Canary Stories #10 – Abducted in Australia
By Wendy Greene
September 13, 2016. Aurora, CO (ONN). The majority of the American population are under the false impression that the family law courts help families that are going through divorce and custody battles. When you throw CPS/DCFS into the mix, it is a total annihilation of an innocent family for profit. That being said, in this Canary Story, I am focusing solely on an alienated father by the name of David Shubert.
David, like many other parents and grandparents reached out to me via email. He requested that I write an article about his 9-year uphill battle with his ex-wife (Shirley), with the simple request of not having any interference in regards to his relationships with his step son and his daughter; whom was an added joy to his life during the 6-year marriage with their mother.
CPS is not involved at all in his living nightmare. David’s nightmare is the absolute fault of the family law courts here in America, and in Australia. They have both failed David as a father; who possesses an unbreakable allegiance to his children that were abducted by Shirley in June 2007 and taken to Australia.
Actual samples of emails between Shirley and David
From an email from David to Shirley:
I’ve tried a couple of times to write this same letter, but each time I could not find the words to complete it. I have hoped and prayed for the last two weeks that your anger towards me would subside and that you would become less angry. After your last email and voice mail, I thought that things were improving in regards to this, but now my hopes were again lost. I don’t know, nor understand what has happened in the last six months, but I believe that it is more than just me to cause an extreme change in our lives. I will never know, unless you are willing to tell me exactly what has happened. All I do know is that I still love you and that I also need to have our children in my life. We have both made mistakes that we need to work on, but we have to be honest with one another and make the effort to work on these things. I have offered solutions and even options that will allow this. I just need you to meet me halfway, so that we can make things right again. For the sake of us and for our children, please consider this. David.
This is an excerpt from an email that Shirley sent to David a week after she abducted the children:
As with your request of me petitioning you, actually I have thought about it. You want my help? Only on certain conditions and I need your reply also as soon as possible. I need at least $7,000.00 for relocation and a vehicle for me and the kids. If you can provide me this amount, I will petition you. If not, forget about permanently coming to Australia. Shirley.
Here is an excerpt from another one:
All I can say is FUCK you! You can visit us in Australia sometime soon but because you have not been able or are not able to provide my demands, go rot where you are! A challenge for you, show me that you are a responsible person and perhaps that will change my mind. If not, sometime soon when the kids and I are settled in Australia, our memory with you will fade away and we will probably not be in touch with you anymore.
David and Shirley had a tumultuous 6-year marriage. He described her behavior to me during our phone interview. He said, although undiagnosed, she expounded extreme behaviors that would either be mistaken for symptoms of bi-polar disorder, or she is in fact suffering from bi-polar disorder. Although she has not been clinically diagnosed, David and their young children have suffered greatly and needlessly by Shirley’s actions and behaviors over the last decade.
Shortly after Shirley abducted their children and took off to Australia with them, David was receiving 3-5 phone calls a day from collection agencies. Come to find out she was in an extreme amount of debt, that she did not bother to tell David about. The amount of debt was in excess of $60,000. One thought David had while ruminating over and over in his head, ‘why did she leave and take the kids out of the blue?’ Perhaps she was trying to escape her extremely high debt problem.
Three weeks after Shirley took off to Australia with their children, David filed for divorce. It was finalized 18 months later. Another strange behavior that I wanted to bring to light, that David explained to me during our interview, was that when he was cleaning out the house of all of her belongings, he found identical purses, shoes, clothing for the children such as scarves, jackets, you name it hidden with the price tags still on them in the basement. It was not just a few, it was 3 and 4 of the exact same items, brand new, hidden in bags and cupboards in the basement.
Into the courts
Once Shirley was in Australia with the children she called the child support agency in Australia in order to collect child support from him. David started his fight by reaching out to the State Department, with the hope to obtain a hearing at the Hague Convention; that should have taken only 3 months due to the urgency of the fact that his children were abducted and taken into another country. It took 13 months to get a ruling.
Since it was not in Shirley’s favor, she filed an appeal in which took another 4 months. She lost the appeal and was ordered to bring the children back to Colorado. Shirley was so upset by this court ruling, she called the Central Authority of Australia and told them she was not bringing them back and will kill her children and herself! The Central Authority informed Shirley that if she does not comply with the court order, they would have David come and pick up the children and put her in jail. This all took place in April, 2009.
