US Missionaries in Haiti Charged w Child Abduction

Submitted by: davymid 7 years ago in
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/americas/8499401.stm

Were they doing good humanitarian work, or do they deserve to go to jail for kidnapping? What say you, I-A-B?
Credits: BBC
There are 51 comments:
Female 136
i thought the camel thing at the bottom of the page was a lot more interesting...
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Male 345
@ ohthedrama, actually that does happen, that`s why you sign your 1040, just ask Willie Nelson.

The fact that this group had a religious affiliation is a red herring. If this had been some other non-profit they would probably be slapped on the hand and asked to return the children or go through the proper channels. The is a reason the Dominican Republican has had strained relations with Haiti for so long and Haitians are climbing into bathtubs to set sail for the States. Truth be told I don`t think anyone is innocent here, these people saw an opportunity to circumvent he corrupt government during a crisis and took it; but the government does have a point that child trafficking is a real concern. Who really knows, bu they made their choice and now they have to deal wih the repercussions.

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Female 1,283
I want your mind, OldOllie.
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Male 7,378
These religious kooks need to be banned from brainwashing brown babies.
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Male 158
Most corrupt nation ever. Juarez sends cops to Haiti for training.
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Male 1,399
They didn`t bribe the right guy, and now they`re paying for it. It`s that simple.

The righteous anger BS is laughable, especially from Haiti.

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Male 162
The story seems pretty self explanitory. Haitians give children to group. Group tries to leave Haiti. Haiti thinks they kidnapped them. Kidnapping at the core level is stealing. They were given these children. There was no stealing here. If anything they are guilty of not going through proper channels. Intentional? No one knows that one. I seriously doubt it has anything to do with being holier than thou. That`s just yet another knee jerk reaction to a group of people who simply just got caught without proper papers. This would be like getting your tax return from some third party company only to find out they didn`t do it right and the IRS arrests you for tax fraud.
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Male 15,832
I have no idea what`s going on in this story, and anyone who says he does is full of poo.

I do find it hard to believe, though, that a bunch of church ladies from Idaho went down to Haiti to kidnap a bunch of kids so they could sell them for profit. I find it easier to believe that they got crosswise with the Haitian government because they tried to sneak these kids out without paying the $20,000 per child "administrative fee" the government is demanding from foreigners to adopt orphans.

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Male 3,310
In general I don`t think it`s ever a good thing to kidnap people. I don`t know what moran thought this wasn`t kidnapping.
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Male 101
I read LA Times version of the story, so I didn`t read this one. But the version I read, I didn`t see anything that would allude to these missionaries thinking that they were better than the next guy.

The whole point of Christians doing this work is that we aren`t doing it for us, we are doing God`s work with our hands.

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Male 8,302
> Younglink
> Lion - are you trying to convince me, and others, that helping others in need is wrong?

No, I`m saying that helping others in need is a natural part of the human psyche, and has nothing to do with religion. It`s when you start thinking you`re someone special because you do it that you need your head checked.

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Male 43
Good, I hate those "holier than thou" people that don`t think they have to follow mans law, because they are children of God, they deserve what`s coming to them
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Male 315
Those people broke Haitian law, and are rightly charged as such. If the law is not obeyed then there is no law at all.
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Male 27
While I do believe they acted with an admirable intent, I think it was stupid to run into a country and expect to shuttle kids across the border without any papers.
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Male 820
Really, yes, what they were doing is noble, but dammit use the proper paperwork.
Yes, they should be tried in Haiti, being "told by god" to do something does not place you above the law.
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Male 76
I suppose the argument might be that: if someone commits looting in the midst of chaos (where the government did not have the capacity to support it`s own citizens) should the offender be punished? I suppose if the looter was taking a flat screen TV then the crime might be just what it looks like. But, if someone is acting because they fear imminent danger or harm and the government is not present (for all practical purposes), then the law should be applied in a more individualized way.

So, let them go with a warning and tell Haiti that until they have an effective remedy for this issue, that they have to look at each case individually.

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Male 716
Well, there is a bit if controversy. While I`m all for people helping other people, there are rumors that some people have been approached with money for the children.

