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*UPDATE* Two Face Charges Over 4-year Old Blond-haired Girl Found in Gypsy Camp 

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Old 10-25-2013, 12:58 AM
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Re: *UPDATES* American Couple: Is Mystery Girl Found in Rome Our Daughter?

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Originally Posted by IC10021 View Post
Now I am confused -- there seem to be two little girls with similar light/blonde coloring found to be "mismatched" with Roma people claiming them as "daughters". This one is 4 years old, found in Greece; the latest one is 7 years old, found in Ireland. (I could be wrong; this is confusing.) Will try to follow up w another thread-post.

Here ya go!!


<****** src="http://embed.newsinc.com/Single/******.html?WID=1&VID=25282246&freewheel=69016&sit esection=selatimes&width=600&height=400" height="400" width="600" scrolling="no" frameborder="0" marginwidth="0" marginheight="0"></******>
I hope they find Madeleine McCann, too

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Old 10-25-2013, 05:37 PM
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**MYSTERY SOLVED**

Mystery Solved: DNA Tests Confirm Bulgarian Roma Woman is Her Mother

Stoyan Nenov / Reuters

Sasha Ruseva, 35, may be the biological mother of the blond girl known as, "Maria," who was found in Greek Roma camp last week, according to her grandmother.

By Carlo Angerer and Henry Austin, NBC News

NIKOLAEVO, Bulgaria — The family of a Bulgarian couple whose DNA matched with the mystery girl known as, “Maria,” on Friday, told NBC News they were, “happy,” she had been identified and they hoped she would be home soon.

"I'm happy and I hope that the kid will come home, but nobody knows when," Angel Rusev, the girl’s uncle said. "We're going to take care of her and all the other kids."

DNA samples taken from his brother Atanas Rusev, 36, and the girl’s mother, Sasha Ruseva, 35, was shown to match with the little girl.

“Analysis proved that Sasha Ruseva is the biological mother of the girl named Maria," Bulgarian Interior Ministry Chief Commissioner, Svetlozar Lazarov told reporters. "It also showed Atanas Rusev as the biological father.”

Some of Sasha Ruseva's children pose for photographers on Friday. Their great-grandmother strongly believes Maria is their sister.

He added that pretrial proceedings had been initiated to discover whether the mother had given her consent for her daughter to be sold abroad.

Back in Greece, a spokesman for the Smile of a Child Charity that is looking after Maria, told NBC News that the youngster was doing “very well” as she had been discharged from hospital and was now living in one of their homes.

“She was released yesterday from the hospital and she was transferred to one of our homes," said Panagiotis Pardalis. "Our people and social workers are taking care of her.”

He added that charity only had temporary custody of the girl and the decision about her future would be made later by a Greek court.

“Our role is to take care of Maria according to the order of the prosecutor. The decision about what happens to her is made by the court,” he said.

In an earlier interview with NBC News, Maria’s great-grandmother Zineb Kasimova, told NBC News that Ruseva regretted leaving the girl in Greece.

"They left the kid because they have no money at all," the family matriarch who has about 50 grandchildren and great-grandchildren, said. "When the mother saw the child on TV, she went to the neighbors and told them, 'I was a fool to leave the kid there'.'"

Speaking at her mud-floored dwelling, Kasimova added: "If she doesn't take her home, then I will go there and I will take her home because I'm her great-grandmother."

Ruseva herself told Bulgarian TV on Thursday that she had once left a baby behind in Greece after working there.

"I didn't take any money," Ruseva said. "I just didn't have enough money to feed her. I intended to go back and take my child home, but meanwhile I gave birth to two more kids, so I was not able to go.”

Eleftheria Dimolpoulou, 39, and Christos Salis, 40, are seen with Maria. DNA tests show the girl is not their biological daughter.

Bulgarian police later questioned Ruseva and her husband whose DNA was later shown to match with samples taken by the Greek police from the little girl.

"The prosecutors' office has opened a pre-trial investigation against, [Sasha Ruseva], for agreeing to sell her child on an undisclosed date in 2009 in Greece," the regional prosecutor's office in the southern town of Kazanlak said in a statement. "The probe is opened following checks linked to the female child with the name Maria in Greece."