Shirley, by this time had re-married. It is assumed that the new husband actually was imploring her to do the right thing, by taking the children back to Colorado and show up to the upcoming parental responsibility hearing. Surprisingly, Shirley, her new husband and the children in tow came to Colorado in May, 2009 in order to attend the hearing. At this moment in time, David did not have the funds in order to obtain an attorney. He did however possess a mountain of evidence against Shirley; in which included the threatening emails.
Two weeks before Father’s Day in 2009, the judge confiscated the children’s passports and granted David unsupervised weekend visitation with his children, in which was a glorious 16 hours of quality time he was dreaming about for 2 years now. David had 2 weekends with his children before having to go back to court the following Monday after Father’s Day; in the mindset that he had won the case hands down.
To David’s dismay; the judge did in fact have some concerns in regards to Shirley’s idle threats, but his reasoning was that the children have been in Australia with their mother for 2 years already and should remain with their mother. As you all could imagine, David’s heart sank like a rock to his toes upon hearing the judges’ unjust decision. David was reduced to phone calls with his children every weekend.
David called his children the moment they touched ground back in Australia. There was no response and it went to the voicemail, where he left them a message. He summed it up to the fact that they were wiped out from their trip back to Australia and would try again the following weekend. But when he attempted to call his children the following weekend, once again, there was no answer and he was reduced to only being able to leave his children a voicemail.
Finally, the third week that they were back in Australia, Shirley’s new husband answered the phone. He let David speak to both of his children for a few minutes each. Then David heard a clicking on the phone line and the call was prematurely disconnected from his children. Every weekend for the following year David was only ever able to get their voicemail. That was the last time he spoke to his children. David spent that year putting in contempt motions in which Shirley has only responded in writing. She did not show up via telephone nor in person to any of the hearings.
Denied contact with his children
David has wisely kept a journal of all his call attempts and hired a Private Investigator with the hope that he could find out where his children are, and if they are okay. The Private Investigator found out that the phone number David had for his children was disconnected, along with the only email address he had for Shirley to communicate in regards to their children’s well-being. The Private Investigator went to the last known address for David’s children, and long behold, there was a moving trailer parked in the driveway.
With David’s instruction, the investigator followed the moving trailer to the new address. They were able to obtain the new address but not a new phone number or email address to date. At this point in time David has spent thousands of dollars in court fees, legal fees, and the Private Investigator. All the while Shirley has racked up a total of 4 contempt charges.
David was able to obtain the funds to hire an attorney in order to have a modification hearing. This attorney was rendered to be useless. Even though he was $200 an hour, he was so unprofessional at one point, he wrote David a receipt on a napkin. The modification hearing finally took place in January, 2012. David’s “bottom dweller” as he referred to him as, in which obviously has earned that title, showed up 15 minutes late to court, in which upset the judge from the get go. He presented a horrible case to the judge despite the plethora of evidence David had against Shirley.
As a result, the judge denied the modification due to the fact David’s attorney failed to show any significant changes in the current situation to warrant a modification to the original order. Needless to say, David rightfully fired his attorney and moved forward in an attempt to file a motion to reconsider. In order to be able to achieve this, he needed to obtain copies of the transcripts. But go figure, the court recorder was not turned on during his modification hearing.
Back to court
At this point, David was better established financially and went on to retain the best attorney in the Denver area. The man stood 6-feet, 6-inches tall and was very intelligent. This attorney was able to obtain a new date, a new hearing, with a new judge in which took place in November, 2011. He even had an expert witness, Dr. Lon Kopit, whom is a child psychologist and is well known in this courthouse.
Again, of course, Shirley was a no show. The judge awarded David Sole parental responsibilities and supervised visits for Shirley. Shirley was served papers informing her that she lost the case and she is to return the children to Colorado. David was under the impression that his living nightmare was finally over. Much to his dismay, it is still going on today.
In June, 2012 there was a child support modification hearing in order to reverse the child support. Since the court order states that David is the custodial parent and Shirley is to only have supervised visits, once she brings them back to America that is. The State of Colorado will not flip the bill for the extradition warrant. So, if she stays in Australia there is nothing to force her to obey the court orders.
