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Brazil's top court halts boy's return to US dad

  Family Law  -   POSTED: 2009/12/18 18:00

A long-running fight by a New Jersey man to win custody of his 9-year-old son from the Brazilian family of his deceased ex-wife has been delayed again — and the battle is turning ugly.

David Goldman has spent more than five years trying to gain custody of his son, Sean, who was taken to Brazil in 2004 by Goldman's then-wife Bruna Bianchi. She decided to stay, divorced Goldman and remarried before dying while giving birth to a daughter last year.

On Thursday he arrived in Rio, looking weary and cautious but hoping to finally return to the United States with his son after a federal court ruled Wednesday that the boy had to be turned over.

But the Supreme Court suspended that decision just four hours after Goldman landed, deciding the boy must remain in Brazil pending a motion to hear the child testify on where he wants to live.

Sen. Frank Lautenberg of New Jersey responded by placing on hold a trade bill that would benefit Brazil and other countries to export some products duty-free to the United States.

The reversal means the boy will be in Brazil at least until Feb. 1, following the justices' return from a recess, according to a court spokesman who commented on condition of anonymity as he was not authorized to discuss the case.


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