Ruseva and her husband both vanished after being interviewed by investigators, police told NBC News on Friday.

From their small shacks next to an unpaved road in Nikolaevo, neighbors told NBC News that the couple have nine children -- including four who are blond and fair-skinned like Maria.

She was found living with Christos Salis, 39, and Eleftheria Dimopoulou, 40, last week in a Roma settlement near Farsala, Greece.

They have been charged with abduction and procuring false documents. Magistrates ordered that Salis and Dimopoulou be held in custody until they face trial.

The couple who were found with a 4-year-old blonde girl named Maria who's unrelated to them have explained how they obtained custody, telling authorities that a prostitute handed them the girl to care for. NBC's Michelle Kosinski reports.

Their lawyer Marietta Palavra told NBC News earlier this week that Maria's real mother is a Bulgarian Roma prostitute who was looking for a home for the unwanted baby among local Roma families in Greece.

Meanwhile, Greek police arrested a couple on Wednesday for buying a baby Roma girl from her mother for 4,000 euros, ($5,500), in March because they could not have children of their own.

"The baby has been with them since then while they sought ways to legalize it," police said.

They were due to appear before a prosecutor on Friday.

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Old 10-25-2013, 11:50 PM
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Re: Two Face Charges Over 4-year Old Blond-haired Girl Found in Gypsy Camp

Tests prove Roma couple are mystery girl's parents


By VESELIN TOSHKOV and NICHOLAS PAPHITIS, Associated Press
Updated 3:49 pm, Friday, October 25, 2013




In this undated photo released by charity ''The Smile of the Child'' shows a 4-year-old girl at an unknown location. Greek authorities on Friday, Oct. 18, 2013 have requested international assistance to identify the four-year-old girl found living in a Gypsy camp with a couple arrested and charged with abducting her from her birth parents. A police statement says the child was located Wednesday, Oct. 17, 2013 near the town of Farsala, central Greece, during a nationwide crackdown on illegal activities in Gypsy camps. Photo: STR, AP


______



(Main text of the story update is follows below, after a very nice series of captioned photos of Maria's biological family and the immediate area of their home in Nikolaevo, Bulgaria .

This incident has generated several significant side stories, including:

--> The world-wide publicity of the suspected kidnapping by Roma people in Greece triggered several hysterical reactions elsewhere in Europe. For example:
  • In Ireland, for example, authorities abruptly removed blonde children from their home in a Roma family, based on suspicions of kidnapping and their observations that the children bore dissimilar appearances from the darker-colored adults. Embarassed Irish authorities quickly reunited the children with the adults when DNA evidence revealed the parental relationship to the children. See: Ireland Vows to Review Cases of Roma Children Removed From Their Families, NYT, Oct. 24, 2013.

  • Elsewhere, "...anti-Roma sentiment appears to be spreading. Earlier this week, Serbian news media reported that over the weekend a group of skinheads in Novi Sad, in central Serbia, tried to abduct a Roma child in front of his house because his skin was fairer than that of his father, Stefan Nikolic.", according to the New York Times.
  • Likewise, the child's biological mother continues to be accused of prostitution and "selling" her child to the Greek family while the Greek family (as well as neighbors) continue to be investigated for child trafficking and other criminal activities. Neighbors in the Greek village have described how Maria's family had four or more blonde children when they lived there at the time that Maria was born. They also describe how Maria was given to the Greek mother "freely" to be cared for with an understanding that her biological mother would always be able to take her back when she was better able to provide for her.


--> Hightened awareness of Roma culture and its people world-wide as well as how the Roma have been broadly mistrusted and misunderstood throughout Europe over centuries. These alarming incidents and unfounded accusations that the Roma engage in child abduction are viewed as current examples of the ongoing persecution of Roma people and baldly deemed nothing more than modern-day racial profiling. See: For Roma, Fears of Kidnapping in Europe Only Mirror Their Own, NYT Oct 25, 2013. http://www.nytimes.com/2013/10/25/wo...ef=todayspaper
" .....the Roma say that it is they who now live in fear — of having their children snatched for no reason other than their cultural identity or skin color. The cases, they say, have helped fan a sometimes violent backlash against the roughly 11 million Roma scattered across Europe. In an era of budget cutbacks and high unemployment, politicians on both the left and the right have singled out the Roma as emblematic of the problems of illegal immigration and have questioned whether they can ever be integrated.

