Karen Abigail Monahan is ten years old and lives with her mom and dad, Jennifer and Timothy Monahan, in Liberty, Missouri, a suburb of Kansas City. She is likely in the fifth grade and undoubtedly knows that she was adopted from Guatemala.
Someday soon, this little girl will sit at a computer and type her own name, or that of her parents, into a search engine and find a tale of mystery, intrigue and an international child trafficking scandal that contributed to the end of American adoptions from Guatemala.
Karen will discover that it is believed she was born Anyelí Liseth Hernández Rodríguez to Loyda Rodriguez and her husband, Dayner Hernández, a middleclass couple from Guatemala, who had two other children (Karen/Anyeli’s full brother and sister) at the time she was born and abducted. She will find pictures of herself and photos of her tearful Guatemalan mother, who along with her father, immediately and repeatedly reported that their child was abducted from the front yard of their home on November 3, 2006. She will discover that the Guatemalan government determined after extensive investigation that she was kidnapped from her family and that her visa was issued illegally when she was brought to America in 2008.
Her mother, Loyda, she may discover, took part in a hunger strike to bring attention to her case and to other kidnappings perpetrated to create adoptions from Guatemala, and neither her mother nor her father ever stopped trying to have her returned, or at the very least, to see her.
Will seeing headlines like this and reading the stories like this make her feel as one would feel seeing oneself on a milk carton? Will she have been told, or perhaps heard, rumors at school or around town? She was four when she came to America. Will she have any childhood memories that will be triggered by seeing her baby pictures?
If Karen/Anyeli doesn’t uncover the story as a curious teen, she likely will as a young adult when she applies for a driver’s license with post-911 restrictions in place. Karen’s American-issued amended birth certificate – like that of all adoptees – will indicate that she was born to her adoptive parents. The filing date on her U.S. birth certificate, however, will be four years subsequent to her birth, when she was adopted and came to America. The delay in filing date raises red flags for adoptees.
In her case, there is no telling what will happen next being that her Guatemalan birth certificate and passport were nullified. She may never be able to obtain a passport and thus would not be able to travel to her country of birth, or visit her Guatemalan family, and return.
The Guatemala government is demanding her return, and the U.S. government has responded with silence. In violation of international treaties, The State Department has failed to insist on DNA tests to prove or disprove the kidnapping allegat
Karen/Anyeli will be able to read the details of her case in many online accounts, including most recently, “The Limits of Jurisdiction” by Erin Siegal McIntyre, who combed “over five thousand documents obtained and leaked from various sources in Guatemala, interviewed dozens of parties, and gained insight from criminal investigators and experts associated with the case in both countries.”
She will learn that her American adoptive parents found her through Florida adoption agency Celebrate Children International (CCI) and were aware of problems from the very start, and that the person who claimed to be Anyeli’s Guatemalan mother turned out not to exist. She will learn that:
“Loyda Rodríguez’s DNA was compared to the DNA sample kept on file for Karen, drawn in July 2007. Two independent labs, one in Spain and one in the US, sent their findings back to Guatemala. Both agreed: Rodríguez and ‘Karen’ tested 99.98% positive for a maternal match.”
For the rest of the article by Mirah Riben visit here.