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US Couple Guilty in Adopted Russian Son's Death
19.09.2011 12:36
US Couple Guilty in Adopted Russian Son's Death
Nathaniel (Ivan) with sister Elizabeth (Dasha)

On Friday, Michael Craver, 47, an engineer and Air Force veteran, and his wife Nanette, 55, were found guilty in involuntary manslaughter of their adobted son Nathaniel from Russia. They also were convicted of child endargement and conspiracy, but acquitted of murder charges. 

      The verdict of involuntary manslaughter carries a maximum punishment of seven years in prison. The prosecturos had been pressing for a verdict of murder, as that crime can carry the death sentence. 

      Seven-year-old Nathaniel Craver (Ivan Skorobogatov) died on August 2009 from multiple injuries and a fatal head injury that took his life. The Cravers insist their adopted son ran headlong into an indoor pellet stove the night before they found him unconscious.

      But investigators established that the child had suffered repeated beatings (over 80 bruises and injuries of which 20 left traces on his head) and that he couldn't do it by himself. However, the prosecution wasn't able to prove the parents's direct involvement in the Nataliel's death, as there was no physical or eyewitness evidence that either of them ever struck the boy. 

      Nathaniel and his twin sister Elizabeth (Dasha) were adopted by the Cravers in 2003.

      Russian children’s rights ombudsman Pavel Astakhov commented that the American couple merit the death sentence for the torture and killing of the Russian child. “Such decisions discredit the value of a child’s life,” he said.

        The ombudsman also stressed that it is very important to ratify the Russian-American adoption agreement as soon as possible to regulate the whole adoption process and to prevent such cases in the future. 

      Russian authorities say that, since 1991, at least 17 Russian children have died worldwide in domestic-violence incidents. 


Source: RIA Novosti Atlanta Journal Constitution


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Author: Julia Alieva

Tags: adoption Russian children USA   

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