“Imagine if the situation were reversed and the children were brown and the parents were white, would they have ever been taken away?” said Dezideriu Gergely, the executive director of the European Roma Rights Center, based in Budapest. “The most dangerous consequence of the hysteria is that now we have to live in fear that our children can be removed from us on the basis of a wrong perception. No one should be profiled on the basis of their ethnicity.”
)

Human rights campaigners have warned against resurrecting "age-old myths portraying Roma as child-abductors" http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worl...rejudices.html
______





Mother Sasha Ruseva holds two-year-old Penka, one of her ten children, whom she claims is albino with father Atanas, right, as they talk to journalists in the town of Nikolaevo , Bulgaria, Thursday Oct. 24, 2013. DNA tests have confirmed that a Bulgarian Roma couple living in the impoverished village with their nine other children are the biological parents of the girl found in Greece with another Roma couple, authorities said Friday. Genetic profiles of Sasha Ruseva, 35, and her husband, Atanas, matched that of Maria, Interior Ministry official Svetlozar Lazarov said Friday. Ruseva says she gave birth to a baby girl four years ago in Greece while working as an olive picker but gave the child away because she was too poor to care for her. She since has had two more children after Maria. Maria has been in a charity's care since authorities raided a Roma settlement in Greece last week and found she was not related to the Greek Roma couple she was living with. BULGARIA OUT Photo: BGNES, AP




Mother Sasha Ruseva holds two-year-old Penka, one of her ten children, whom she claims is albino talks to journalists in the town of Nikolaevo , Bulgaria, Thursday Oct. 24, 2013. DNA tests have confirmed that a Bulgarian Roma couple living in the impoverished village with their nine other children are the biological parents of the girl found in Greece with another Roma couple, authorities said Friday. Genetic profiles of Sasha Ruseva, 35, and her husband, Atanas, matched that of Maria, Interior Ministry official Svetlozar Lazarov said Friday. Ruseva says she gave birth to a baby girl four years ago in Greece while working as an olive picker but gave the child away because she was too poor to care for her. She since has had two more children after Maria. Maria has been in a charity's care since authorities raided a Roma settlement in Greece last week and found she was not related to the Greek Roma couple she was living with. BULGARIA OUT Photo: BGNES, AP




Minka Ruseva, daughter of Sasha Ruseva, left, laughs in a Roma neighborhood of Nikolaevo, Bulgaria, Friday, Oct. 25, 2013. Sasha Ruseva, a Bulgarian Roma woman from this town, is under investigation by Bulgarian authorities trying to find out if she is the mother of a suspected abduction victim in neighboring Greece known as "Maria" whose case has triggered a global search for her real parents. Photo: Vadim Ghirda, AP





Minka Ruseva, daughter of Sasha Ruseva, left, dances along with other children in a Roma neighborhood of Nikolaevo, Bulgaria, Friday, Oct. 25, 2013. Sasha Ruseva, a Bulgarian Roma woman from this town, is under investigation by Bulgarian authorities trying to find out if she is the mother of a suspected abduction victim in neighboring Greece known as "Maria" whose case has triggered a global search for her real parents. Photo: Vadim Ghirda, AP





A Bulgarian Roma child stands next to a pig in a Roma neighborhood of Nikolaevo, Bulgaria, Friday, Oct. 25, 2013. Sasha Ruseva, a Bulgarian Roma woman from this town, is under investigation by Bulgarian authorities trying to find out if she is the mother of a suspected abduction victim in neighboring Greece known as "Maria" whose case has triggered a global search for her real parents. Photo: Vadim Ghirda, AP





Bulgarian Roma children play with bicycles in a Roma neighborhood of Nikolaevo, Bulgaria, Friday, Oct. 25, 2013. Sasha Ruseva, a Bulgarian Roma woman from this town, is under investigation by Bulgarian authorities trying to find out if she is the mother of a suspected abduction victim in neighboring Greece known as "Maria" whose case has triggered a global search for her real parents. Photo: Vadim Ghirda, AP



