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"I am stuck on Band-aid..."

Discussion in 'The Okie Corral' started by TBO, Feb 18, 2010.

  1. TBO

    TBO Why so serious? CLM

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    Band-Aid Heiress Loses Bitter Custody Fight

    (Feb. 16) -- Elizabeth Johnson, heiress to the Johnson & Johnson fortune, lost a bitter and often bizarre four-year battle with her ex-boyfriend Tuesday when New York's highest court ruled that her adoption of a Cambodian orphan should be voided.

    The court affirmed an appellate court's decision in 2007 that because her ex-partner, Dr. Lionel Bissoon, had already legally adopted the boy in Cambodia, her own later attempt to adopt him in secret in New York was invalid.

    According to Tuesday's decision, Johnson also did not inform the court of a recent stay in rehab for substance abuse when she filed for adoption.

    Johnson, 60, the aunt of the recently deceased heiress Casey Johnson and sister of New York Jets owner Woody Johnson, has been fighting with Bissoon over the adoptive status of the child, William, whom she first encountered shortly after he was abandoned in a Cambodian village in 2003. At the time the heiress was involved with Bissoon, 48, a Trinidad-born weight-loss and anti-aging doctor with a wealthy Manhattan clientele. The case attracted widespread media attention.

    Johnson and Bissoon originally planned to adopt William, then known as Rath Chan, together. Johnson reportedly chose the child for her and Bissoon to adopt because she thought he looked so much like Bissoon.

    Complications ensued over adoption procedures between the United States and Cambodia, leading Bissoon to adopt the child by himself on the basis of his citizenship from Trinidad and Tobago. His adoption of William was finalized in Cambodia in June 2004 but has been the object of legal dispute ever since.

    Bissoon said he was overwhelmed with emotion Tuesday.

    "It's been devastating to me personally and professionally," he said. "When you're fighting someone of the magnitude of Elizabeth and the Johnson & Johnson fortune, it pretty much takes everything out of you. My practice has been almost destroyed, I've had more sleepless nights than I can tell you."

    Though Bissoon has been considered the sole legal parent of William since 2007, he has only been allowed to see the child for six hours per week pending the court's decision.

    Bissoon said he has spent more than $1 million fighting Johnson, but he is not seeking to remove the boy from Johnson's home, where he has lived most of his life. Bissoon told the court that he wants to co-parent the child with Johnson and would also be open to Johnson's filing for a second-parent adoption once the legal issues were resolved.

    "It's truly been a David and Goliath fight," said Bissoon's attorney, Bonnie Rabin. "But the premise was very simple. William was not available to be adopted when Elizabeth tried to adopt him, but she didn't tell anybody."

    Johnson's lead counsel, Richard A. Greenberg, drew a different conclusion. "Yes, she lost today but it's not necessarily over," he told AOL News. Greenberg said he may now take the case to the U.S. Supreme Court, citing federal and constitutional issues he said are involved in the case -- such as his belief that the Cambodian government wanted Elizabeth to adopt the child.

    When William arrived from Cambodia, he live with both Bissoon and Johnson in Johnson's enormous apartment overlooking Central Park.

    But in 2004 the romance soured between Johnson, who's been married and divorced five times, and Bissoon, author of "The Cellulite Cure." Bissoon continued to visit William at Johnson's home and co-parent him until the two had a fight in December 2005. Bissoon said later the fight was staged as an excuse to bar him from seeing William while Johnson was secretly starting adoption proceedings.

    Bissoon contended that what he called her "scheme" to secretly adopt William included her persuading him at one point to sign a document written by her lawyer in which he relinquished his adoptive rights. Bissoon said he signed the nonbinding document because he thought it would pave the way for them to one day both be legal parents of William.

    Unbeknownst to Bissoon, Johnson in 2006 began adoption proceedings, which were finalized later that year. When Bissoon found out, he and his lawyers filed a motion to vacate the adoption. Tuesday's decision was the third court ruling that Johnson's adoption should be voided.

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  2. Dennis in MA

    Dennis in MA Get off my lawn

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    Why do I think this poor boy, victim of secret adoption, will grow up and be sentenced to double-secret probation in college?

    Secret adoption???? :upeyes:
     

  3. jhoagland

    jhoagland That's right! Lifetime Member

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    Now I can't get that jingle out mah head! :soap:
     
  4. TBO

    TBO Why so serious? CLM

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    [​IMG]
     
  5. gwalchmai

    gwalchmai Lucky Member

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    Ahhh, Teri Garr - so cute, so hot, so eventually moonbat crazy.