|Peter Bille Larsen|
|University of Waterloo Adoption Summit 2010|
Below is a selected (not comprehensive) list of reports, presentations, and studies of irregular procedures in international adoption, especially the buying, defrauding, coercing, and kidnapping of children away from their birth families.
From Cross's presentation: “I keep getting asked … why didn’t you charge her [Lauryn Galindo] with human trafficking? She couldn’t be charged with human traf-ficking; human trafficking only deals with sex or forced labor. You can get away with buying babies around the world as a United States citizen, it’s not a crime.”
Richard Cross, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agent’s presentation at Samford University, Cumberland School of Law, on April 15, 2005, about his investigation of Lauryn Galindo’s Cambodian operation which bought, defrauded, or kidnapped children from their birth families for the purpose of international adoption. Cross’s investigation led to Galindo being tried and jailed on federal charges.
To see or hear his presentation, or to read the transcript, click here and scroll to the bottom of the web page.
Jonathan Dickens is a senior lecturer in social work and director of the BA and MA in social work at the University of East Anglia, Norwich, United Kingdom. He lived in Romania for three years, where he studied the international aspects of social work and the impact of intercountry adoption on the Romanian child welfare system.
“The paradox of intercountry adoption: analyzing Romania’s experience as a
sending country,” International Journal of Social Welfare 11.1, 2002: 76-83
Study and analysis of how intercountry adoption affects the "sending country's" child welfare system. Dickens concludes that international adoption is set up to meet meet the needs—not primarily of the children or adoptive parents—of international adoption agencies, domestic child-welfare systems, and international political interests. The country's child care legislation gives formal priority to domestic alternatives to institutional care—preventive services, family reunification, foster care and in-country adoption. Concludes that in Romania, intercountry adoption remained a priority because of the large amounts of money to be earned. Suggests that intercountry financial aid for child welfare services should not be tied to intercountry adoption, because it paradoxically undermines the effectiveness of those services for the children who are left behind.
Sarah Dillon, “Making Legal Regimes for Intercountry Adoption Reflect Human Rights Principles: Transforming the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child with the Hague Convention on Intercountry Adoption,” 21 B.U. INT’L L. J. 179, 2003.
Arun Dohle, "Inside story of an adoption scam," November 13, 2008.
This article examines India’s international adoption process, focusing in particular on Preet Mandir, a children’s home in India that placed 518 children for adoption between 2004 and 2006, most internationally. This article outlines evidence that Preet Mandir was sending children without their birthfamilies’ permission; bribing India’s central authority in order to retain its license; and doing so for profit. Extensive detail includes names of the countries and Western adoption agencies involved.
Wendy Galvin, is the founding partner of Galvin Law, a New Zealand firm specializing in international adoption. “INTERNATIONAL ADOPTION—The good, the bad and the ugly: A South Pacific perspective,” Presentation for the International Bar Association 2005 Conference, Prague Czech Republic, September 24, 2005–September 30, 2005.
Galvin states: “Intercountry adoption is a strange blend of humanitarian outreach and semi-commercial exploitation on an international scale, with significant political implications."
- Explores characteristics of both sending and receiving countries using the examples of Samoa and New Zealand, respectively.
Peter Bille Larsen is a social anthropologist specializing in social equity, indigenous issues, and political ecology. In these articles, Larsen reports that while doing fieldwork in Vietnam, five women asked him for help getting their children back.
- “Will the Rục children come home? Part III: Revisiting the words of a Rục mother, legal loopholes and Vietnamese social policy,” May 10, 2008.
- “Will my child come home? Shedding light on the grey-zones of international adoption,” October 14, 2008.
Trish Maskew teaches a course in adoption law and policy at American University’s Washington College of Law. She served as a consultant to the Permanent Bureau of the Hague Conference on Private International Law and helped author its newly published Guide to Good Practice on the Implementation and Operation of the 1993 Hague Intercountry Adoption Convention. Maskew was founder and, until 2008, president of Ethica, Inc., a non-profit organization dedicated to adoption reform.
- "Child Trafficking and Intercountry Adoption: The Cambodian Experience," Cumberland Law Review, Volume 35. 3, 2005
- "The Failure of Promise: The U.S. Regulations on Intercountry Adoption under the Hague Convention," American University Administrative Law Review, Vol. 60:2, (2008)
- "Red Thread or Slender Reed: Deconstructing Prof. Bartholet's Mythology of International Adoption," co-author Johanna Oreskovic, Buffalo Human Rights Law Review, Vol. 14, forthcoming (2008).
