Thursday, November 27, 2014

News... Press release... Law Commission recommendation to criminalise parental unlawful retention

Unfortunately the British media failed to pick up on this extremely important piece of news, which comes too late to save Emily, but would have made a huge difference at the time...

Here's the press release from Reunite International. After you read it I shall explain how it might have helped bring Emily home, it may even have changed the perceptions during the court case where I failed to prevent Emily's mother from taking her from the UK...

Press Release

Reunite International Child Abduction Centre welcomes the Law Commission’s recommendation to criminalise parental child abduction by retention.

Over the last 18 months, reunite, our Legal Working Group and our All Party Parliamentary Group on Child Abduction, have been consulting with the government to make wrongful retention a criminal offence, prosecutable and punishable on the same basis as abduction by removal, and the Law Commission's recommendations are a huge step forward in bringing about a change to legislation.

reunite's statistics indicate that approximately 40 per cent of all abduction cases are in fact wrongful retentions; ie where a parent takes a child overseas with the other parent's consent (or in accordance with a court order) but subsequently refuses to allow the child to return home at the end of the agreed or authorised period.

Whilst abduction by removal is a criminal offence, abduction by retention is not and so a large number of left-behind parents have no recourse to the criminal process or the assistance of the police, and statutory authorities are not necessarily empowered to act as they can in abduction cases.

reunite believes the impact on children and left-behind parents in a retention case is no less, nor any less deserving of criminal process, than where there is a removal.  Parental child abduction, whether by removal or retention, is recognised as a form of child abuse and causes real harm to children who potentially suffer great emotional trauma by suddenly being ripped away from all they know and being denied contact with their left-behind parent and extended family.  As the law stands at present, children who are retained outside of the UK are not offered the level of protection afforded to children in other abusive situations.

So how would this have changed things in Emily's case...?

Emily's mother strung the court along for months after the deadline of December 2008 for Emily's return to the UK with letters claiming either she or Emily were too ill to travel, and kept me from going to Russia to collect Emily and bring her home by saying "I can't guarantee Emily will be here when you come..." and "I won't sign a letter giving you permission to take Emily out of Russia..." and "I won't give you copies of our Marriage certificate and Emily's birth certificate so you cannot get a British passport for her, and I won't give you her Russian passport!"

Yet in April 2009 I got a phone call from her, saying she was coming to the house I was renting to collect possessions with the boyfriend soldier who broke us up (She later told me he had been terrified I'd found out he'd been given a promotion ban by the army and re-posted abroad for targeting married women for sport) so I rushed home and immediately called the police... refusing them entry to the house, after having received threats from him and because they'd abducted Emily.

The police arrived after they did, and she said her boyfriend had paid for her to travel for a two week holiday with him alone as a birthday present (I'll let you draw your own conclusions why and what he wanted) but that Emily couldn't come because she was "...too sick in hospital!"

Obviously my first reaction was that she was lying, and the second that if Emily was in Hospital what the hell was she doing coming for a sex holiday with him???

Anyway the police accepted their claim and told me they couldn't arrest her or her boyfriend (Who'd driven them to the airport and contributed to and encouraged the abduction) because she'd been given permission to take Emily on "Holiday" and that it was a case of unlawful retention and not a clear cut abduction...

They escorted her into the house, which I was to shortly lose having just been made redundant, which I'd explained to her, but when I wasn't looking she not only took clothes for her and Emily, but also went into a draw and took one of my old payslips, which she later used to claim in a Russian court that she should get half my wages. My claim that I'd lost my job fell on closed ears and they not only stopped me being allowed access, but stripped me of my parental rights, after which there has been no contact and no help from the FCO or anyone other than Reunite International.

You can see for yourself how if this change comes into law it would save another child, or at least allow prosecution of the perpetrators...

Chief Executive Officer of reunite, Alison Shalaby, said:

"In the interests of children, left-behind parents, and of justice, there could and should be a change to legislation so that all left-behind parents have access to the assistance of the police, the criminal process and statutory authorities to ensure the swift resolution of cases of wrongful retention.  

"We would like to thank Sir John Stanley MP and Stephen Timms MP, Co-Chairs of the All Party Parliamentary Group on Child Abduction, for supporting our efforts to change legislation.  We will continue working together to ensure the Law Commission's recommendations are advanced by the government and legislation is changed to better support abducted children and left-behind parents."

Stephen Timms MP, Co-Chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group on Child Abduction said:

"Our concern around this anomaly in legislation comes in the context of a very marked increase in the number of cases of international parental child abduction in recent years.  There should be equality of treatment for what is essentially a serious criminal offence striking at the heart of family life, and in the individual interest of the left-behind parents and abducted children who are victims of retention."