A Bulgarian Roma girl eats in a Roma neighborhood of Nikolaevo, Bulgaria, Friday, Oct. 25, 2013. Sasha Ruseva, a Bulgarian Roma woman from this town, is under investigation by Bulgarian authorities trying to find out if she is the mother of a suspected abduction victim in neighboring Greece known as "Maria" whose case has triggered a global search for her real parents. Photo: Vadim Ghirda, AP




A Bulgarian Roma girl smiles holding a toddler on her back in a Roma neighborhood of Nikolaevo, Bulgaria, Friday, Oct. 25, 2013. Sasha Ruseva, a Bulgarian Roma woman from this town, is under investigation by Bulgarian authorities trying to find out if she is the mother of a suspected abduction victim in neighboring Greece known as "Maria" whose case has triggered a global search for her real parents. Photo: Vadim Ghirda, AP



Minka Ruseva, daughter of Sasha Ruseva, sits next to a boy in front of the Rusev family house in a Roma neighborhood of Nikolaevo, Bulgaria, Friday, Oct. 25, 2013. Sasha Ruseva, a Bulgarian Roma woman, is under investigation by Bulgarian authorities trying to find out if she is the mother of a suspected abduction victim in neighboring Greece known as "Maria" whose case has triggered a global search for her real parents. Photo: Vadim Ghirda, AP




A Bulgarian Roma child smiles standing in the doorway of a house in a Roma neighborhood of Nikolaevo, Bulgaria, Friday, Oct. 25, 2013. Sasha Ruseva, a Bulgarian Roma woman from this town, is under investigation by Bulgarian authorities trying to find out if she is the mother of a suspected abduction victim in neighboring Greece known as "Maria" whose case has triggered a global search for her real parents. Photo: Vadim Ghirda, AP



Minka Ruseva, daughter of Sasha Ruseva, throws a bicycle tyre in a Roma neighborhood of Nikolaevo, Bulgaria, Friday, Oct. 25, 2013. Sasha Ruseva, a Bulgarian Roma woman, is under investigation by Bulgarian authorities trying to find out if she is the mother of a suspected abduction victim in neighboring Greece known as "Maria" whose case has triggered a global search for her real parents. Photo: Vadim Ghirda, AP





A Bulgarian Roma woman holds a broom while standing in a Roma neighborhood of Nikolaevo, Bulgaria, Friday, Oct. 25, 2013. Sasha Ruseva, a Bulgarian Roma woman, is under investigation by Bulgarian authorities trying to find out if she is the mother of a suspected abduction victim in neighboring Greece known as "Maria" whose case has triggered a global search for her real parents. Photo: Vadim Ghirda, AP



Minka Ruseva, daughter of Sasha Ruseva, covers her face in a Roma neighborhood of Nikolaevo, Bulgaria, Friday, Oct. 25, 2013. Sasha Ruseva, a Bulgarian Roma woman, is under investigation by Bulgarian authorities trying to find out if she is the mother of a suspected abduction victim in neighboring Greece known as "Maria" whose case has triggered a global search for her real parents. Photo: Vadim Ghirda, AP





A Bulgarian Roma girl cries holding cards in a Roma neighborhood of Nikolaevo, Bulgaria, Friday, Oct. 25, 2013. Sasha Ruseva, a Bulgarian Roma woman, is under investigation by Bulgarian authorities trying to find out if she is the mother of a suspected abduction victim in neighboring Greece known as "Maria" whose case has triggered a global search for her real parents. Photo: Vadim Ghirda, AP


__________

NIKOLAEVO, Bulgaria (AP) — The mystery is solved — but the future of the young girl known only as Maria is still uncertain.

DNA tests have confirmed that a Bulgarian Roma couple living in an impoverished village with their nine other children are the biological parents of the girl found in Greece with another Roma couple, authorities said Friday.

Genetic profiles of Sasha Ruseva, 35, and her 37-year-old husband, Atanas, matched that of Maria, Bulgarian Interior Ministry official Svetlozar Lazarov said Friday.

