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Author Topic: Maria Carolina Case  (Read 12226 times)

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Offline KBZensen

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Maria Carolina Case
« on: March 08, 2009, 11:35:07 PM »
Maria Carolina Zensen-Simoes Case
illegally retained in Brazil


01-Jul-2003    
My daughter Maria Carolina Zensen-Simoes is born at Mount Sinai Hospital in Manhattan, NY.  Her mother is Maria Angela Simoes, Brazilian National on a valid student visa.  I am her father and my name is Klaus Bernd Zensen.  I am a German National on a valid work visa in the U.S.  My daughter's mother and I are "domestic partners" but we are not married.  Maria Carolina has American, Brazilian and German citizenship.

Aug-2003    
The mother expresses her desire to leave the United States and relocate to her hometown Rio de Janeiro.  I am not happy about the mother's desire, but respect her plans.  Both mother and I start working out a shared parenting agreement, assisted by two attorneys, John Patti (mother) and Carolann Aschoff (father).

Feb-2004    
A consent order is signed by both parents and by Maureen Mantineo, Judge at the Superior Court of New Jersey, granting the mother 9 months and me 3 months parenting time per year.  The consent order includes a detailed visitation and child support schedule.  Both parents agree that legal custody shall be shared between father and mother and that the State of New Jersey shall retain jurisdiction regarding all issues of the child.

Feb-2004    
Mother and daughter leave from Newark Liberty Airport to Rio de Janeiro.

Jun-2004    
I prepare for my daughter's first visit to NJ.  My mother (my daughter's grandmother) and our family baby sitter arrive from Germany to spend 1 month with me and Maria Carolina.  I fly to Brazil to spend a transitional week with my daughter and then to bring her back to NJ.

Jul-2004    
The mother refuses to sign travel authorization for my daughter, which is required in Brazil for children to leave the country.  I seek help at the U.S. Consulate, German Consulate and Rio de Janeiro children's office, without success.

Aug-2004    
The mother applies for full custody in Rio de Janeiro Family Court without notifying me before the hearing.  Custody is granted to the mother on a temporary basis. When I hear about the mother's action, I apply for assistance under the Hague Convention on international child abduction.  I also file an enforcement motion in the NJ court.

Nov-2004    
NJ Judge Maureen Mantineo finds the mother to be in violation of parenting agreement, ordering her to sign the required travel authorization, allowing me to make up parenting time immediately and suspending child support until my parenting time has been made up.

Dec-2004
I travel again to Rio de Janeiro to spend a transitional week with my daughter and bring her back to NJ for visitation.  However, the mother does not cooperate. I am being told for seven days in a row that my daughter is not at home and cannot be visited.  After one week, I return to NJ without my daughter and very frustrated.

Mar (?) 2005
A NJ Judge finds the mother in continued violation of the shared parenting agreement, suspending child support.  I contact the U.S. State Department and retain the Brazilian attorney Ricardo Zamariola.

Jul-2006
After more than 1+ year "wait time", the Rio de Janeiro Family Court schedules a hearing regarding my motion for parenting time with my daugther, based on the NJ consent order and The Hague convention.  

Sep-2006
The mother files and received approval from Rio de Janeiro Family Court that my daughter may under no circumstances leave the national territory of Brazil.  My Brazilian attorney and I were not informed until after the hearing.

Sep-2006
Based on negotiations between my and the mother's attorneys in Brazil, I can visit my daughter in Rio de Janeiro for five days from 09 AM to 06 PM.  Photos of the happy reunion can be seen at www.mariacarolina.com

Dec-2006
The Rio de Janeiro Family Court orders a long-term psychological and social study for daughter, but no parenting time for me.  Begin and end of the study are not defined.

2007
I sent a number of parcels with presents to my daughter for her birthday for Christmas, as well as other occasions, all of which were returned to me unopened with a stamp from the Brazilian Postal Service "acceptance refused".  I send a postcard to my daughter once per week but never hear any feedback.