I would like to thank Alison and the Reunite team for their tireless efforts to help we parents going through this nightmare, and more importantly our children who suffer so much. I would also like to thank Stephen Timms MP and the All Party Parliamentary Group on Child Abduction, and ask, PLEASE let this be but a first step. There is a long way still to go!

Please share links to this blog to everyone you know, and please support Reunite International, and write by all means to the All Party Parliamentary Group on Child Abduction to show that these children matter. They are our most vulnerable citizens yet our most forgotten.

Send your support
I have been working to leave a paper trail for Emily as well as trying to raise money for Reunite International. There are several ways to support both these endevours...

Please visit listen to Emily's song and watch the videos to find out more... The song can be bought from Amazon or I-Tunes by simply searching for Emily's Song by Sam Blue, and with enough dowloads we can start raising money at last for Reunite...

During December 2014 I will donate 50p for every paperback copy of my comedy novel Religious Pursuits bought during the month... here's a link to order your copy.

Every single share of these links, visit and download makes a huge difference
Thank You

Neil Winnington
@reuniteemily on Twitter 

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Secret Santa's Indie Book Giveaway and Orchard Book Club Authors Event

Now here's something I am very proud to be part of... 70 Authors (So far) have donated 79 titles as a free giveaway to some very lucky readers, and a copy of my very own Religious Pursuits is part of the package...

Here is a list of the authors contributing so far...
Taylor Ann Bunker - Witch In The Woods
Donald Wilson II - Cross Roads
Rose Montague - Jade
Colleen Gareau - Sam(uel) and My Mother's Summer Vacations
Mika Jolie - The Scale (Martha's Way Series)
C.K. Dawn - Cloak of Shadows
Wesley Morrison - Let No False Angels
D.M. Cain - A Chronicle of Chaos
Suzanne McKenna Link - Saving Toby
Ash Krafton - Bleeding Hearts
Peggy M. McAloon - Elle Burton and the Secret Portals
Ksenia Anske - Irkadura
Dylan J. Morgan - The Dead Lands
Kristen Mott - Odie the Stray Kitten
A.S. Washington & De'Quan Foster's - The Twelve
Adam Dreece - The Yellow Hoods: Along Came a Wolf (Book 1)
Lori Crane - Oaktibbee Creek
Lori Lesko - Copyright
Johanna Harness - Spillworthy
J.S. Snow - Redemption
Mikey Campling - Trespass The Darkeningstone
M.J. Fahy - The Magpie King
Neil Winnington - Religious Pursuits
C.J. Morrow - The Finder
Danielle Prophet - The Opposite Of Gravity
Robin MartinDuttmann - Zoo on the Moon
Rochelle Campbell - Fury From Hell
Christina McMullen - Going Green
Paul David Chambers - Manners Cost Everything
Clara Grace Walker - Gratification, Gossip and Redemption
W.M. Calloway - The Xenton Chronicles
Christy Heron - Unrequited
Josephine O'Brien - Shared Skies
Mark Victor Young - Once Were Friends
Patrena Miller - She's Not Worthy and The Road
M.E. Walker - The Finding
HJ Lawson - War Kids
Elizabeth Guizzetti - Other Systems
Jo Bissell - Beyond the Reach of Judgement
Suzette Brown - Alzheimer's Through My Mothers Eyes
Kirby Howell - Autumn In The City Of Angels
Michelle A.Picarella - Livian
Jessica Keller - Saving Yesterday
Elena Sandovici - Dogs With Bagels
K. M. Herkes - Controlled Descent
A.T. Russell - Sacred Puppies
David P Perlmutter - Wrong Place Wrong Time
Jennifer Gibson - Sway, Compass and Destiny
Kory M. Shrum - Dying for a Living and Dying by the Hour
Adrienne Thompson - Your Love is King
Pete Buckley - The Colonel of Krasnoyarsk
Chess Desalls - Travel Glasses
Ed Ireland - The Last Ranger of Sarn & Blood Moon Sacrifice

Not a bad list, I am sure you'll agree and sure to rise...
How do you enter? Easy. Just click on this link, log on using your Facebook account and you're entered...

As if the spirit of good cheer wasn't enough, I will also be attending the Orchard book Club's author event in March, along with 30 other authors ready to sign copies of our books and in the evening there is a meal and a ball. I shall have copies of my books on my table of course, as well as these T-Shirts and other merchandise...
...There's a version of the t-shirt without the red hearts too haha...

