Over 100,000 American orphans seek American love and care
A court date for adoptive parents who beat an adopted boy from Russia was set in the U.S. Every five hours a child dies in the U.S. as a result of domestic violence. The U.S. State Department intends to ensure that at least 500 Russian orphans still move to the U.S. Meanwhile, a number of local children are available for adoption.
Daniel Kruchin was adopted by spouses Matthew and Amy Sweeney in 2006, when he was three. The couple had five children of their own. According to their neighbors, the family led a secluded life and their children were never seen playing in the street. The children were home schooled.
Not surprisingly, no one knew about the boy's life in the adoptive family. Nobody would know anything if one day last summer he had not run away from his adoptive parents.
Daniel went to the neighbors who lived far enough away from his house, and said that he was lost, and asked them to call the police. The neighbors noticed that the child's hands were bruised. The police found traces of severe beating on his body. The boy was sent to a foster home, and an investigation was started that found that the beatings were systematic.
On January 7, the District Court of Virginia ruled that the Sweeney couple should be tried. The next day, the judge set a date for the first hearing - July 23. By law, the adoptive parents may face from one to five years in prison or a fine of 25 thousand dollars.
Yet, they may get a lighter sentence or even acquittal. According to the Commissioner for Children's Rights under the President of the Russian Federation, more than half of such cases in recent years have resulted in a light sentence or probation.
The Craver couple who has tortured their adopted son Vanya Skorobogatov to death (80 wounds were found on his body) got off with a few months in prison. Teresa McNulty also got a mild sentence of eight months, despite the fact that she splashed boiling water on her adopted three-year-old daughter Dasha.
One year-old Nick Emelyantsev was taken to a hospital with a fractured skull and died shortly after. His body was covered with numerous bruises. Subsequently, the foster mother admitted that she took the child by the hand and leg and repeatedly threw him on the floor. But the sentence was quite strange: from one year to 15 years in prison. That is, after serving a short time, she can be released.
Another adoptive child in the family ended up in hospital several times with a diagnosis of exhaustion and dehydration.
Currently, there is a trial of the O'Brien spouses in the U.S. They had six adopted children, four from Russia and two from Guatemala. For seven years the couple tortured them by beating, exposing them naked to the cold, and strangling them. The worst thing is that the couple's own children - two girls and two boys - were directly involved in these tortures. While their own sons held an adoptive child by the hands, one of the girls squirted him with tear gas.
In the aggregate charges adoptive parents could face up to 60 years in prison. But according to the local press, O'Brien's lawyers are trying to ruin the case. Their main argument is that the children misbehaved because of inadequate mental condition.
According to the Commissioner for Children's Rights Pavel Astakhov, many adopted Russian children in the United States are often attributed the fetal alcohol syndrome and the syndrome of lack of affection, though there are no official documents confirming the diagnosis. In doing so, adoptive parents justify their brutal behavior, hence the lenient sentences.
However, the American parents are cruel not only to adopted children from Russia. In 2011, British BBC made a film America's Child Death Shame. Their investigation sounds like a death sentence: the U.S. is the worst of the developed countries it terms of child treatment. Every five hours a child is killed as a result of abuse or neglect.
According to government reports, in 2009, 1,770 children were killed in their homes. According to BBC and recent investigations initiated by Congress, the real number of children killed is at least 2,500.
Meanwhile, the U.S. State Department spokesman Victoria Nuland said that the U.S. government would work to ensure that Russian children whose adoption process by Americans has commenced would still move to the U.S. According to Nuland, 500 and 1,000 of American families are at different stages of processing custody of Russian children. This means that between 500 and 1,000 children should be taken away from Russia.
Meanwhile over 100,000 children in the United States are waiting to be adopted. Why do the Americans love orphans from other countries but do not adopt locally? The explanation is simple: most of these children are representatives of black and Hispanic populations.
Another important point is that in the U.S. local adopters are subject to strict control and regular checks. Because of this, the adoption procedure can last a long time. Many are denied for various reasons. In addition, adoptive parents receive substantial tax and medical benefits from the state, not to mention benefits for children.
In Russia, there are simply no such obstacles. For intermediary agencies that help potential adopters to find the right child it is only business. If customers are willing to pay, no one will check them.
No one knows how many couples who were denied adoption in the U.S. come to Russia to adopt. No one can say how many of the adopted children fall victims of domestic violence.
Only a small number of such crimes becomes public. Adopted children get different names, they quickly forget their native language. No one knows how many adoptive Russian children were actually abused in the U.S.