Judith Masson, “Intercountry Adoption: A Global Problem or a Global Solution?” Journal of International Affairs Vol. 55.1, Fall 2008.
Describes how intercountry adoption can undermine child welfare systems. Argues that regulatory standards, particularly the control of private adoptions, are required to eliminate abuses such as the abduction and trafficking of children.
“If I Give You My Child, Aren't We Family? A Study of Birthmothers Participating in Marshall Islands-U.S. Adoptions,” with Stephanie Matsumura. Adoption Quarterly Vol. 5.4, June 1, 2002.
In a study of 73 birthmothers in the Republic of Marshall Islands, a small Western Pacific island nation with a total population of 68,000, more than 80 percent of the birthmothers believed that their children would return at age 18, better educated and wealthier. They believed they would help care for their original families, as is consistent with their cultural conception of adoption.
“Openness in International Adoptions A Study of US Parents Who Adopted Children from the Marshall Islands,” with Jamie Wyatt, Boston College, and Gregory Pettys, Brigham Young University. Adoption Quarterly Vol.8.3, October 11, 2005.
Examines the experiences of U.S. parents who adopted children from the Republic of Marshall Islands. In general, these parents embraced openness from the start; had difficulty maintaining contact with birth families; and still would recommend open international adoptions to prospective adoptive parents.
Peter Selman is visiting fellow at Britain’s Newcastle University and chair of the Network for Intercountry Adoption. He is editor of Intercountry Adoption: Developments, Trends, and Perspectives. For more current or particular statistical information, email Peter Selman directly.
- Table 11: Adoptions from Ethiopia 1998-2008: Countries ranked by number of children received in peak year 2008.
- "The rise and fall of intercountry adoption in the 21st century," International Social Work, 2009.
“Trends in Intercountry Adoption,” Journal of Population Research, 2006.
Analyzes data related about 20 developed nations’ adoptions from other countries. Notes that between 1998 and 2004, inter-country adoption increased by 42 per cent.
“Intercountry adoption in the new millennium; the “quiet migration” revisited,” Population Research and Policy Review 21.3, 2002: 205-225.
Using data recorded in the 1990s by 18 nations that adopted children from other countries, looks into the demographics of intercountry adoption, including: its rapid increase; countries that adopt the most children, both numerically and per capita; and countries that “send” the most children into adoption, both numerically and per capita.
“Prime Numbers: The Diaper Diaspora,” Foreign Policy Magazine, January/February 2007. (Subscription required.)
- "(Draft Version) Child Laundering and the Hague Convention on Intercountry Adoption: The Future and Past of Intercountry Adoption," University of Louisville Law Review 48.III (2010).
- “Child Laundering: How the Intercountry Adoption System Legitimizes and Incentivizes the Practices of Buying, Trafficking, Kidnapping, and Stealing Children,” Wayne Law Review 52. 1, 2006: 113-200.
“Intercountry adoption and poverty: A human rights analysis,” 36 Cap. U. L. Rev. 413, 2007.
Using the lens of international human rights law, argues that, where the birth parents live under or near the international poverty standard of $1 per day, family preservation assistance must be provided or offered before families are allowed to legally relinquish children for intercountry adoption.
“Intercountry Adoption as Child Trafficking,” Valparaiso Law Review, 39.2, 2005: 281-325.
Analyzes when illicit intercountry adoptions constitute a form of child trafficking under international law. Reviews and applies relevant treaties on slavery and human trafficking. Analyzes the problem of money and adoption within the domestic (United States) adoption system.
“The Two Faces of Intercountry Adoption: The Significance of the Indian Adoption Scandals,” Seton Hall Law Review 35.2, 2005: 403-493.
University of Waterloo Intercountry Adoption Summit, 2010
Please email us if you have suggestions for this list.
NOTE: This page from the Schuster Institute for Investigative Journalism website offers documentation of and background about serious irregularities in international adoption. For the systemic analysis of corruption in international adoption, please read “The Lie We Love,” Foreign Policy magazine, Nov./Dec. 2008, and visit our webpages dedicated to international adoption. For ideas about fairer policy solutions, please read “The Baby Business,” Democracy Journal, Summer 2010.
© 2008-2014 Schuster Institute for Investigative Journalism, Brandeis University, Waltham, MA, 02454. All rights reserved.
Last page update: February 23, 2011