• Italy's news in English
 
app_header_v3

Italy wrong to take child born to surrogate: ECHR

The Local · 27 Jan 2015, 16:18

Published: 27 Jan 2015 16:18 GMT+01:00

In a ruling on Tuesday, the court held that Italy violated the right of the married couple to recognize the child as their own, despite there being no biological tie.

Donatina Paradiso and Giovanni Campanelli, from Colletorto in Molise, turned to Rosjurconsulting, a Russian law firm specializing in reproductive law and surrogacy, after several failed attempts to conceive through IVF, the court said in its judgement.

The baby boy was born in Moscow in February 2011 to a surrogate mother via IVF.

The couple were registered as the baby’s parents, in accordance with Russian law, but without any indication that the child was born through surrogacy.

They were later provided with documents from the Italian Consulate in Moscow allowing the child to leave for Italy.

But when they attempted to register the birth in Colletorto, they were accused of fraud after the Italian Consulate informed authorities that information provided on the child’s birth certificate was incorrect.

A DNA test later that year revealed that Campanelli was not the child’s biological father. The couple claimed they were unaware that Campanelli’s semen had not been used in the Russian clinic.

Under Italian law, the person who gives birth to a baby is legally its mother, and the use of surrogate mothers is illegal.

In October 2011, Campobasso minors court ruled that the child be removed immediately from the couple and placed under guardianship, on the grounds there was “no biological relationship between them” and because there were doubts over the couple’s ability to raise a child.

The baby was placed in a children’s home, without Paradiso and Campanelli being informed of its location or allowed any contact, and in January 2013 it was entrusted to foster parents.

The child’s biological mother could not be traced.

Story continues below…

In its ruling, the ECHR said the Italian state had violated Article 8 of the European Convention on Human Rights enshrining the right to respect for private and family life.

Although Paradiso and Campanelli, aged 48 and 60, respectively, had spent only six months with the baby, the court considered the period to have “covered important stages in his young life and they had behaved as parents towards him during that period”.

The court ordered the Italian state to pay the applicants €20,000 in respect of non-pecuniary damage and €10,000 for costs and expenses.

However, the state is not obliged to return the child as he would have "developed emotional ties with his foster family", the court said.  

For more news from Italy, join us on Facebook and Twitter.

The Local (news@thelocal.it)

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
Italy tests 3,500 children for TB after doctor diagnosed
The doctor had carried out vaccinations on thousands of small children. File photo: Pexels

The hospital stressed the tests were a "precautionary and preventative measure".

Ancient Roman coins unearthed at Japanese castle
The 4th-century copper coin found in Japan. Photo: Jiji Press/AFP

How the coins got there is a mystery.

Italy slashes growth figures ahead of crucial referendum
Matteo Renzi at a press conference last month. Photo: AFP

Italy's economy has barely grown since 1999 - hitting working and middle class voters hardest. Economists say Italy will struggle to hit even the "prudent" revised targets.

Italy professor: Students should plagiarize - teachers do
One of the university buildings. Photo: Maris Firsova

A professor at Italy's oldest university says teachers are granted "impunity" in case of plagiarism.

Pope cars auctioned off to help Syrian refugees
The cars have personalized number plates. Photo: AFP

Got a spare €9,000?

Renzi revives plan for a 'bridge to Sicily'
Renzi said the bridge would "bring Sicily closer". Photo: Sarah Murray/Flickr

The bridge was first dreamed up in the 1960's, but no prime minister has succeeded in bringing it to fruition.

‘Destitute’ private jet owner fined thousands for tax fraud
The private jet-owner claimed to have no income or property. File photo: Bob Adams/Flickr

He had a private aeroplane and eight homes.

Italian mayor refuses to officiate civil unions
A protest in favour of civil unions earlier this year. Photo: Giuseppe Cacace/AFP

“Why can’t a mayor be a conscientious objector?”

Netflix to launch 'illuminating' Amanda Knox documentary
Amanda Knox in court for her first appeal of her murder conviction. Photo: Tiziana Fabi/AFP pool/AFP

The documentary comes out on Netflix on Friday.

Venetians dress as pirates to protest cruise ships
A protestor at a previous demonstration against large ships. Photo: AFP

Locals aren't happy about the presence of huge cruise ships in the Venetian lagoon.

Photo: Tiziana Fabi/AFP
Culture
Eight things you should know about Rome's Spanish Steps
Sponsored Article
Why Jordan is the ‘Different’ East
The incredible hero dogs of Italy’s earthquake
National
Why quake-hit Amatrice will never be the same again
National
Why discontented Italians could derail their economy
Society
Keep passports safe: Typical pickpocket scams revealed
Culture
Why coffee in Italy is a culture you must taste to understand
Society
The richest families in Florence in 1427 are still rich today
Culture
So why do pasta-loving Italians live such long lives?
National
Italy's Renzi prepares for stormy autumn
Society
This 104-year-old just saw the sea for the first time
National
Should Rome give up on its 2024 Olympic dream?
Society
The Italian doctor giving hope to thousands of migrants
Culture
Ten 'Italian' dishes that don't actually exist in Italy
Sport
Five Italian athletes going for gold at the Rio Olympics
Travel
Trastevere: From a fiery past to Rome’s souvenir stand
Politics
Think Trump would be a disaster? Just ask the Italians
National
How Brexit has helped to expose Italy’s banking malaise
Politics
After Brexit, keep a close eye on Italy's Five Star Movement
Lifestyle
12 mistakes foreigners make when moving to Italy
National
Why Milan could be Europe's post-Brexit financial hub
Travel
Five crowd-free alternatives to Italy's tourist hotspots
2,523
jobs available