If she were to come here, I would think with all that I have read on this case that she is facing some significant jail time. Yet, I tend to think with common sense, this simply is not the case. There is nothing on record that she is in any danger of losing her freedom, even though she has committed horrific crimes against her children and their father, David. The Child support reversal was supposed to take 3 months. It took 3 years for their legal team in Australia to start collecting child support payments from Shirley. In 2015 they were indeed reversed and were sent to Colorado.
Shirley actually had the audacity to hire her own Australian attorney to fight having to pay David any child support. A hearing took place in Australia in February, 2016 where David appeared by phone, in the Australian family law court. It was continued so that David could organize all of his defense paperwork, and you would think be able to obtain the courts’ favor.
Fight over jurisdiction – Australia vs United States
In April, 2016, David again appeared by phone and presented his case to the judge. Shirley represented herself with a friend of the court. He pointed out the obvious – she abducted the children, he possesses sole custody in which is court ordered, Australia has no jurisdiction, Colorado has jurisdiction. Case and point, right? Wrong. Even though Shirley has illegal obtainment of the children, this did not sway the Australian judge. Since Shirley has current custody of the children the judge stayed the judgment.
According to not only David, but other alienated fathers I have joined forces with, courts have a tendency to hold a bias for the mother. Not in my case, as most of you know, but Australia appears to be twice as bad as here if that is possible. According to David and the court papers he has been more than forthcoming with, it is possible, and David and his children are needlessly suffering because of it.
After all the tens of thousands of dollars, and all the years fighting with blood, sweat, and tears, this Australian judge shoved David back into the same square he was in back in 2009! It was not until the April hearing that David learned that the modification orders had not been registered in Australia by the Colorado courts, as it had been done previously in the original hearing back in 2009. That being said, the Child Support Agency and now the family courts over there are fully aware of the modification orders made in Colorado and have done nothing to enforce them.
In June, 2016, David received an email from Shirley with attached court documents that state that she is suing him for the child support money he legally obtained from her, pain and suffering, legal fees, and time away from work for a grand total of $40,000. David informed me that Shirley is a school teacher with a masters in early child care and development. It is beyond frightening that this woman influences young minds, yet is a parental child abductor and alienator with her own children.
The fight goes on
At the end of David and my phone interview I asked him what his next move is going to be. He stated, “I am not done fighting, I never will be, I will never give up, I am holding on til the end, and will keep going until the day that I am looking my children in their eyes, and I am able to tell them that I never stopped loving them, and I never gave up on fighting for them.”
David, like all of us wronged and alienated parents and grandparents, need community support via Facebook and other social media. We must all join forces and fight against parental alienation, parental abduction, and uphold our parental rights. Our future depends on children that are mentally sound and raised by both sets of parents whether they live in the same home or not. We must not use our children as pawns or ammo against the other parent as a way to fulfill narcissistic, self-centered, sociopathic needs. These are children, and they are not to be used as a vindictive and malicious way to get back at your ex-partner.
If you are a parent that does this, stop thinking about yourself and think about your children. One final note, there is no need for family law courts; everything can be handled in either civil court or criminal court. Family law courts need to be abolished. They are harming children and parents rather than helping them in any way.
David has launched a GoFundMe campaign in order to obtain the funds to retain an Australian attorney to finally bring his children home back to their loving father, where they belong. If you’d like to help David bring his children home, visit his GoFundMe page. Visit the Facebook Page David set up titled, Bring Back Chianne. Also, here is another article written about David’s parental plight. Read additional information about Parent Alienation Syndrome.
Wendy Greene is a fourth generation Human and Civil Rights activist, writer/advocate for the victims of autism and homelessness, and author of the up-and-coming book ‘Justice’. The Canary Stories are individual true accounts documenting the corruption and fraud of Child Protective Services and similar agencies, sent from around the world by parents requesting that their voices be heard. The ongoing reports are named The Canary Stories after the life-saving canaries that protected the coal mines. Today, The Canary Stories are also sounding the warning in an attempt to save children, families and even lives. Readers can email Wendy at [email protected].
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