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Brazil’s Supreme Grants Injunction and Boy Sean Goldman Stays in Brazil

zzzMinister Marco Aurélio Mello, from the Brazilian Supreme Court (STF) decided to grant habeas corpus filed by the maternal grandmother Silvana Bianchi to keep nine-year old American Sean Goldman in Brazil.

With the decision, Sean Goldman must continue in the country. Yesterday, the Federal Court of the 2nd Region had determined that Sean Goldman be taken to the U.S. consulate in Rio in 48 hours so that he could get back to the United States with his father.

The child's father, David Goldman, arrived this afternoon in Brazil.

This drama started when the boy's mother, Brazilian Bruna Bianchi Carneiro Ribeiro, left her husband, David Goldman, for an alleged vacation of two weeks with her son, then 4, in Brazil.

They lived in the city of Titon Falls, in New Jersey. When Bruna arrived in Brazil she call the husband to tell him that the marriage was over and that she would not return to the US.

While she continued married to David in the United Sates, Bruna got a divorce in Brazil without the husband's consent and remarried in Brazil famous lawyer João Paulo Lins e Silva. She died, however, while giving birth to her child with Lins e Silva.

At the time of Bruna's death last year, David Goldman went to Brazil to bring his son back to the United States. Since then, he fights for custody of the boy in the Brazilian courts against the stepfather of Sean and his maternal grandparents.

In June, a judge from the 16th Federal Circuit had already determined the return of the boy to his biological father. Lins e Silva's attorney, Sergio Tostes, appealed though, at that time, to the TRF.

Silvana Bianchi in her preventive habeas corpus asked for  an injunction to prevent the boy's departure from Brazil without him being heard directly by the first instance judge. 

According to the STF, she wants the court to hear the boy's testimony so he will be able to say if he really wishes to leave the country with his biological father or would rather stay in Brazil with his Brazilian family, the step-father, maternal grandparents and little sister.

The grandmother contends that the Federal Court in Rio decided to send the boy to the United States without hearing the testimony of the child, "stopping him from expressing his opinion about his compulsory departure from the country, as provided for in Article 13 of the convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction" or the Hague Convention (Decree 3413/2000), Article 12 of the Convention on the Rights of the Children (Decree 99.710/90) and section II of Article 16 of Brazil's Statute of Children and Adolescents.

The Supreme Court in previous rulings about the case determined that the final decision should be taken by the Rio de Janeiro justice. It also rejected another habeas corpus application filed on July 30.

  • Show Comments (4)

  • anonymous

    You nailed that one Traveir: Shame on Brazil is right!
    You nailed that one Traveir. Dysfunctional to say the least. When I was leaving Brazil years ago they were in the process of railroading an American pilot for the accident over the Amazon that killed dozens, maybe over 100 people. Sad and tragic as it was, the courts were being pressured by public opinion and the families of the victims who needed to blame someone. Despite numerous reports and investigations and admissions by traffic controllers testifying that the radar communication network over the Amazon was faulty and in poor condition and that the plane of the American pilot had been off their radar for hours, hence they could not warn him, as they should have, that he was flying off course heading straight for a passenger plane, the “justice” system needed to blame someone, and it seemed more convenient to blame the American (who they seem to love to hate) rather than the screwed up technology and infrastructure of Brazil. There were other accidents that followed, like the plane that “slipped off” the runway, and crashed through a highway, and other reports of near misses involving the over-extended and overworked traffic controllers, but they seemed determined fry the American. I don’t know what ever came of this since I left the country and stopped following it, but yet one more reason why I couldn’t get the hell out of Brazil sooner. Yeah, in the case of this boy, if the shoe was on the other foot Brazilians would be protesting wildly at the US embassy, but in this case, I couldn’t imagine such a reaction.

  • anonymous

    fried: you write “hehehehe” A child is torn from his family and this is your pathetic moronic adolescent response?

  • fried chc



  • travelr

    This is absurd and a perfect example of how dysfunctional the Brazil justice system is.
    This is nothing but a power play by the family of the deceased wife and her husband. It is also a violation of an international treaty which if the shoe were on the other foot, Brazilians would be screaming for justice. This child has neither the legal right, nor the intellectual ability to make a decision on his status, and any child psychologist in the world can explain why his testimony is irrelevant after the family has programmed him against his father.

    Shame on Brazil ! ! !

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