Boy finally reunites with American dad in Brazil

Happy ending

Boy finally reunites with American dad in Brazil

Sean Goldman arrives at the US Consulate in Rio de Janeiro hugs his Brazilian stepfather Joao Paulo Lins e Silva on Thursday. AP

Sean Goldman was brought into the US consulate by several of his Brazilian relatives, making it into the compound’s front door as scores of reporters and cameramen tried to get close. His father, David Goldman of Tinton Falls, New Jersey, was waiting for him inside.

Sean cried as his stepfather and family lawyer tried to get him through the scrum of journalists in front of the consulate. Guards had to violently push back photographers and TV cameramen.

The boy carried his luggage and wore a yellow shirt with the Brazilian flag and Olympic rings underneath.

He didn’t say anything as he was led from a black SUV across the street to the consulate. His maternal grandmother, Silvana Bianchi, said in tears that “this is a very difficult moment.”

Bianchi wanted to travel with Sean to the United States to help in the transition, but family lawyer Sergio Tostes said her wish was denied by Goldman. Tostes said he had asked the Brazilian government to intervene but authorities said the father’s decision had to be respected.

Bianchi and the rest of the boy’s Brazilian relatives left the consulate about an hour after delivering him.

Goldman’s New Jersey-based lawyer, Patricia Apy, criticised how the turnover was conducted.

“Unfortunately, the Brazilian family, rather than have the handoff take place in a garage, which would have been secure, parked away and walked him through the press, which only serves to make the situation more stressful for the child,” Apy said.

Goldman won a big legal victory late on Tuesday when Brazil’s chief justice upheld a lower court’s ruling that ordered Sean be returned to his father.

The father and son were expected to fly back to Goldman’s home within hours.
Sean has lived in Brazil since Goldman’s ex-wife, Bruna Bianchi, brought him to her native country for what was supposed to be a two-week vacation in 2004.

Bianchi stayed, divorced Goldman and remarried, and Goldman began legal efforts to get back Sean. In 2008, Bianchi died in childbirth.

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