[QODLink]
Europe

Paris jails aid workers for adoption scheme

Group of six arrested in Chad in 2007 for trying to load 103 children they said were from Darfur on France-bound plane.
Last Modified: 12 Feb 2013 22:48

A Paris court has sentenced two French aid workers to two years in jail for attempting to illegally bring 103 children from Chad to France for adoption, falsely claiming they were orphans from Darfur.

Eric Breteau, who founded the Zoe's Ark charity that was involved in the failed attempt, and his partner Emilie Lelouch, were immediately detained following Tuesday's verdict. The pair were originally tried in absentia after refusing to attend court proceedings.

Another four accused were given suspended sentences ranging from six to 12 months.

The group was arrested in Chad in 2007 trying to load the children on to a plane bound for France, where they were to be adopted.

They claimed the children were orphans from the war-ravaged Darfur region in neighbouring Sudan, but Chad's government accused them of kidnapping.

It later came to be known the children were not Sudanese and most still had living relatives.

The six were sentenced to eight years of hard labour in Chad, but were later repatriated to France and had their sentences adjusted to jail time, before finally being pardoned in March 2008 by Idriss Déby, Chad's president.

They were tried in Paris on charges of acting illegally as an adoption intermediary, facilitating illegal entry of foreign minors and fraud with regard to families who had expected to receive the children.

228

Source:
AFP
Topics in this article
People
Country
City
Organisation
Featured on Al Jazeera
'Justice for All' demonstrations swell across the US over the deaths of African Americans in police encounters.
Six former Guantanamo detainees are now free in Uruguay with some hailing the decision to grant them asylum.
Disproportionately high number of Aboriginal people in prison highlights inequality and marginalisation, critics say.
Nearly half of Canadians have suffered inappropriate advances on the job - and the political arena is no exception.
Featured
Women's rights activists are demanding change after Hanna Lalango, 16, was gang-raped on a bus and left for dead.
Buried in Sweden's northern forest, Sorsele has welcomed many unaccompanied kids who help stabilise a town exodus.
A look at the changing face of North Korea, three years after the death of 'Dear Leader'.
While some fear a Muslim backlash after café killings, solidarity instead appears to be the order of the day.
Victims spared by the deadly disease are reporting blindness and other unexpected post-Ebola health issues.