Japan Times “Richard Cory” on child custody woes part 2: Who abducts wins


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As part two to yesterday’s excerpt, here’s how Richard Cory managed to save one of his children from a cheating, insane, abusive mom — by simply abducting her. Too bad for the other two. Godspeed. Arudou Debito in transit

Behind the facade of family law
Having been reunited with his daughter, Richard Cory faces a tougher battle for custody of his sons
By Richard Cory
The Japan Times Tuesday, Sept. 28, 2010

(excerpt): Look at my case (and what the judge wrote in her custody ruling in July). My wife had admitted to the following:

• More than three years of ongoing adultery (“The reason for the breakup of the marriage was the respondent’s adultery”); Giving large sums of money (¥7.7 million) to her lover to help him pay off his gambling debt (“Respondent lent a large sum of money to her colleague”);

• Taking my children on dates to bet on horse racing;

• Being currently on medication for various disorders (“Respondent became mentally ill and started seeing a doctor in or around January 2010 and worried about her insufficient communication with the children”);

• Physically abusing her own spouse and children (“Respondent attacked petitioner . . . and used physical power that cannot be justified as discipline against the children”).

Her own daughter fled from her after being abducted, and then testified against her. Moreover, my wife did not even petition for custody of the children until four months after I filed for divorce and custody. I even submitted a video showing my wife with not one of the bruises or injuries she claimed to have sustained the day before the video was taken. And we even had eyewitness testimony of her trying to injure herself. Could my case be any stronger?

Nevertheless, when the judge awarded me physical custody of my daughter, she also awarded physical custody of the boys to their mother. The reason: “There’s no big problem (with the boys staying where they are).”

Based on such reasoning, you can bet the bank that this judge would have awarded custody of all three children to my wife had I not been able to rescue one. And the judge would probably have given me custody of them all had they all been able to get free.

Japan’s family court is simply a facade designed to make an unevolved system appear civilized.

Let’s not kid ourselves. In Japan, “possession of the children” trumps the “best interests of the children” every time, particularly when the “best interests of the children” are never even addressed. And when you have a country that is pouring great sums of money into a system that shuffles children off to hidden locations whenever a parent makes an unverified DV claim, the state, in essence, becomes complicit in the abduction of the children…

Full article at http://search.japantimes.co.jp/cgi-bin/fl20100928zg.html

6 comments on “Japan Times “Richard Cory” on child custody woes part 2: Who abducts wins

  • Are there groups involved with this problem domestically? Between Japanese spouses? If so, are they in support of the Hague’s Convention?

  • treblekickeresq says:

    Did anyone else find the one-sided nature of the story and the tone (for example calling Japan a “primitive uncivilized society”) inappropriate for a newspaper? I’m not denying there are serious problems with Japanese family law. But there would have been much more better ways to inform readers than publishing 2 rants by an understandably outraged father. I would hate to have been the editor reading the first drafts.

  • this story is both heart-breaking and frightening. i am at a total loss and can only say i am glad this cannot happen to me as our children are on their own.

  • John (Yokohama) says:

    On a related note:


    “U.S. lawmakers pressure Japan on child custody rights
    Thursday 30th September, 05:47 AM JST

    The U.S. House of Representatives turned up the pressure Wednesday on Japan, strongly urging Tokyo to return immediately half-Japanese children that lawmakers say have been kidnapped from their American parents.

    The House voted overwhelmingly for a nonbinding resolution that “condemns the abduction and retention” of children held in Japan “in violation of their human rights and United States and international law.”

    The resolution, which passed 416 to 1, also calls for Japan to allow Americans to visit their children and for Tokyo to join a 1980 international convention on child abduction that would allow for the quick return of the children to America.

    Democratic Rep Jim Moran told reporters that the resolution sends a strong signal to Japan that the U.S. Congress “is watching and expecting action.”

    Republican Rep. Chris Smith said, “Americans are fed up with our friend and ally Japan and their pattern of noncooperation.”

    The Japanese Embassy said in a statement that Japan is sympathetic to the plight of children caught in custody battles between Japanese and American citizens and “is continuing to make sincere efforts to deal with this issue from the standpoint that the welfare of the child should be of the utmost importance.”

    The United States often calls Japan its lynchpin ally in Asia, and tens of thousands of U.S. troops are stationed in Japan. But Japan’s stance on custody rights has been a source of friction. U.S. lawmakers say that at least 121 American children currently are being held in Japan.

    Japanese law allows only one parent to have custody in cases of divorce, usually the mother. Activists say the court system in Japan is tilted against fathers and foreigners.

    Assistant Secretary of State Kurt Campbell, the top U.S. diplomat for East Asia, told lawmakers at a hearing Wednesday that the issue is a priority, with Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton raising it in meetings with her Japanese counterpart.

    Campbell said that he would also raise the matter when he travels to Tokyo next week and that Japan should act urgently.

    “We’re going to need to see some progress on this,” Campbell said.

    Christopher Savoie, a father who was arrested last year after going to Japan in a failed attempt to reclaim his two children, joined lawmakers and other fathers at a news conference before the House vote. Japan, Savoie said, should be ashamed for keeping parents from seeing their children.

    However, the problem is not only restricted to abductions by Japanese citizens, according to William Lake, whose daughter was taken without his knowledge by his ex-wife, who is not Japanese, to Osaka.

    In several cases like Lake’s, non-Japanese parents have fled to Japan with their children so as to take advantage of permissive child custody laws that have led some to describe Japan as a ‘‘black hole’’ for abducted children, a fact that illustrates the depth and seriousness of the problems with the current system.

    ‘‘Neither I, my ex-wife, or my daughter are Japanese in any way shape or form,’’ Lake noted, adding ‘‘The Japanese government should have no say in this issue whatsoever, other than to choose what airline they’re going to send the children home on.’’

    Wire reports”

  • Darling Lover says:

    I find this to show that the system isn’t so much racist as some people where saying yesterday, but amazingly unfair all the same. I hope that this story gets more traction (not to mention action) than that hypocrite Savoie and his crocodile tears.


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