Every Child

Has Two Parents

 
 

Articles Published About Family Law, Children's Rights, and Related Japan Topics.

Regardless of the topic, all articles on this site are listed here. Any kind of audio or video is also listed on a separate page.  (Articles related to Child and Spouse Abuse are the exception, since those are so numerous.)  Each article is also referenced on the related topic page.

2007

  1. Japanese Justice: Confess and be done with it; The Economist; February 8, 2007. This articles shows that not just family law in Japan is pretty messed up.  One common theme seems to be that judges are evaluated on how quickly they clear their case loads, which in family law, leads to judges not spending much time in proceedings they will eventually rule on.  In criminal law, a 99.9% conviction rate of defendants brought before judges, 95% of whom have already confessed and a suspiciously high number of suspects dying during up to 23 days of detention without contact with the outside world. (cached copy)

  2. Japanese court grants conditional freedom to young mother; JAPON EN ESPAÑOL; January 15, 2007 (Spanish). A judge has released Nilda Franchesca Mangual Torres, the mother of abducted son Shinta Nemoto with a 6 month suspended sentence, on 3 years of probation.  She has still not seen her son since he was abducted in July of 2006. (cached copy)

  3. New divorcees push for DNA testing to be allowed to prove paternity of newborn children; Mainichi Shinbun, January 8, 2007.  Japanese mothers want DNA testing to be recognized as conclusive proof of the father even if child born within 300 days of divorce. (cached copy)

  4. Border battles: Custody disputes have been in the spotlight lately, but they are not unusual; National Post; January 6, 2007.  Discussion of Takara and Manami Wood case in light of recent news of forced recoveries in other cases.

  5. Wedding spelt the endJanuary 06, 2007; The Sunday Mail (Qld). Coverage of George Obiso case in Australia in light of recent snatchback attempts. (cached copy)

  6. Passport application of girl born during divorce mediation with no family registry applies put on hold.  Yomiuri Shinbun, January 4, 2007.  Mother, fearing that the father would find her address never registers birth of daughter.

2006

  1. 14-year-old girl arrested for attempted murder after stabbing father; Mainichi Daily News; December 26, 2006.  14-year-old girl stabs divorced father because he would not let her see her mother. (cached copy)

  2. Part 1 of 4: Frustrated Fathers of Abducted Children Turn to Public for Support; (By Kirsten Brown Scripps Howard Foundation Wire) Washington, December 15, 2006.  Four fathers quietly filed into a theater to watch "Abduction: The Megumi Yokota Story," a documentary about North Korea's kidnapping of Japanese citizens in the 1970s and 1980s. If the names Walter Benda, Patrick Braden, Chris Kenyon and Paul Toland don't sound Japanese, it's because they're not. But their children are half-Japanese, and these fathers say Japan has committed the same crime against them that Japan accuses North Korea of committing.

  3. Part 2 of 4: Abducted Child Speaks Out About His Escape From Japan; (By Kirsten Brown Scripps Howard Foundation Wire) Washington, December 15, 2006. There is a saying in Japan: "If you look back as you're departing and you see the setting sun, you will return." On his last day of summer vacation, Chris Gulbraa, 15, rode his bike away from his home in Kasugai, Japan, without looking back - he had no intention of returning. Instead, he planned to fly to a reunion with his U.S. father, five years after his mother took him and his brother to Japan. He is the only child known to have returned on his own from such a separation.

  4. Part 3 of 4: Restraining Order Doesn't Stop Mother From Taking 1-year-old; (By Kirsten Brown Scripps Howard Foundation Wire) Washington, December 15, 2006. Patrick Braden spent only the first 11 months of his daughter's life with her before she was taken across the Pacific by her mother, Ryoko Uchiyama.  The night before their disappearance, Braden received a peculiar phone call from his ex-girlfriend, Uchiyama, who asked if he would like to spend a little time with their infant daughter, Melissa.

