STOLEN CHILDREN: Why and How Parents Kidnap Their Kids. . . and What to Do About It by John Edward Gill

STOLEN CHILDREN: Why and How Parents Kidnap Their Kids. . . and What to Do About It

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KIRKUS REVIEW

We have more unambiguous and enforceable laws against the theft of automobiles than we have against the theft of children, author Gill maintains in this deeply disturbing book. Typically, such abductions are carried out either before a custody decree is handed down (often by a father convinced he hasn't a fair chance in the courts) or across state lines, where custody decrees usually carry little or no weight. Gill stumps for laws making such acts a federal offense--his own child disappeared this way--and decries the lack of federal machinery to hunt down children taken in this manner (though manpower is made available to trace fathers who disappear without paying child support). The book makes its effect, of course, in its recounting of stories--some of them utterly horrific--of children snatched and countersnatched (professionals can be hired for this purpose); led to believe that the absent parent is dead or uncaring; sometimes even hurt or killed in the whirlwind swooping-down attempts. Mothers and fathers deprived of any word from their children for years on end can sound piteous indeed; but Gill sees hope in the emergence of parent-support groups, increased responsiveness on the part of the federal bureaucracy, and progress toward uniform custody laws and some federal search activity. Timely and rousing.

Pub Date: April 20th, 1981
Publisher: Seaview--dist. by Harper & Row