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Sunday 31 August 2014

Father tells of his plight to get his little boy home, nine months after he was abducted

Published 27/01/2014 | 13:07

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Patrick with Troy.
Troy

A second Irish father – who has been fighting to be reunited with his child since he was abducted to Zambia last year – has revealed his struggle to get his young child back home.

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Patrick Beary's son Troy (now aged two and a half) was snatched by his mother Elizabeth Daka during Easter last year along with Richard Quarry’s son Ethan (7). Elizabeth is the mother of both boys.

While Richard is celebrating the success story of bringing his son home after an epic road trip through Zambia and Zimbabwe earlier this month, Patrick is still without his son.

Both men travelled to Zambia last July to bring their sons back home, but Patrick says his attempts were fruitless because he doesn’t possess Troy’s passport.

Patrick told independent.ie this morning : “It’s pretty much still the same story for me. I’m in a different situation to Richard.”

“Richard had a passport – I don’t have a passport for Troy. That’s the difference. Both of us went to Zambia together in July and it was always a big problem that I didn’t have a passport.”

“In Zambia, both myself and Richard have the same rights. But in Ireland, I didn’t have full custody of Troy, so the next stage of my argument was going to be guardianship.”

“It’s been going on a long time, this drama. The only way out is to do exactly what Richard did, I know that.”

Patrick is hopeful that Ethan’s return back to Ireland will prompt his mother Elizabeth to follow him – and bring Troy with her.

Patrick told independent.ie that if he could, he would rescue his child from Zambia just like Richard did, but without a passport there would be no way to get Troy past the Zambian border.

“It’s been going on a long time, this drama. The only way out is to do exactly what Richard did, I know that.”

But he said: “It wouldn’t be easy to do what Richard did. I could have gone as far as the border, and that’s it. And I would have been forced to give Troy back.”

“It’s entirely frustrating. What Richard did is exactly what should be done.”

“Hopefully the fact that Ethan is back in Ireland might be leverage enough to get Elizabeth back in Ireland with Troy.”

“But if that’s not the case, I’ll probably start a process in Zambia like going down the legal route which will be a long, drawn-out process.”

In the mean time, Patrick is losing out on a precious period of Troy’s life when he is going through so many developmental changes.

“The first couple of years are the most important for bonding, and once they’re gone you don’t get them back, ever.”

“But it’s not about me, it’s about Troy at the end of the day. After I’ve spoken to Ethan in a day or two, that’ll determine how worried I’m going to be.”

“I speak to Troy once every two weeks. He’s only two and a half years old. He’s growing up with two different languages and his English isn’t as good because he’s now in Africa.”

While Patrick decides his next move to get his son back to Ireland, he says a lot hinges on Ethan’s report of his life in Africa.

“If I get the impression from Ethan that he never wants to go back there again, then that would definitely add a lot of urgency to it. It’s Ethan that I’d like to speak to.”

“I’ve friends and family around me. They obviously ask me a lot about what’s happening. I put up Facebook photos of him and they say he looks happy and healthy. That’s the main thing. He looks like he’s being taken care of.”

He added: “The fact that Ethan is back is leverage. There are two brothers in this and Ethan is Elizabeth’s son. So if she wants to see her son again, she’ll bring Troy back. And it’s only about fair parenting at the end of the day.”

 

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