While I`m not saying that they need... or can monitor every helper... a near lawless land in disaster is perfect for child traffickers, so it`s wise to be cautious.

I think we don`t know what`s going on exactly. The Haitians likely don`t either. So, in my opinion, a third party, the UN perhaps, should intervene and try to sort out the case.

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Male 17,512
"No good deed ever goes unpunished. Another instance where the Letter of the law is followed instead of the spirit of the law."

Well said, These kids were not being sold or `trafficked` Haiti was in horrible shape before the earthquake, Now it`s chaos. Who wouldn`t want to rescue orphans from that ?

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Male 101
Where is the self-righteousness or big-headedness in giving up personal time to help others. US missionaries are STILL helping out Katrina victims when other institutions stopped.

Lion - are you trying to convince me, and others, that helping others in need is wrong?

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Female 4,376
I can`t believe anyone actually thinks they should stay in jail. they AREN`T KIDNAPPERS. Their hearts were in the right places and it seems to be a huge misunderstanding.
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Male 8,302
99% of Australia`s reputation for its treatment of Aborigines comes from the Stolen Generations.

The type of Christians who send missionaries out, because they are self-righteous and convinced they are better than everyone else, seem to think anything they do is automatically right. They obviously haven`t learned a thing in almost 200 years.

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Male 101
I honestly don`t see how this is even disputed.

1) These missionaries are from the US, but they are NOT the government. The money is coming from the goodness of our hearts.

2) I can see why they were arrested - they didn`t have documentation of the kids. So obviously the suspicion of child trafficking is there. - However, if their stories hold up, which I`m sure they will, there is no reason to jail them.

The children were handed over by some parents because the parents wanted the BEST for them. I hope I would do the same in the situation. The parents showed true sacrificial love and gave up their own rights.

Rules are there for a reason, in this case I think there should be exceptions. Hopefully the judge will see the intention instead of the rules.

I hope and pray for the best of these children, that they won`t be left hungry or homeless.

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Male 670
[quote]@mervviscious

Did you read it? The kids` parents had either both died, or one had died and the other had abandoned them.[/quote]

Did you read it? It says 21 of the kids` parents just handed them over to the missionaries.

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Male 102
The US needs to stop helping other countries we have enough of our own problems, The US government is bankrupting itself.
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Male 421
they were trying to move orphans to an orphanage in a neighboring country.
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Male 675
People are dying in their country due to lack of food and clean water, and they spend more of their scarce resources jailing people that are trying to lighten their work load. Smooooooth....
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Male 660
Damned missionaries! I`ll bet those children whose parents had survived would have never seen them again. Haiti is probably a so-called "failed state", but that is no reason for foreigners to ignore the local laws, no matter how compelling the reason.
And for one of them to say that "we trust in God" is just another way of saying "we avoid taking responsibility for our own stupid decisions".
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Female 189
@mervviscious

Did you read it? The kids` parents had either both died, or one had died and the other had abandoned them.

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Male 1,793
Jail them... How would you like it if they took your kids?!!!!!!
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Male 25,416
spare me this mockery of justice (transformers quote)
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Female 1,134
@ Nidonemo

i 2nd that statement.

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Male 2,076
iambored: Guilty until proven innocent.
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Male 9,306
Please someone restrain my country...
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Male 176
Oh how fantastically stupid of these people. They should definitely be put before a judge and tried with crimes against common sense.
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Male 4,014
From the article - "Our intent was to help only those children that needed us most, that had lost either both their mother and father, or had lost one of their parents and the other had abandoned them," she said from her jail cell on Wednesday."

Thats the problem right there - what if one of the parents is incapacitated in a hospital, who then gets better and begins to search for his or her child - the last remaining part of a shattered family? I don`t think it will be a satisfactory answer to say "we thought you were a cold-hearted bastard who left you child, so we gave your child away. Little did we know you love your child, and upon recovering from your devastating injuries would seek to find the one thing remaining of your shattered life, the only thing left from the bond between you and your now deceased spouse. Whoopsie! Our bad!"