2008/9
My daughter is now 5 years old and starts communicating with me through www.orkut.com.  We are exchanging videos messages and dream of playing games together.  I tell her stories via youtube like this one: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kPW3Kk05_zw

Offline KBZensen

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Re: Maria Carolina Case
« Reply #1 on: March 09, 2009, 12:37:36 AM »
Here is the correct youtube link:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kPW3Kk05_zw

Offline ma23peas

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Re: Maria Carolina Case
« Reply #2 on: March 09, 2009, 02:16:59 AM »
I will be praying for your situation!  She has your beautiful eyes!  Please, don't be anxious...save all your energies for those great stories you tell her and if they won't accept her presents (returning them) simply start using that money you would normally spend on gifts to put into a savings account for her...you can even start a journal where you can write about your childhood, your family, your life experiences and your dreams for her...I have written a journal entry a day every month of my children's lives..they will receive that on their 18th birthday and have memories they can cherish, they especially ask me to write stories about my life as a child...so precious to all children!  Keep up the diligence!!
Tara

Offline sue

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Re: Maria Carolina Case
« Reply #3 on: March 09, 2009, 12:59:29 PM »
How can it be legal for them to hold a hearing without the other parent's cousel present?  Doesn't it seem to you guys that this act alone is proof of illegal actions from the judges?

Offline momof2

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Re: Maria Carolina Case
« Reply #4 on: March 09, 2009, 02:22:25 PM »
What a sad story for you Klaus. Such a beautiful little girl and you seem to be a loving father. I hope what is happening will help all of the fathers and mothers who have been separated from their children wrongfully. We will not forget your children!!
:) Momof2

elle

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Re: Maria Carolina Case
« Reply #5 on: March 10, 2009, 01:45:04 AM »
Every time I hear of another abducted child to Brazil, I cringe. What is wrong with the court system over there? There is always a one year plus "wait" time before the case is even heard. Is sounds like they do it on purpose, to make sure that (a.) maybe the left behind parent won't file through the Hague and after one year has gone by, they won't be able to. (b.) after one year has gone by, the abducting parent can claim that the child is accustomed to the environment, so therefore the child should remain here. It's like these judges have the same rulings in every case, no matter what the circumstances are. It's really sad to learn that Klaus and Carolina were robbed of so much time, just like David and Sean. Klaus, I'm so happy that at least, you get to keep some sort of contact with your daughter. I'm sure she enjoys the video messages and stories. I hope you and Maria Carolina are reunited soon. Keep fighting ....never give up. Someday she will know the truth and she will know your love for her never diminished. The proof will be there for her to see.

Offline tweinstein

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Re: Maria Carolina Case
« Reply #6 on: March 10, 2009, 08:22:35 AM »
Quote from: gail;4124
How can it be legal for them to hold a hearing without the other parent's cousel present?  Doesn't it seem to you guys that this act alone is proof of illegal actions from the judges?
Apparently, this is a common legal strategy. It has occurred to nearly every left-behind father I have spoken with.

Offline KBZensen

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Re: Maria Carolina Case
« Reply #7 on: March 10, 2009, 11:55:20 PM »
Quote from: ma23peas;4039
I will be praying for your situation!  She has your beautiful eyes!  Please, don't be anxious...save all your energies for those great stories you tell her and if they won't accept her presents (returning them) simply start using that money you would normally spend on gifts to put into a savings account for her...you can even start a journal where you can write about your childhood, your family, your life experiences and your dreams for her...I have written a journal entry a day every month of my children's lives..they will receive that on their 18th birthday and have memories they can cherish, they especially ask me to write stories about my life as a child...so precious to all children!  Keep up the diligence!!
Tara

Thank you for your kind words Tara!
I have been successful in turning the frustration into something positive and productive, which hopefully will benefit my daughter in the long run:  I am building a Brazilian Perfume Franchise in the U.S.  http://www.boticario.us
Thank you again for your encouragement!
Daddy Klaus

Offline KBZensen

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Re: Maria Carolina Case
« Reply #8 on: March 11, 2009, 12:01:11 AM »
Quote from: gail;4124
How can it be legal for them to hold a hearing without the other parent's cousel present?  Doesn't it seem to you guys that this act alone is proof of illegal actions from the judges?