  5. Part 4 of 4: Japanese Laws 'Erase' American Father;  (By Kirsten Brown Scripps Howard Foundation Wire) Washington, December 15, 2006. The last time Brett Weed saw his 6-year-old son, Takoda, the pair was driving in Weed's black Ford pick-up, the one that his son liked to call, "Daddy's big truck." That was also the day Takoda cheerfully announced, "I have a Japanese daddy." Takoda's babyish words threw Weed, 42, but it confirmed what he had long suspected: his ex-wife, Kyoko Oda, was slowly replacing him not only as a spouse but also as a father.

  6. Allowances for single parents to be axed; Asahi Shinbun; December 1, 2006.  The "mother-child family addition" payments, which offer between 20,020 yen and 23,260 yen per month for each child aged 15 or younger, will be phased out over the coming three years amid moves to slash fiscal 2007 expenditure on welfare by 40 billion yen. (cached copy)

  7. Legal que el padre secuestre a su hijo; Mal panorama para boricua presa en Japón (Spanish) PRIMERA HORA; November 2, 2006. Twenty-five year old mother from Puerto Rico,  Nilda Franchesca Mangual Torres, is currently being held in Jail in Japan on a weapons charge and a disturbing the peace charge . She reached an overload point of emotional despair over her inability to see her child, and the Japanese police and government's unwillingness to help her do so. So she went to the front door of the courthouse in Japan and said she was going to commit suicide if they did not help her. She apparently held a knife to her stomach. She was arrested and has been in the jail now for 2 months. There is a huge public outrage in Puerto Rico and the Puerto Rican communities in New York and Florida in the United States. (cached copy)

  8. 'Urgent issues' dominate debate; Daily Yomiuri Online; November 1, 2006. Discusses how bullying-related suicides are a large scale national problem that is not being addressed by a proposed bill to revise the Fundamental Law of Education. (cached copy)

  9. Operator of notorious bulletin board lost in cyber space; AERA (translated from Japanese and published by Mainichi Daily News); October 10, 2006.  Although not related to family law, this article is about Hiroyuki Nishimura, the 29-year-old webmaster of Ni-Chaneru who has lost numerous lawsuits and been order to pay 10's of millions of yen. By ignoring court orders and hiding financial information, he illustrates clearly how difficult it is to enforce any civil court ruling in Japan even a monetary one.  You can just refuse to pay and it's rare for a creditor to be able to convince a court to declare individual bankrupt in order to be able to appoint a receiver to look into someone's financial affairs.  (cached copy)

  10. Japanese grandparents kidnap granddaughter because they don't like man that divorced daughter is dating.  October 14, 2006; Supreme Court suspends 10 month jail sentence from lower court.  It's unclear, but it sounds like the child has not been returned yet.  I call this the "OK for grandparents to kidnap" ruling. (cached copy)

  11. Divorces may spike after change in law; Japan Times; October 5, 2006.  As of April, spouses will be eligible for up to half of partner's pensions. (cached copy)

  12. Missing: Melissa Braden; The Early Show on CBS; September 19, 2006.  This is a transcript of a television interview with Patrick and FBI agent Herb Brown.  (cached copy)

  13. Center planned to help single mothers collect payments from ex-husbands;  The Asahi Shimbun; September 8, 2006.  Contains some interesting statistics from a government survey, giving rates of child support payments by fathers, single mothers, child visitation. Also says that "Some 20.6 percent [of single mothers] said they wanted their former husbands out of their lives...".  If you would expect a single mother to be more likely than a remarried mother to want help from the natural father, this gives us a conservative estimate of the overall rate of denied visitation.

  14. Blowing in the Wind: In the USA. Abductions Rising; Mainichi Shinbun, Evening Edition; August 28, 2006.  A report from the protest in LA at the Megumi Yokota documentary.  (original is Japanese)

  15. Child custody in Japan isn't based on rules; San Francisco Chronicle; August 27, 2006.  (Japanese version also available.) A law professor discusses why institutional reasons rather than cultural ones are to blame for bad family law in Japan.  Much of Japan's family law is based on the need to cover up the fact that Japanese courts are powerless to enforce their own decisions.  It contains an example of culturally biased opinions regarding visitation made by a prominent "family expert" in a book on visitation, as well as descriptions of apparently mainstream anti-visitation opinions expressed by family court mediators.  Both of these, until now, were only available in Japanese. (cached copy)