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Male 4,014
Amateurs.....there is a reason adoptions take a long time, and its called paperwork. And removing a child from Haiti without proper paperwork is kidnapping, and attempting to is trafficking, plain and simple.

No sympathy for child snatchers, which is exactly what they are until the Haitian government tells them the children can leave the country.

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Male 4,014
"they technically can`t be tried in the US, cause they didn`t cross an international boarder."

Thats FALSE. American courts can try foreign causes of action based on foreign law so long as the court has jurisdiction over the parties. Thus if all parties are in the U.S., and the crime happened in a foreign country, the U.S. court would just apply the foreign law.

Issues of extradition, etc., are besides that point.

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Male 5,620
I am not surprised by this. I wonder what the outcome will be?
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Male 4,014
"This nation building, policeman of the world/nanny state. i know what is best for you better than you do, Phenomenon. is really starting to get contagious here in the US"

Um, they are being charged in Haiti, so clearly you, um, yeah.

Anyways, its generally a good idea to ensure you have proper documentation whenever possible when dealing with custody of children. There are a multitude of reasons - kidnapping children for profit, or for the sex trade, etc.

THE MOST IMPORTANT THING IS TO ENSURE THE REAL PARENTS HAVE ACTUALLY SURRENDERED ALL RIGHTS. What happens when these people take the child to the US, he`s raised by a nice family there, but turns out his biological parents never legally terminated parentage, and want the kid back?? Guess what? KID GOES BACK.

The funny thing about laws is, often it doesn`t matter how noble your intentions. "I stole to feed my kids." Noble, yes, but illegal nonetheless.

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Female 7,866
Their intentions may have been good, if not they sure won`t tell, but there are laws about this for a REASON. If they genuinly wished to help they should have gone about it properly- they could have stayed in Haiti and ensured these children did not get lost in the system. Haiti most certainly has the right to try them - they commited an offence on Haitian soil- neither the UK or the US are in a hurry to ship foreign nationals home to be tried for offences commited on their soil.
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Male 670
How is the Haitian government still [quote]alive[/quote]
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Male 3,431
No good deed ever goes unpunished. Another instance where the Letter of the law is followed instead of the spirit of the law. I`d be interested in what the history of these particular missionaries was in Haiti and if their story holds merit and it`s just a matter of them not having the proper documentation, I`m inclined to let them go. I`m skeptical that they were up to anything too nefarious.
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Male 85
This nation building, policeman of the world/nanny state. i know what is best for you better than you do, Phenomenon. is really starting to get contagious here in the US
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Male 2,592
send them all to butt rape prison
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Male 4,807
Fair trial?? Ship them off to Gitmo, They can have a "fair" trial there, can`t they??
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Male 2,229
Kidnapping may be a stretch, but then again they; the American; also admitted to not have the proper paper work. And to Fox4Brawl, they technically can`t be tried in the US, cause they didn`t cross an international boarder. According to the article, they may not have kidnapped the kids, but they sure were trafficking they. Which is very illegal pretty much everywhere.
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Female 1,545
Fox4Brawl, it doesn`t matter what their good intentions were, they committed a crime (knowingly or unknowingly) in Haiti and should be tried in Haiti.

You give these missionaries too much credit. They knew exactly what they were doing.

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Female 1,545
Because the situation in Haiti isn`t desperate enough...let`s steal babies and ruin families, too!
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Male 233
This is stupid on so many levels. I`d like to know more details about exactly what happened, but from the looks of it, they honestly thought they were orphans, and wanted to help them. And who the hell does this Justice Minister think he is? "Why should they be tried in the US?" Because is was US missionaries who came to help your asses, out of the goodness of their hearts, came to pick up your country from the pile of rubble its become, and mainly because your judicial system is in the pooter. And what are you gunna do, keep them in jail there? If he seriously doesn`t "see any reason," he`s a total idiot.
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Male 774
HAHAHHAHAHAHAHHAHAHAHAAAAAAAAAaaaaaaa
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Male 12,138
Link: US Missionaries in Haiti Charged w Child Abduction [Rate Link] - Were they doing good humanitarian work, or do they deserve to go to jail for kidnapping? What say you, I-A-B?
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