
Last May, WACAP filed a petition requesting that Bedford County's Circuit Court appoint the agency as a temporary guardian for the boy. The matter was moved to juvenile court in August after an agreed order was signed by both parties. But in October, WACAP, NCFA and Terhune filed a second amended petition that asked the court to determine child support due from the Hansens.
Henegar wrote that NCFA has alleged it had been in contact with Russian authorities and intended to provide evidence "regarding the amount necessary for Justin's care and maintenance in Russia." NCFA has also alleged that the Russians had appointed it as the "liaison" with the court. Henegar claims.
On Dec. 13, 2010, the Municipality of Intra-municipal Formation in Moscow refined their claim, asking that Hansen pay for the support of the child. Henegar pointed out that Tennessee state law defines the "home state" as where a child lived with a parent for at least six months, claiming that the boy lived with the Hansen's in Bedford County from Oct. 7, 2009, to April 6, 2010 -- less than six months. She also states that the Moscow court has accepted jurisdiction over the proceeding since the boy has been in that country's jurisdiction for more than six months immediately preceding the filing of the petition to revoke the adoption and to seek child support.
Artyom's case is further complicated by the confusing status of his citizenship, with both countries claiming him for themselves. As far as I know, this hasn't been clarified.
Early reports indicated a married couple described as English-speaking Russian diplomats who had reared two orphans, had been appointed his guardian and that he would not be sent to an orphanage. Several later reports indicate he is indeed in an orphanage, though government authorizes deny it.
I have written extensively on this case. Please go to the right sidebar and click on the link. This entry is cross-posted to my main blog, The Daily Bastardette..