  16. Gabriolans rally for return of children abducted to Japan; Gabriola Sounder; Monday, July 24 2006; More on the Murray Wood case and info that children’s author Sandy Duncan, novelist, Fellow, Royal Society of Canada and Professor Emeritus, McGill University, Georges Szanto, and his wife, Alison (Kit) Szanto and Professor Emeritus, University of Alberta, Gary Prideaux have written letters of support for him. (cached copy)

  17. Parents' rights a demographic issue; The Japan Times; July 18, 2006; Law professor from Doshisha University in Kyoto postulates that prejudices against men in the family law and courts might be effecting Japan's plummeting birth rate. (cached copy)

  18. 'It's a heartless country that would separate loved ones'; The Japan Times; July 18, 2006; Article by Mark Smith of CRN Japan discussing 4 cases of parental abduction by Japanese citizens and illustrating support by the Japanese government, despite claims to the contrary by the Japanese Ambassador to Canada, Sadaaki Numata.  (cached copy)

  19. Japan Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi and Canada Prime Minister Stephen Harper Press Conference Transcript; June 28, 2006. Canadian Prime Minister Harper announced in this press conference that he discussed international parental abduction to Japan with Japanese Prime Minister Koizumi. Koizumi has no comment on this matter.

  20. Radio Interview with Japanese Ambassador to Canada, Sadaaki Numata, about International Kidnapping case of Murray Wood; March 31, 2006.  The Current, interviewed left-behind parent Murray Wood, international lawyer Jeremy Morley, and the Japanese Ambassador to Canada, Sadaaki Numata (cached copy).  They talked about the Japanese court and government responses to Murray's case and Japan's reputation as a haven for international abduction. Getting a response on the record from Ambassador Numata was a unique event. He appeared defensive and his replies show just how different Japan's family values are from so much of the rest of the world.

  21. US State Department evidence about family law problems in Japan; February 26, 2006; This describes various evidence available from the US State Department as to the problems with family law in Japan.  It includes a letter sent directly to left-behind parents. Some may be very effective in a court of law.

  22. Think of the Children : Japan's prejudiced legal system encourages desperate parents to abduct their own kids; Metropolis Magazine; January 2006. Front page feature on Japan's prejudiced legal system from this wide circulation free magazine.  (cached copy)

  23. Increased cross-national divorces raise concerns over parental abductions; Japan Economic Newswire Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge via TMCNet.com; January 03, 2006. More on the December seminar at the Canadian embassy, and a few more statistics on open cases in several countries.  (cached copy)  

  24. Japan remains haven for parental abductions; (日本語版) Kyodo News on CrissCross Japan; January 6, 2006.  This documents the strongest warning yet from Maura Harty, assistant secretary of the State Department's Bureau of Consular Affairs, "If Japan has been fortunate enough to not yet have a case where one of their citizens has lost access to their child, that day will come."  The United States said Japan ranks top among East Asian counties in the numbers of parental abduction cases. Annette Marie Eddie-Callagain, an American lawyer practicing law in Okinawa Prefecture says, "Court orders from other countries are not recognized because an order from another jurisdiction, according to Japan, is an order that they do not have to follow."  (cached copy)

2005

  1. Japan remains safe haven for parental abductions; Japan Times; December 31, 2005. Discusses Murray Woods' case and includes a quote from CRN Japan's Mark Smith.  (cached copy)

  2. Mixed marriages more popular now than ever; Asahi Shinbun; December 31, 2005.  Japanese marriages down, mixed marriages up. (cached copy)

    1. 国際結婚は15組に1組 昨年まとめ; 朝日新聞; 2005年12月31日.(cached copy)

  3. 国際的な子の奪取の民事面に関するハーグ条約 : マウラ・ハーティー米国国務次官補(領事業務担当); US Embassy in Japan website; December 3, 2005; (cached copy) Comments on Japan and the Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction from Maura Harty, US Assistant Secretary for Consular Affairs of the State Department.

