A Very Special High School Graduation: Sean Goldman Graduates From Holmdel High School

By Art Gallagher

David and Sean Goldman celebrate Sean’s graduation from Holmdel High School

This time of year thousands of New Jersey families, millions throughout the nation, are celebrating a major milestone in the lives of their teen aged children as they graduate from high school.

Twice this week, Sean Goldman’s graduation from Holmdel High School was described to me as a miracle.

It’s not that Sean overcame a disability or extreme hardship–miracles that should be celebrated.  Sean was abducted by his mother, Bruna Bianchi, 14 years ago and taken to Brazil. Bianchi took Sean on what she said was a two week vacation to visit her family in Brazil, but once there, she divorced Sean’s father, David Goldman, and kept the four year old boy from his father.  A Brazilian Court granted Bianchi a divorce. A New Jersey Court granted David custody of his son.

When Bianchi died during childbirth four years later, the international child custody case should have been over, under the terms of the Hague Convention which grants custody to a surviving biological parent.  But Sean’s maternal grandparents and step-father used their wealth and political influence to thwart—temporarily as it turned out–David’s unrelenting commitment to raise his son.

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Posted: June 23rd, 2018 | Author: | Filed under: Chris Smith, Holmdel, Monmouth County News, New Jersey | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments »

Sean and David Goldman Act Passes House and Senate

Congressman Chris Smith’s International Child Abduction Bill Awaits President Obama’s Signature

Goldman bill (800x306)

Sean Goldman, 14, celebrating the passage of a child abduction bill named for him, with Congressman Chris Smith. Photo and graphic via Bring Sean Home Foundation’s facebook page

Legislation that will give the State Department tools to apply pressure on foreign government to return abducted American children that Congressman Chris Smith as been pushing through congress for five years has finally passed both the House and Senate.

The Sean and David Goldman Act first passed the House unanimously last December.   With the help of Senator Bob Menendez, Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, the bill passed the Senate with some changes on July 16. On Friday, the House passed the Senate version.

Sean Goldman, of Tinton Falls, was four years old in June of 2004 when his mother Bruna told her husband David that she was taking the boy to her native Brazil for a two week vacation to visit her parents.  Instead, Bruna divorced David in a Brazilian Court and married another man, keeping Sean in her native country.

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Posted: July 28th, 2014 | Author: | Filed under: Chris Smith, Monmouth County | Tags: , , , , , , | Comments Off on Sean and David Goldman Act Passes House and Senate

House of Representatives Unanimously Approves Smith’s International Child Abduction Act

WASHINGTON, D.C. – “Left-behind” parents came from across the country to watch as Members of the House of Representatives voted to unanimously pass a bill to help

Bindu Phillips of Plainsboro, N.J. addresses media at a Capitol Hill press conference. From left in rear are other “left-behind” parents Barton Hermer of Texas, Paul Toland of Maryland, Rep. Chris Smith, David Goldman of  N.J., Dennis Burns of Colorado, and Arvind Chawdra of N.J.

Bindu Phillips of Plainsboro, N.J. addresses media at a Capitol Hill press conference. From left in rear are other “left-behind” parents Barton Hermer of Texas, Paul Toland of Maryland, Rep. Chris Smith, David Goldman of N.J., Dennis Burns of Colorado, and Arvind Chawdra of N.J.

bring home American children abducted to overseas destinations, said Congressman Chris Smith (NJ-04), the author of the legislation and chairman of the House congressional panel which oversees human rights.

 

The bill gives us continued hope that our elected officials grasp the enormity and the severity of this ongoing injustice and pail inflicted upon these victim families torn apart because their American children have been ripped from their loving arms,” said David Goldman, of Monmouth County, N.J., who waged a five-year battle to get his son back from Brazil. He is one of the lucky parents. H.R. 3212, the “Sean and David Goldman International Child Abduction Prevention and Return Act of 2013,” passed 398-0 late Thursday.

 

Smith has held several hearings on the heartbreaking cases of  left-behind parents of American children abducted to India, Japan, Egypt, India, Brazil, Russia, England and other countries where far too few of the thousands of U.S. kids held wrongfully overseas are returned. Not all countries have signed The Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction, the standing international treaty to try to address parental abductions via a civil framework that provides for the quick return of abducted children, and access rights to both parents. Sadly, even Hague signatories, like Brazil, often don’t enforce its provisions.

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Posted: December 13th, 2013 | Author: | Filed under: Chris Smith, Congress, Press Release | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »