Thursday, October 16, 2014

Australian Couple Discover No Genetic Link To Their Child Born Of Indian Surrogate

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An Australian couple has made the shock discovery that they have no biological connection to their child, who was born via surrogate in India.

The case is the latest in a string of international surrogacy controversies, with three new cases revealed in a new report into surrogacy by the Attorney-General’s office.

The couple, who chose not to be named, have come forward after the report exposed a range of startling problems within Indian surrogacy, according to Woman's Day.

The report reveals that another Australian citizen discovered he had no genetic link to the twin girls he ‘commissioned' through a surrogate in India, due to a crucial IVF error.

It was agreed that the babies would be conceived using the father’s sperm and a donor egg, but a paternity test showed the Australian is not the twins' biological father.

In a third case, an Australian couple is in custody of a child born via India surrogate who is not be their genetic offspring, according to the report.

Indian surrogacy is under the spotlight due to the confirmation a baby born by an Indian surrogate was abandoned by its Australian parents in 2012.

It’s understood the couple left their child in India due to its gender, but returned to Australia with the baby’s twin.

Australian Family Court Chief Justice Diana Bryant said in a statement that she was told by Australian embassy officials in New Delhi that the couple's decision to leave the baby they paid an Indian surrogate to deliver was based on its gender. The twins were a brother and sister. Bryant did not know what gender the parents wanted.

"They explained that when the commissioning parents were advised that twins were born, the commissioning parents refused to agree to take both children," Bryant said.

"It is believed that they only wanted one child as they already had one and wanted one of a different gender," she added.

The Australian High Commission in New Delhi delayed giving the Australian parents a visa for the wanted child while they tried to persuade them to take both children, Bryant said.

A person claiming to be a friend later took the unwanted that baby. But embassy officials doubted the person was a friend and suspected money had changed hands, Bryant said.

Australia's Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade said the High Commission's role had been limited to assessing the parents' application for citizenship and a passport for the chosen twin.

"As the parents decided to apply for citizenship for only one child and consequently the other child was not granted Australian citizenship, India became responsible for the welfare of the other child and adoption arrangements became a matter for its legal system," the department said in a statement.

"Since this case, the Indian Government has tightened controls on commercial surrogacy arrangements in India," it added, without elaborating.

The news comes only two months after it was revealed West Australian couple David Farnell and his wife Wendy allegedly abandoned Mr Farnell's biological child Gammy, who was born with Down Syndrome to an Indonesian surrogate mother.

The Farnell's controversially took Gammy's healthy twin sister Pipah home with them while Gammy was adopted by his birth mother Pattharamon 'Goy' Janbua.

Further controversy ensued when it was revealed Mr Farnell was a former convicted paedophile.

Gammy's story soon led to demands that Australia's surrogacy laws be reviewed while the Thai government discussed banning commercial surrogacy altogether.

Consular officials told her the abandoned child was passed to another family.

'But they expressed to me their great concern that in fact money had changed hands,' she said.

'If that's true, that's basically trafficking children.'

Via Mailonline

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