With Father’s Day approaching, a lawyer for the New Jersey dad fighting to get his young son returned from South America says he is doing “terrible” despite a judge’s ruling that he can live with the boy unsupervised six days a week — in Brazil.
Appearing on TODAY Friday, American attorney Patricia Apy said David Goldman is staying put until his lawyers here and in Brazil are certain that this latest ruling in the years-long international custody fight will not be scuttled by an appeal by the Brazilian man claiming legal custody of 9-year-old Sean Goldman.
“This child should be with his father ... we expect it will be appealed again. To send David down there and not have him see Sean is really problematic,” Apy told TODAY co-anchor Meredith Vieira. “We’re looking for an opportunity to visit more with Sean ... We have to be sure it is actually going to happen. We have to be sure it is going to be done safely.”
Goldman and his legal team are particularly troubled by a transcript released Wednesday of Sean’s videotaped statements that he wants to remain in Brazil. Apy said the boy is not mature enough to be asked to have a role in deciding where he should live — and that he’s particularly fragile in his position at the center of an international legal dispute.
“It’s a statement that was generated by taking this child, who is 9, to a psychiatric facility, hiding five witnesses behind a mirrored wall, and taping him for about 30 to 40 minutes,” Apy said. “It is outrageous beyond all reckoning ... This goes beyond the bounds.”
Goldman’s fight began in 2004 when Sean’s mother, Bruna Bianchi, took him for a vacation to her native Brazil and never returned. She later married a Rio de Janeiro lawyer and died last year giving birth to a daughter.