Hansen's lawsuit against Russian children's ombudsman to be heard on July 4
MOSCOW, May 28 - RAPSI. The Moscow Tverskoy District Court will resume on July 4 its hearing of a lawsuit filed by Torry Ann Hansen, the former U.S. foster mother of Artyom Savelyev, against Russian Children's Rights Commissioner Pavel Astakhov, the court told the Russian Legal Information Agency (RAPSI/rapsinews.com) on Monday.
On April 8, 2010, Hansen sent Artyom - who was then only seven years old - back to Russia with a note stating that she refused to keep him in her custody as he was mentally unstable.
The boy was sent back to Russia only half a year after his adoption. Artyom had spent his first few years in the Maritime Territory with his mother. When she was deprived of her parental rights, he was taken to live in a children's home.
The cause of the legal dispute is an article titled, "Artyom Savelyev's Foster Mother Does Not Come to Court to Testify," which was published in February on Astakhov's official website.
"In the article, Hansen was named as the boy's foster mother, although in fact she has not been his foster mother for nine months. Thus, Astakhov made a veiled accusation against her of violating Russian law," Maria Yarmush, the plaintiff's representative, said.
The delay announced by the court on Monday was due to the absence of a response from the Education Ministry. The ministry must establish if the plaintiff is still Artyoms foster mother, as the adoption has been canceled. The court also expects answers to several more questions.
Yarmush told journalists that the defendant delivered to court on Monday a reply from the World Association for Children and Parents' (WACAP), where Artyom is still listed as Hansens foster son. In the lawyers view, this is only one entity's opinion, and it must be checked for compliance with U.S. law.
The WACAP has sued the Hansen family in the Bedford District Court. The organization, which helped Hansen to adopt Artyom, wanted her to pay 27 percent of her wages to support the child.