Documents
9/27/2011: US State Department Notice on CNA Processing Framework for U.S. Cases Under Its Authority
Today, the US Department of State released a new notice related to adoptions from Guatemala. This is sort of old news– you can read my post here from last month about this CNA resolution. Here’s what the State Department announced: “On Friday August 19, 2011, the Guatemalan Central Adoption Authority (CNA) published in the Guatemalan government’s official register a new processing framework for the limited group of pending U.S. adoption cases that are under CNA processing authority. The U.S. Department of State and the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) are in frequent communication with Guatemalan authorities to clarify how this...
8/29/11: Department of State Notice Regarding Temporary Suspension of Hague Accreditation for US Agency Working in Ecuador
Yesterday, the Department of State posted a notice related to Ecuadorian adoptions. They said that one adoption agency, Joshua Tree Adoptions, Inc., has been temporarily suspended by the Council on Accreditation for “failing to to maintain substantial compliance with the Hague accreditation standards.” The full notice is on the Department of State website; link below. From the Department of State website. Full link: http://adoption.state.gov/country_information/country_specific_alerts_notices.php?alert_notice_type=alerts&alert_notice_file=ecuador_1...
Guatemalan Organized Crime Investigators Tracked Migration Records for Sue Hedberg & CCI clients
Official orders, date July 10, 2009, from Guatemalan prosecutor Oscar Rivas from the Human Trafficking section of the Ministerio Público’s Organized Crime Unit, asking the country’s Dirección General de Migración to provide copies of electronic records tracking the movements of Timothy Monahan, Jennifer Monahan, and “Karen Abigail” Monahan in and out of Guatemala. And another official order, dated July 3, 2009, from the same Guatemalan prosecutor from the Ministerio Público’s Organized Crime Unit asks for copies of records related to the movements of “Susan Hedberg,” the director of the adoption agency Celebrate Children International. These requests don’t mean that the Monahans or...
Full Court Order on Return of Adopted Guatemalan Child “Karen Abigail”
DOCUMENTS: Full 7/29/2011 court orders from Judge Angelica Noemi Tellez Hernández in Guatemala, ordering “Karen Abigail” returned to her birthmother (19 page .pdf). Provided courtesy Fundación Sobrevivientes. Click to download (español)....
8/4/11: DNA Test Matches Adopted Child “Karen Abigail” and Guatemalan Birth Mother Loyda Rodríguez
After skimming through some of the comments on the AP article about the “Karen Abigail” situation, I know that there’s been a lot of questions pertaining to whether or not a DNA test has been done between the child in question and Loyda Rodríguez. To the best of my knowledge, the adoptive family, the Monahans, have not been cooperative. On the Guatemalan side, however, a sample of DNA from Loyda Rodríguez has been compared to that on file with US testing facility LabCorp for “Karen Abigail,” who is now in Missouri. The results? According to La Fundación de Antropología Forense Guatemala (FAFG),...
8/3/11 DOCUMENTS: Court Ruling in “Karen Abigail” Case
SOURCE: Press release, August 2, 2011, emailed to Erin Siegal from Fundación Sobrevivientes...
Under Threat of Lawsuit, Celebrate Children International becomes “Celebrate Children”
Another surprise in the latest batch of public records from the Florida Department of Children and Families: Celebrate Children International, Incorporated has shortened their name to “Celebrate Children” after another nonprofit, Children International, Incorporated, threatened them with a lawsuit. Here’s what the note in the  state of Florida’s licensing file says: “2011 Update: Celebrate Children International is currently being sued by Children International regarding infringement of name usage… 5/1/2011 Update: CCI submitted an email from their legal representative indicating that Children International is no longer seeking to have CCI change their name. Instead, Children International has agreed to allow CCI...
More surprises in latest batch of Celebrate Children International documents
The Florida Department of Children and Families provided 323 pages of new documents to me, containing the latest licensing information on the adoption agency Celebrate Children International. I’ve only begun sifting through everything, but this passage immediately jumped out at me from page 8. It’s information excerpted from a financial audit into CCI, performed by an independent Orlando-based firm. Apparently, it looks the agency was being sued to the tune of $425,000, stemming from the circumstances of a 2007 Guatemalan adoption. I have a good idea what this might be in relation to. More to come, as I make my...
6/29/11: Downloadable agency documents, “Adoption Blessings Worldwide” (part four)
Here’s the last set of documents from the Florida Department of Children and Families, related to Adoption Blessings Worldwide. Excerpt from documents Adoption Blessings Worldwide, part ten (.pdf, 113 pages) Adoption Blessings Worldwide, part eleven (.pdf, 111 pages) Adoption Blessings Worldwide, part twelve (.pdf, 94 pages) Adoption Blessings Worldwide, part thirteen (.pdf, 64 pages)  ...
Documents: Adoption Blessings Worldwide, part three
Here’s a third set of documents from Florida Department of Children and Families, related to Adoption Blessings Worldwide. Adoption Blessings Worldwide, part seven (.pdf, 93 pages) Adoption Blessings Worldwide, part eight (.pdf, 108 pages) Adoption Blessings Worldwide, part nine (.pdf, 108 pages)...