  4. 別居中の子を連れ去り、父親でも犯罪成立 最高裁決定; 朝日新聞; 2005年12月09日. (cached copy)  (Article in Japanese only) A father who was separated from his wife took his 2 year old son while his wife and the child were coming back home from nursery school. There is nothing written about the couple being divorced, only 'while separated.' The judges concluded that it was a crime of abduction. The father was sentenced to 1 year in prison, suspended for 4 years.

  5. Parents, experts urge Japan to sign child custody treaty; Mainichi Daily News; December 4, 2005.  An article based on the Seminar on the Hague Convention and International Child Abduction at Canadian Embassy. (cached copy)

  6. Fighting for justice in the court of public opinion; (日本語版) Daily Yomiuri, December 3, 2005.  An article about the CRN Japan fight for change, the website and an interview with Mark Smith.  Since you are reading this website, no need to say more.

  7. When parents turn kidnappers; Daily Yomiuri, December 3, 2005.  A discussion about the problem of Japanese citizens who internationally abduct their children to Japan and use the courts to help deny access to the non-Japanese parent.  The article interviews two left-behind parents whose Japanese spouses have done this.  This is a welcome change from the recent spate of "Japanese parents wronged by foreign spouse" articles in the Japanese media.

  8. Foreign wives complain their samurai husbands no knights in shining armor; Mainichi Online; November 23, 2005.  (cached copy)

  9. Lawyer arrested over daughter's abduction; Japan Today, October 23, 2005.  A lawyer and former judge abducts his 3 year old daughter after his wife was granted custody and then had the grandparents adopt the daughter.  This is interesting because the abduction took place on the day he was supposed to be participating in visitation proceedings.  (This tidbit is not in these articles but it comes from someone who saw it on TV.)   The involvement of private detectives suggests he had to pay someone to even find out where his child was.  Part of the issue was also apparently that after getting custody, the mother then had the child adopted by her parents. This shows that the more familiar you get with the system, the more useless you know it to be.  Several articles appeared in Japanese also.  (cached copy)

    1. 実子略取の弁護士逮捕 親権めぐり争い 登校中、連れ去る; 西日本新聞; 2005年10月6日;  (cached copy)

    2. 福岡で元妻と暮らす小3娘を連れ去る~弁護士を現行犯で逮捕; 九州発 : 読売新聞; 2005年10月 6日; (cached copy)

    3. 別れた小3娘を連れ去る、容疑の弁護士逮捕…福岡県警; 読売新聞 (Yomiuri Online); 2005年10月 6日 ( cached copy)

    4. 長女連れ去り事件の弁護士、初公判で起訴事実認める…福岡地裁; 九州発 : 読売新聞 ; 2005年12月22日; It seems the court case has just started but it does say "The defendant, Watanabe, was identified as threatening and hitting the girl as she resisted inside the 'getaway' car."  Watanabe, in his deposition, was quoted as saying "as a lawyer he should have considered carefully whether his action was a crime or not." And "his only thought was that he wanted to raise his daughter as his own." (cached copy)

  10. Globalization of divorce: The downside of international romance turned sour; Yomiuri Shinbun; October 15, 2005.  A generally disgusting article that is likely the result of someone trying to rev up the Japanese media machine to justify the increasing number of international parental abductions by Japanese citizens.  But if you read carefully, it confirms that 1) Japan does not feel the need to observe international convention on jurisdiction nor decisions of non-Japanese family courts.  2) one child visitation per year is reasonable in Japan 3) Child visitation law is so non-existent in Japan, that even a Japanese citizen needs to use overseas laws. (cached copy)

  11. Heartache for parents caught in overseas custody battles; Stars and Stripes; October 9, 2005; A general article about legal issues involved with international parental abduction which mentions Japan. (cached copy)

  12. Divorce triggers furious battle over children; International Herald Tribune; March 19, 2005; Talks about Japanese husbands and wives using child access as levers to get their way in a divorce.  It ends on a positive note with one mother who successfully lets her daughter see her ex-husband, despite their differences.  (cached copy)