Gail,
I tend to agree, however, what may seem illegal for you and me may business as usual in Brazil.  In the hearings that I attended, there was apparently a strong sentiment in favor of the mother, the judge made me feel as if I was the defended, not the plaintiff.  Also, it took me over a year to finally get my hearing for parenting time, while the mother apparently gets it within one week without any apparent reason.  
Klaus

Offline KBZensen

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Re: Maria Carolina Case
« Reply #9 on: March 11, 2009, 12:07:06 AM »
Quote from: elle;4387
Every time I hear of another abducted child to Brazil, I cringe. What is wrong with the court system over there? There is always a one year plus "wait" time before the case is even heard. Is sounds like they do it on purpose, to make sure that (a.) maybe the left behind parent won't file through the Hague and after one year has gone by, they won't be able to. (b.) after one year has gone by, the abducting parent can claim that the child is accustomed to the environment, so therefore the child should remain here. It's like these judges have the same rulings in every case, no matter what the circumstances are. It's really sad to learn that Klaus and Carolina were robbed of so much time, just like David and Sean. Klaus, I'm so happy that at least, you get to keep some sort of contact with your daughter. I'm sure she enjoys the video messages and stories. I hope you and Maria Carolina are reunited soon. Keep fighting ....never give up. Someday she will know the truth and she will know your love for her never diminished. The proof will be there for her to see.

Elle,
thank you for your message and your encouragement!  I had the same suspicion that the "wait" time is fully intentional to avoid The Hague.  
Klaus

Offline KBZensen

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Re: Maria Carolina Case
« Reply #10 on: March 13, 2009, 01:37:48 AM »
Quote from: ma23peas;4039
I will be praying for your situation!  She has your beautiful eyes!  Please, don't be anxious...save all your energies for those great stories you tell her and if they won't accept her presents (returning them) simply start using that money you would normally spend on gifts to put into a savings account for her...you can even start a journal where you can write about your childhood, your family, your life experiences and your dreams for her...I have written a journal entry a day every month of my children's lives..they will receive that on their 18th birthday and have memories they can cherish, they especially ask me to write stories about my life as a child...so precious to all children!  Keep up the diligence!!
Tara

Tara,
thank you for your message and encouragement.  I agree with you on a lot of things and yes, I am saving monthly into a College Savings account so she can enjoy a good university in the future.
Thank you again!
Daddy Klaus

GoMango

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Re: Maria Carolina Case
« Reply #11 on: March 31, 2009, 11:59:46 AM »
Klaus - I went through the entire process of getting my son returned to the states - State Department, Detectives, Missing and Exploited Children, Police, Interpol, two count systems and threats of incarceration in a foreign country of my ex-wife's origin. I am American with an American child - it all started in NJ.

Please contact me so that I may see if I can help you....

GoMango

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Re: Maria Carolina Case
« Reply #12 on: March 31, 2009, 03:59:26 PM »
Klaus,

I have been through a child abduction to Denmark. I went through the entire process and got my son back - The Hague, Filing a complaint in NJ against my then wife, Filing with Missing and Exploited Children, Interpol, Detectives, international police, dealing with two court systems on both sides of the Atlantic and in fear of being arrested in Denmark when I found out during Christmas vacation they weren't coming back.

Please contact me here as I may be able to help....

Offline Alezio

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Re: Maria Carolina Case
« Reply #13 on: April 13, 2009, 07:05:18 PM »
I feel so sorry for you being apart from your little child. It is such a sweet thing you reading to her and talking to her via you tube...It just breaks my heart to know how painful it is to not participate in your child's life while she grows everyday. Keep up on what you are doing and be sure that one day she will know that what it's happening it's not right.
I also feel your pain!
 
Alezio.

Offline Feltian

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Re: Maria Carolina Case
« Reply #14 on: June 05, 2009, 01:21:07 PM »
Oh my God... The civel court of Rio is just putrid! Unbelievable! Have been spreading your case now Klaus. This disgusts me so much!