Documents: Adoption Blessings Worldwide, part two
Here’s another three bundles of documents about the now-defunct adoption agency Adoption Blessings Worldwide. The redacted data was provided to me by the Florida Department of Children and Families,  but DCF apparently forgot to redact some important personal information (bank account numbers, social security numbers). I’ve gone through these documents and blacked out financial information as well as social security numbers. DOWNLOADABLE DOCUMENTS: Adoption Blessings Worldwide, part four (.pdf, 79 pages) Adoption Blessings Worldwide, part five (.pdf, 55 pages) Adoption Blessings Worldwide, part six (.pdf, 63 pages)  ...
Documents: Adoption Blessings Worldwide
Excerpt from documents released by Florida Department of Children and Families Two adoption agencies are in my book “Finding Fernanda:” both Celebrate Children International (based in Florida) and the now-defunct  Adoption Blessings Worldwide (based in Georgia, but previously also based in Florida under the name Tedi Bear Adoptions). During my research, I filed public records requests with the state of Florida for records about Adoption Blessings Worldwide. Here’s the first batch. DOWNLOADABLE DOCUMENTS: Adoption Blessings Worldwide, part one (108 pages, .pdf) Adoption Blessings Worldwide, part two (67 pages, .pdf) Adoption Blessings Worldwide, part three (90 pages, .pdf)      ...
Open letter from Fundación Sobrevivientes to Senator Mary Landrieu
Today, I received a copy of an open letter to Senator Landrieu, written by Norma Cruz of Fundación Sobrevivientes. The first part of the letter deals with the ongoing investigation into the three girls suspected of being kidnapped for adoption:     The letter goes on to demand an investigation into the adoption agency Celebrate Children International, as well as others allegedly involved in illegal adoptions. It goes on to mention the December 2010 CICIG report, and asks Senator Landrieu for a “formal response” in order to “clarify” her position on the report’s veracity. At the end of the letter, Norma...
CCI Records, Released by DCF August 2, 2010
Here’s a set of emails from Celebrate Children International assistant director Angela Vance. DOWNLOADABLE DOCUMENTS CCI Records, Angela Vance emails (125 pages)  ...
CCI Records, Released by DCF June 15, 2010
Here’s another batch of emails, burned onto a CD and snail-mailed to me by the Florida Department of Children and Families on June 15, 2010. There are also documents related to two more investigations undertaken by Florida DCF into Celebrate Children International. Investigation #3 began after a complaint was phoned into DCF on November 7, 2008 from a CCI client worried about her adoption of a Chinese child. Investigation #4 began on October 14, 2009 when a CCI client adopting three children from Ethiopia grew concerned about the veracity of the children’s histories. This investigation is broken into three sections,...
CCI Records, Released September 2, 2010 by DCF
  On February 2, 2010, I filed another Freedom of Information Act Request with the Florida Department of Children and Families, asking for the licensing file on Celebrate Children International. On February 9, DCF sent me a 37-page .pdf with copies of CCI’s license from their founding in 2003 up until 2009. There were also some random notes and what appear to be complaints mixed in, at the end of the document bundle. Downloadable Documents Licensing File, Celebrate Children International (37 pages) Yet there were components that seemed to me missing. I interviewed a former CCI employee (and neighbor of...
CCI Records, Released by DCF Jan-March 2010
These records were released to me, batch by batch, between January 29, 2010 and March 5, 2010   DOWNLOADABLE DOCUMENTS Celebrate Children International, “Sue Emails,” Part One Celebrate Children International, “Sue Emails,” Part Two Celebrate Children International, “Sue Emails,” Part Three Celebrate Children International, “Sue Emails,” Part Four Celebrate Children International, “Sue Emails,” Part Five Celebrate Children International, “Sue Emails,” Part Six...
CCI Records, Released by DCF May 25, 2010
DOWNLOADABLE DOCUMENTS: COMPLAINT FILES Documented Complaints, Celebrate Children International, 2004 (3 pages) Documented Complaints, Celebrate Children International, 2005 (3 pages) Documented Complaints, Celebrate Children International, 2006 (16 pages) Documented Complaints, Celebrate Children International, 2008 part one (2 pages) Documented Complaints, Celebrate Children International, 2008 part two (7 pages) DOWNLOADABLE DOCUMENTS: INVESTIGATION FILES Documented Investigation #1, Celebrate Children International (191 pages) Documented Investigation #2, Celebrate Children International (173 pages) DOWNLOADABLE DOCUMENTS: LICENSING FILES Licensing Files, Celebrate Children International, 2003-2009 (35 pages) DOWNLOADABLE DOCUMENTS: EMAIL FILES Miscellaneous Emails on File, Celebrate Children International (10 pages)   The summary statement below was sent...
CCI Records, Released by DCF May 10, 2010
This set of documents was released to me on May 10, 2010 by the Florida Department of Children and Families, in response to a public records request (also known as a FOIA, or Freedom of Information Act) I filed with them. The bundles contain various documents, including email between Sue Hedberg, the director of Celebrate Children International, and her business partners in Guatemala. There’s also correspondence between CCI and clients. Names of CCI clients have been redacted by the Florida Department of Children and Families. Here’s a sample page: Translation: Sue Hedberg <sue@celebratechildren.org> wrote: “But she’s already ___’s girl, right?...
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