  13. Please Bring My Sons Back From Japan; Thats Life Magazine Australia; 2005; Detailed story of kidnapping of Anthony and Jorge Obiso by Sachi Shimada to Japan. (page1  page 2)

  14. Dad in vigil for stolen sons; The Sunday Mail QLD; June 12, 2005; Story about Sachi Shimada who abducted sons Anthony and Jorge to Japan, away from their father, George Obiso. (cached copy)

  15. Yamila Castellanos: “I know that I will recover my daughter.”; Cosas.com; April 15, 2005.  (original Spanish) Recounts Yamila's story including details before the abductions.  Tells that she had to leave Japan because she was denied a visa, even though she was participating in a legal battle in court. (cached copy)

  16. Why we’re powerless to get back abducted children; Vancouver Sun; March 15, 2005; "Murray Wood had no idea last November when he kissed 10-year-old Takara and seven-year-old Manami goodbye at Vancouver International Airport that his ex-wife was abducting them...";  (cached copy)

  17. Torn between their parents: Murray Wood believed the best care for his two children would be to share their custody with his ex-wife. He hasn't seen them since November; Vancouver Sun; March 15, 2005; "Like most stories of parental abductions, this one began with love...";  (cached copy)

  18. Foreigners are now starting to take advantage of Japan's messed up family law, as the case of two American citizens, Alexandra Mallas and her un-named husband described in this article shows.  Child-custody battle exposes court conflicts; Japan Times; February 4, 2005. (cached copy)

2004

  1. IRRECONCILABLE DIFFERENCES: Kids held `hostage' after international marriages fail; Asahi Herald Tribune on January 29, 2005; AERA magazine on December 4, 2004.  Although undeniably intended for a readership of Japanese women, this article does illustrate child related problems in international marriages.  It was also published in AERA, in Japanese, and mentions CRN Japan. (English cached copy)

  2. Yamila Castellanos held a protest at the Japanese embassy in Chile to ask for help getting her daughter back, who was abducted by her Japanese father. Two articles including videos.  Madre sigue luchando por recuperar a hija llevada por su padre a Japón (cached copyPadres apoyan a madre que fue separada de su hija (cached copy)

  3. Newsday.com series on International Child Abductions.   An excellent online series about worldwide child abductions (successful and failed) and details a number of reverse abductions to bring children home.  It also includes names of individuals who helped the parents (I have cached copies of all articles, so if these links ever break or the articles go away, let me know and I will put them up here.)

  4. Options few after mom abducts girl - Courts hold no clout for a Honolulu man whose daughter, 5, was taken to Japan; Honolulu Star Bulletin; December 6, 2004.  Alan Kaneda's story about his wife abducting their daughter Marina to Japan.  (cached copy)

  5. Utah custody battle involves feds, Japan; Deseret Morning News; October 25, 2004.  Mike Gulbraa's story continues, with the surprising revelation that despite their well-known television commercials in the US focusing on the best interests of children, "One entity that has resisted getting involved has been The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, of which the divorced couple remain members."  (cached copy)

  6. Getting custody of kids after divorce; Japan Today; October 11, 2004.  A letter by Terrie Lloyd about the problems of not being able to see your children in Japan and international divorce. Mentions that this may be accompanied by the parent losing their visa and the problem of forging applications for Divorce by Mutual Consent.  (cached copy)

  7. When Children Get Caught Up In Separation; Eye-Ai, Eye On Society; June 4, 2004 This article was partially based on interviews with Mark Smith, and so contains information on a variety of issues including lack of visitation, not signing the Hague Convention on International Parental Abduction, need for a Parent of Japanese Child visa, and Yamila's case.  Includes some Ministry of Health Labor and Welfare statistics on international divorces and children born out of wedlock.