By late Friday, the couple had not returned to their home that was surrounded by local and international reporters after the news was announced, and police said their whereabouts were unknown to them.

Three of the couple's youngest children were taken to a shelter for temporary care, said Diana Kaneva, director of social services for the central Stara Zagora region.

Ruseva had said she gave birth to a baby girl four years ago in Greece while working there as an olive picker but gave the child away because she was too poor to care for her. She since has had two more children after Maria.

Maria has been in a charity's care since authorities raided a settlement of Roma, also known as Gypsies, in Greece last week and found she was not related to the Greek Roma couple she was living with.

Her discovery triggered a global search for her parents, fears of possible child trafficking and interest from authorities dealing with missing children cases in Poland, France, the United States and elsewhere.

Human rights groups also have raised concerns that the news coverage about Maria and the actions taken by authorities were fueling racist sentiment against the European Union's Gypsy minority, who number around 6 million.

The Bulgarian prosecutor's office and Greek authorities were "seeking clarification on whether the mother agreed to sell the child," the Interior Ministry said in a statement.

It wasn't clear if Maria had been told who her real parents are. The Greek charity Smile of the Child, which has been looking after her, would not comment on the case.

Social services director Kaneva, after visiting the Ruseva home, said the child would likely be returned to Bulgaria for adoption.

"Maria will first be brought to a family crisis center, and after they (authorities) will seek for suitable foster family," she said.

The Rusevs and their other children live in a dilapidated, mud-floored house outside the remote Bulgarian town of Nikolaevo, 280 kilometers (175 miles) east of the capital, Sofia.

The Roma quarter in the town houses some 2,000 people. Most are jobless, living in extreme poverty, trying to stay warm in shabby houses. Children played Friday in mud-covered streets as pigs, cats and hens ambled by.

Minka Ruseva, a 14-year-old who is one of the Rusev family's children, stood in front of their dilapidated two-room house. Minka said she saw pictures of Maria on TV and thought she was her sister.

"I like her very much. She looks very much like me, and I want her back home. We will take care of her, and I can help my mother," she said.

Stoyan Todorov, a neighbor of the Rusevs, complained of the hardships that he and his family face every day. He said Bulgarian authorities do not care about helping the Roma and come "only on the eve of elections, hoping to get our votes."

"Look how we are living in total misery," he continued. "Years ago, a man was murdered in our neighborhood and nobody paid attention. Now there are crowds of concerned people here because of one girl."

As he spoke, he pointed at the scores of reporters from across Europe who had descended on the remote area.

"The truth is that we do not have the money to look after our kids," Todorov said.

Greek officials, fearing that Maria's 2009 birth record contained false information, have ordered a nationwide check of all Greek birth records in the last six years to ferret out welfare fraud or other irregularities.

The Greek Roma couple, now in pre-trial detention, have been charged with allegedly abducting Maria and committing document fraud. They told authorities they had received Maria after an informal adoption and their lawyer said Friday they planned to seek legal custody of the girl.

Under Greek law, child abduction charges can include cases where a minor is voluntarily given away by its parents.

"We are very, very happy with this outcome, because we have proved what we said from the outset. ... The adoption, as it happened, was not of a legal nature but it was not abduction," the Greek couple's lawyer, Costas Katsavos, told The Associated Press.

"Now, as the birth mother has been found, we will ask to gain — through legitimate processes — custody of little Maria, whom the family truly sees as its own child."

At the Gypsy camp in Farsala, central Greece, where Maria was found, residents said the couple had been vindicated.

"They are saying the woman stole the girl. She didn't steal her. The Bulgarian gave the child to her. ... We've had Maria here for five years," neighbor Christina Pavlos said.

___

Paphitis reported from Athens, Greece. Konstantin Testorides in Skopje, Macedonia; Derek Gatopoulos in Athens, Greece; and AP Television staff in Farsala, central Greece contributed.

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Old 12-20-2013, 05:29 PM
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Re: *UPDATE* Two Face Charges Over 4-year Old Blond-haired Girl Found in Gypsy

Does anyone have updates on this case? I tried searching and seems like most news on it is from October, when it happened. I wonder if the parents ever resurfaced, if i read right they were missing after reporters were at thier house right?

