Osmin Tobar, Trafficked for Overseas Adoption from Guatemala

Over 30,000 children in Guatemala were adopted internationally decades ago and learned they were trafficked for adoption.

Seeking answers

The memory of the day Osmin Tobar was taken from his mother in Guatemala has been replaying in his head like a broken record since he was seven years old.

Guatemalan authorities took him in 1997 after they allegedly received reports that he had been abused and abandoned by his mother — allegations they didn’t bother to verify. Instead, Tobar was whisked away and spent two years in a children’s home before a family in Pennsylvania adopted him.

“The biggest motivation I had to return to Guatemala was the memory of my mother,” Tobar, 30, a father of two boys, told NBC News.

As Tobar yearned to be reunited with his mother for over a decade while living in the U.S., his father, who had been separated from his mother, was trying to reverse a declaration of abandonment — the legal move that allowed the Guatemalan government to put Tobar up for international adoption without his father’s consent.

Tobar left Pennsylvania and moved to Guatemala after reconnecting with his biological parents in 2011. However, he has struggled with keeping a good relationship with both his biological and adoptive families.

Source NBC NEWS.

Listen to Osmin Tobar at the Adoption Trafficking Awareness Symposium on June 18th, 2022 at the Washington State History Museum. Get tickets here.