  8. Tommy Thompson: Japan needs international child support law (日本語版 / Japanese) Asahi Shinbun, English Edition; March 25, 2004.   Secretary of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services complains that Japan is not going to participate in the multilateral Hague treaty on recovery of child support after all.  He also advocates signing the Hague Kidnapping convention and being able to enforce their own court orders. (cached copy)

  9. Divorced Japanese struggle for right to see kids  (日本語版 / Japanese) Reuters; February 8, 2004.   An interview with Japanese members of Fathers' Website.  "Rising divorce rates mean hundreds of thousands more children are being affected each year. In 2002, there were 2.3 divorces per thousand people, roughly double the rate 25 years earlier and comparable with the 2.4 per thousand level in Germany. Around 300,000 children were involved." Yet one lawyer estimates that between half and a third of divorced people in Japan are unable to contact their children.

2003

  1. Japan - A Haven for International Child Abduction?  Hiragana Times; December, 2003.  This bilingual article in the Hiragana Times magazine starts by comparing the issue of Japanese abductees to Korea with that of Japanese parental kidnapping.  It is one of, if not *the* first Japanese language articles published in Japan on the subject, and features quotes from two CRC Japan participants.  (cached copy)

  2. Tales from Japan's Abandoned Foreign Parents; The Japan Observer; November 2003.  Mostly the story of Frans Pau, a French-Danish national whose wife is kidnapped their child Isabelle, abandoned her in a children's home, took her again after Frans got her into a school in Japan.  The mother has been sentenced to jail by a French court and is wanted by Interpol. A Japanese court allowed the mother to change Isabelle's name to Maki despite the fact that Frans had legal custody, even in Japan.  After that, a Japanese court inexplicably gave custody back to the mother.  (cached copy)

  3. Chilean fights to obtain the safekeeping of her daughter (Original Spanish: Chilena lucha por lograr la custodia de su hija);  International Press; October 24, 2003.  Article on Yamila Castellanos in a Spanish language newspaper in Tokyo.  (cached copy of original)

  4. Chilean consulate follows the case of Yamila  (Original Spanish: Consulado chileno sigue el caso de Yamila); International Press; August 11, 2003. (cached copy of original)

  5. Payments and pain without end.  The Japan Times, Readers In Council, Sunday August 3, 2003. Letter to editor outlines one tactic of a custodial parent - demanding more and more money for visitation. (cached copy)

  6. No. of suicides tops 30,000 in 2002; July 26, 2003.  Japan Times.

  7. Divorced From Their Children In Japan, Foreign Fathers Have Few Custody Options;   (日本語版/ JapaneseWashington Post;  July 17, 2003; Page A09.    Four fathers with stories of Japanese mothers "legally abducting" their children to or in Japan.  The Japanese government continues to be a haven for child abductors. (cached copy)

  8. Divorce your Japanese wife - and lose your kids; July 19, 2003; Asia One.  Recap of the problems and several cases from a Singapore publication. (cached copy)

  9. Imperfect Alliance U.S., Japan at odds about child abductions; Newsday.com; July 17, 2003.  More coverage of Walter Benda whose wife was indicted for felony international parental kidnapping in the US. (cached copy)

  10. South Jordan Dad Longs for Sons Spirited Away to Japan by Mom; Salt Lake City Tribune; January 19, 2003.  The mother of Michael Gulbraa two sons is charged with two counts of third degree felony for custodial interference and federal counts of international parental kidnapping and aiding and abetting a fugitive. Japanese authorities continue to claim there has been no crime.   (cached copy)

Before 2003

  1. International Marriages in Japan: Part Two – Impact of 17 October 2002 Supreme Court decision on International Marriages; J. Sean Curtin (Professor, Japanese Red Cross University);  October 28, 2002. The Supreme Court issued its first decision on the visa status of a non-Japanese spouse married to a Japanese citizen.  Over ruling the Osaka High Court, the Supreme Court said that a marriage must be viable and ongoing, and if the Japanese spouse commits a misdeed, such as infidelity to break up the marriage, the foreign spouse may legally be deprived of his or her spouse visa.  (cached copy)

  2. Lack of Enforcement Weakens Effect of Japan's Divorce Provisions; The International Herald Tribune; February 2, 2002.   Article with viewpoints by several lawyers in Japan. (cached copy)

