Tuesday, August 28, 2007
"A judge hearing arguments in a custody case over a 4-year-old Cuban girl criticized state officials Monday for saying she would be irreparably damaged simply by being taken from her foster family and returned to her father in her communist home country.
Cuban farmer Rafael Izquierdo is fighting his daughter's wealthy foster parents for custody. He allowed the girl's mother to take her to the U.S., but the woman later attempted suicide and allowed the state to take custody of the child.
Rebecca Kapusta, an attorney for Florida's Department of Children & Families, argued that the girl should be allowed to remain with former baseball agent Joe Cubas and his wife, and that the Cuban-American couple be allowed to begin adoption proceedings.
''Our experts have told the father to remove this young girl at this young age would result in permanent injury and she would never recover,'' Kapusta told Miami-Dade Circuit Judge Jeri B. Cohen.
Cohen responded, ''What you're trying to do is say that if a father wants to remove his child from placement ... that if a father does that or a mother, that constitutes prospective abuse? I have never seen anything like this in all of my years of doing dependency.''"
AP N.Y. Times Link to Article (last visited 8-28-07 NVS)