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Old 12-20-2013, 06:10 PM
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Re: *UPDATE* Two Face Charges Over 4-year Old Blond-haired Girl Found in Gypsy

Let's hope all those kids get taken from her.

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Old 12-20-2013, 06:33 PM
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**Little Maria Put In Bulgarian Foster Care**

This is the last thing I found, shinycatcreations.

http://www.thedailybeast.com/article...ster-care.html

WORLD NEWS

Barbie Latza Nadeau

November 4, 2013

With the Roma couple who raised her still in jail and her biological mother absent, the girl who set off an international crisis has been put into Bulgaria’s foster care system.

Remember Maria? She’s the little blonde girl thought to be a baby, “stolen by gypsies,” after she was discovered in a Roma camp in Farsala, Greece, in October. Eleftheria Dimopoulou, 40, and Hristos Salis, 39, the couple she had been living with for at least five years, were arrested for kidnapping.

The young girl, whose birth date is still vague, was taken into foster care by the Greek child protection agency Smile of the Child. A global search for missing blonde girls ensued, prompting thousands of telephone calls from as far away as the United States and Australia. But, DNA tests eventually confirmed her biological parents as another Roma couple living in Nikalaevo, Bulgaria.

Instead of being returned to her biological or her adopted parents, Maria will now be placed in foster care in Bulgaria. As a citizen of that nation, she falls under Bulgaria’s state welfare system, not Greece’s.

Maria’s biological mother, Sasha Ruseva, was found living with her mentally-ill husband and seven children in a one-room house with mud floors and a leaky roof. Ruseva said she had left Maria, who she had originally named Stanka, with a Roma woman in Greece when the child was just seven months old because she did not have money to take her back to Bulgaria, where she had several other children.

Ruseva said she did not sell Maria to anyone, but she told police investigating the bizarre case that the woman she had left Maria with was not Dimopoulou—implying, perhaps, that Ruseva left the child with an intermediary who brokered a deal with another family, known or unknown to her.

Dimopoulou and Salis are still in jail while authorities assess just how Maria came to be their de facto daughter.

Unlike Maria’s Greek parents, who were getting state aid for more than a dozen children who were not living with them, Ruseva was only receiving aid for her biological babies. She did not register a birth or claim benefits for Maria.

Dimopoulou and Salis are still in jail while authorities assess just how Maria came to be their de facto daughter. They face charges of benefits fraud, in addition to falsification of documents. The kidnapping charge has not been dropped, but since Ruseva is not pressing kidnapping charges, the Greek court is expected to modify that to a charge relating to the acquisition of the child rather than the abduction of one.

Ruseva reportedly escaped after police threatened her with criminal charges for selling her child. She left her brood unattended and social services quickly swept in and scooped up seven of her children, undoubtedly motivated as much by the global television crews who cast a spotlight on the dire conditions of life in a Roma camp.

Since then, the police have been in touch with Ruseva, who is no longer facing criminal charges. According to Diana Kaneva, head of the Bulgarian Social Services Agency that deals with the Nikalaevo camp, Ruseva’s toddlers—aged 2 and 3—will go to one foster family while two other children, aged 6 and 7, will go with another family. Ruseva’s 15 year old daughter, who is engaged to be married, will stay in the camp with Ruseva’s relatives.

Two of her other children, aged 8 and 12, have been deemed mentally unfit and will go into a state-run facility for special needs children. Her two children over the age of 18, who both have children of their own, will remain at the camp.

Kaneva says Ruseva will not receive benefits for the children while they are in foster care. She is encouraged to visit them while she works to create a home suitable for such a large family. Police have also questioned the whereabouts of another child who they believe Ruseva birthed shortly after Maria, but whom neighbors say was also left with a Roma family somewhere in eastern Europe while Maria and her husband were working as migrant farm workers.

Kaneva says that while the children may one day be allowed to return to the camp if Ruseva can prove herself as a provider, it is unlikely that they ever will. “Once they get out, these children rarely want to go back,” Kaneva told The Daily Beast.

I wish these people knew about birth control, but, in these countries, I guess they can't afford it or don't know about.

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