  3. Estranged parents snatch own kids in `abduction friendly' Japan Asahi Shinbun Online; January 27, 2002 A good overview on the subject, with quotes from multiple victims of this crime as well as experts on related subjects. (cached copy)

  4. Japan PM’s divorce typical; Los Angeles Times; June 21, 2001. Summary of Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi's desertion of one son and preventing his ex-wife from seeing their other two sons. (cached copy)

  5. Gaijin dad deported to Pakistan ahead of trial date; United for a Multicultural Japan; Date : June 4, 2001.  A Press Release decrying the sudden and secret deportation of Ken Massey, who as a result, will not be able to proceed with his lawsuit against Japan Immigration for his detention, which was scheduled for a hearing in about six weeks.

  6. Father's plight raises immigration policy questions; Japan Times; March 17, 2001. Discusses detention of Ken Massey, a 17 year law abiding citizen of Japan with two Japanese children and the law suit he is planning against Japan Immigration. (cached copy)

  7. Parents driven to 'kidnap' children; The Japan Times; December 13, 2000.  Discusses Engle Nieman's case as well as David Brian Thomas.  (cached copy)

  8. Statement by Walter Benda, co-founder of CRC Japan, on March 1, 2000, to the US Senate Judiciary Committee on the similarity of the Elian Gonzalez case and his daughters who according to his statement are being "illegally retained in Japan." (cached copy)

  9. The best parents are both parents; Japan Times; February 6, 2000.  David Brian Thomas' story in detail. (cached copy)

  10. Parents in International Custody Battles Fear Impact; Washington Post; February 3, 2000.  Information on various worldwide parental abduction cases in the light of the Elian Gonzalez incident in the US. Included is Walter Benda's well known Japan case.   (cached copy)

  11. Japanese Tourist Killed by Mob in Guatemala Market GUATEMALA CITY (Reuters) - A Japanese tourist and a Guatemalan bus driver were killed in a rural Indian market after being attacked by a

mob of about 500 angry villagers who thought they were there to steal

children, police said on Sunday http://www.nytimes.com/2000/05/01/world/guatemalans-kill-japanese-and-tour-driver.html

  1. International Parental Child Abduction - Japan; US State Department document explaining the dangers of parental abduction and other family law problems in Japan.  Has also appeared on the US embassy in Japan website.

  2. Japanese Family Law - or The Lack Thereof!; Jeremy D. Morley; date unknown.  Written by an international divorce lawyer, this is a good overview of many of the difficult issues in Japan for foreigners who want to get custody or visit their Japanese child, whether he was abducted there or is legally residing in Japan. (cached copy)

  3. Access Denied Children innocent victims of custody battles; Daily Yomiuri; December 11, 1999.   An article with several cases of Japanese parents being denied access by other Japanese parents.  Same story of using the children as weapons. (cached copy)

  4. Thai in immigration row won't return for mom's funeral; Asian Political News; January 4, 1999.  Osaka High Court allows Peancai Midchid to stay in Japan after husband's affair causes them to live apart and Immigration to reject her application for a spouse visa.  This was later overturned by Supreme Court.  (cached copy)

  5. Lost In A Loophole: Foreigners Who Are on the Losing End of a Custody Battle in Japan Don't Have Much Recourse; Los Angeles Times, September 19, 1996.  Stories of Walter Benda, David Brian Thomas, Dale Martin and Charles Talley.  Describes how lack of a "parent of Japanese child" visa gives an abducting spouse power, how a hanko can be used for forgery, and quotes a Japanese Foreign Ministry official on why Japan does not need to sign the Hague Convention on International Parental Abduction.

  6. The Japanese said I no longer had a child; The Independent, July 10, 1996. Very detailed story about David Brian Thomas's loss of his son to his Japanese spouse Mikako Takezawa and her father Hajime Takezawa.

The information on this website concerns a matter of public interest, and is provided for educational and informational purposes only in order to raise public awareness of issues concerning left-behind parents. Unless otherwise indicated, the writers and translators of this website are not lawyers nor professional translators, so be sure to confirm anything important with your own lawyer.




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