Links to buy tickets are here

If you bring a copy of any of my books (or those by I. T. Heurtze) I will sign your book and give you a 10% discount on all the other books on my table as well as the T-Shirts.

I look forward to seeing you all and don't forget to follow me on Twitter @NeilWinnington

Monday, November 10, 2014

The British Economy and EC situation explained… Sort of…

David Cameroon and George Osgood were old school friends who inherited a business called UK.Con. They were also members of a business club called the EU that their friends didn’t like, so to look clever to their friends they would keep having tantrums in club meetings and threatening to take their toys away, which made them very unpopular with all the other club members.

Once upon a time the family business used to make things that people could use, and an ancient ancestor enrolled the business in the European club so they could sell more of these things to other club members. Before they joined they asked all their friends if they should, and everyone agreed it was a good idea.

David’s Great Grandmother Maggie didn’t like the club much, because the other members didn’t always agree with her and she hated anyone who disagreed with her. The only people she hated more than the stuffy old men who ran the club were her own workers, so she decided to sack all her manufacturing workers and change the family firm into a financial business selling dodgy financial products to her friends and other club members.

Realising that the stupid bitch was planning to take away competition from their own manufacturing businesses the club members agreed to give her business a rebate on her membership fee if she promised NEVER to make anything useful again… and Maggie thought this was a wonderful thing and told all her friends she had tricked the stuffy old men in the club!

Maggie was happy because she didn’t have to deal with workers anymore, and by giving money to her friends she made sure she bought their loyalty long after she finished ruining the business.

When her favourite son took over the family business after all her other kids said they didn’t love her any more things got so bad that the workers collective who used to represent the factory workers Maggie used to employ briefly took over the company from Maggie’s greedy family, but they realised that the company was making plenty of money selling dodgy financial products, so they didn’t bother starting to make useful things again.

After they started fighting among themselves they became indistinguishable from Maggie’s family, and someone somewhere noticed the Emperor wasn’t wearing any clothes, and also that the company had a massive pyramid selling scheme that had no real money to pay everyone if they asked for their money back… Everyone asked for their money back!

Maggie’s family, now led by David Cameroon seized their chance to take over the company, and set about telling everyone the previous management had really mucked things up, even though their own family had invented the very pyramid scheme that had bankrupted the company.

In order to make some more friends Cameroon and Osgood told everyone that the very workers Maggie had made redundant were stealing money from the company, and that because of them and their representatives who’d lost all that money all the poor people couldn’t have money at all, so the rich people could have even more.

They argued that rich people getting richer would give money to the poorer poor if they learned to dance and jump very high. Unfortunately the very poor who were disabled couldn’t jump at all, but Cameroon and Osgood said they were all pretending, so they came up with a scheme where disabled people who learned to jump could earn money and all the rest would have their money taken away to be given to the rich!

In spite of the efforts to demonise the poor, some of Cameroon and Osgood’s friends got even greedier, and wanted to leave the club and keep other club members out of their garden. This put pressure on Cameroon to stop playing nicely at the club, so he took all his toys home and stopped being nice. The other club members carried on playing without him, and said he couldn’t play games if he wasn’t going to play nicely any more.

The club members were playing monopoly and noticed that Cameroon and Osgood had been doing a bit better than them, and because the club rules said that everyone shared their pocket money they presented Cameroon and Osgood with a bill, pointing to the rules of the club that Osgood and Cameroon hadn’t bothered reading.

Cameroon spat out his dummy and told all his friends he wouldn’t pay, and that he would throw stones at the other club members until they gave up! Not being very good at throwing though Cameroon only managed to smash up his own greenhouse, so he sent Osgood to beg the other club members to not take all their pocket money away.

Osgood being such a nasty little creep who’d upset everyone in the club even more than Cameroon, stood no chance and the club members said there’s no way he could get what he wanted, so Osgood burst into tears saying that everyone hated him.

He made such a pathetic spectacle, that the club offered to give George the rebate the family business had received ever since Maggie closed her factories a little earlier to help him out… so long as he stopped snivelling. They also said he could pay the bill in two installments to give him time to find some more poor people to rob.

The rebate was half of the bill they’d been given and Osgood made an even bigger spectacle of himself by bursting into tears and promising never to be such a prick again.

However, being the slimy little shit that he was he called Cameroon and they told ALL their friends Osgood had negotiated to pay half the original bill and had gone into the club and beat everyone up!

One day Cameroon and Osgood, Maggie and their dodgy financial products will really finish off their company, but too many of their friends are lining their pockets to care, and the Emperor is still walking around naked!