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13 10 06 Booker ML 2While there are hundreds of parents imprisoned so that their children can be put into ‘care’, especially foreigners, there are always also ‘extreme’ and ‘exceptional’ cases.

Acknowledged to be the worst of all child snatching cases is the one of the Nigerian couple Gloria and Chiwar Musa whose seven children were taken by Haringey Council. The last one in prison – right after birth – despite Sir James Munby’s judgement of 2003: Para 44: iv) It is a dreadful thing to take a baby away from his mother: dreadful for mother, dreadful for father and dreadful for the baby.

Christopher Booker had written 14 articles about the Musas. Whilst in HMP Holloway, Gloria told Melissa about us McKenzie Friends and thus we opened this horrendous can of worms of

  • foreigners being targeted – Melissa estimated some 50 women in Holloway alone;
  • once inside, parents are actively prevented from advancing their legal proceedings: Melissa was not ‘produced’ for court hearings that took place without her;
  • lawyers are much more interested in getting money from the ‘public gravy train’ called Legal Aid than to operate and perform in their clients’ interest.

As barrister Michelle Freedman said “We are all professional losers.” For they actually hardly ever get children back to their parents, it seems.

However, with Slovak TV and demos outside the UK Embassy in Bratislava two Slovak boys were flown back. But the father had lost job, house and marriage in the process… Who will compensate him?

John Hemming MP had already published Mother to be deported whilst her son is kept for adoption.

Now that she’s in Washington, the questions for Melissa and her now 6-year old son are:

  1. What will it take to get them re-united?
  2. Will Barnet Council arrange for Skype contact as requested in our letter?
  3. Will her son’s wishes be heard: where is my mummy? I want to see my mummy!
  4. Will it be acknowledged that his best interest is to be reunited with his mother – after a separation of 21 months without any contact?
  5. How can anybody dare to adopt him when the mother desperately wants to care for him?
  6. Can publicity make up for the absence of justice, fair trials and human treatment in prison so far – and re-balance the hearing scheduled for 05 December?
  7. Are WordPress and Facebook good enough to complement Christopher Booker in his steady reporting in The Telegraph?
  8. Will other mainstream media find her story sufficiently revolting to break the media cover-ups of child abuse?

This Sunday’s account of Melissa’s passport story is not quite accurate but it paints the overall picture very well again: Social workers damn us both ways – the other side of the story is a steep increase in care applications.

We had raised the money to get a new passport and held it for Melissa. When she was supposed to be deported on 21 July, the US Embassy asked us to get it to Holloway. But then we won the ‘stay of deportation’.

On 12 September, we were not asked. So we took it to Heathrow and handed it to TASCOR staff who accompanied her to Washington. They promised faithfully that they would make sure she would have a bed and a suitcase for her belongings and generally ‘reception and rehabilitation’, as the guidance says. But the reality was VERY different…

I was told the passport had been ‘cancelled’ because she can’t hold duplicate documents. Since then Melissa discovered it was still valid after all. But she needs her birth certificate to have it handed out to her…