US Shatto family absent at adoption annulment hearing in Russia
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PSKOV, December 20 (RAPSI) – The legal representatives of the Shatto family and the Shattos themselves failed to appear at a court session in the Pskov Region, Russia, which heard a suit to annul the adoption of Kirill Kuzmin, the younger brother of Maxim, who died in January, RIA Novosti reports from the court.
Maxim Kuzmin died at the age of 3 while playing in the backyard of his Texas (U.S.) home on January 21.
Alan and Laura Shatto adopted Maxim Kuzmin and his biological half-brother Kirill Kuzmin from the same orphanage in western Russia. Since the boy's death, his brother has remained with his adoptive parents.
The suit was filed by the Pskov Region Social Security Department after a criminal case was opened to investigate the death of Maxim and alleged violations by social agencies during the adoption of the Kuzmin brothers.
Children's Rights Commissioner Pavel Astakhov announced the death of the boy on February 18. He tweeted that the child had been given powerful "psychotropic substances," and that he was badly beaten before he died in a hospital on January 21.
On March 1, Texas authorities announced that the boy's death was not criminal, based on the autopsy results. The four doctors who reviewed the results ruled the death accidental.
After that, the Pskov Regional Social Security Department filed a lawsuit against the Shattos to revoke the adoption of Maxim’s two-year-old brother, Kirill. Experts believe there are legal grounds for granting the annulment.