UPDATE as of 6/26 -- The media has picked up the story. See my full post here.
UPDATE as of 6/25 -- The blog All Are Precious in His Sight posted this news about the Moghadam family this morning:
Apparently an anonymous tipper contacted the Ghana police and made accusations that the Moghadams were child trafficking. The police acted upon this tip, interrogated the Moghadams, but when the Moghadams only had copies (as opposed to originals) of their adoption paperwork, the Ghanaian police arrested Sol and Christine Moghadam and removed all six of the children from their custody for further investigation. Sol and Christine were put in jail while their six children, including their two biological US children, were held in a government orphanage overnight.
The Moghadams’ adoption agency (Dillon International) acted quickly, as did others in Ghana, as did countless people in the US adoption community. Sol and Christine were released from prison Saturday afternoon, their two biological children were returned to them, but their four adoptive children from Ghana remain in the orphanage until the Ghana government investigates and clears the children for international adoption.
The Moghadams have been falsely accused of child trafficking, and they have all of the official legal paperwork to prove that the adoption of these four children has been done legally and with integrity. While it’s wonderful that the government officials of Ghana take child trafficking seriously, it’s heartbreaking to see this happen to a legitimate adoptive family.
UPDATE as of 6/24 -- Many blogs are reporting that Sol and Christine Mogdaham have been released on bail and are now staying in a hotel, and that their two biological children have been released from the government orphanage into the custody of the US Embassy. State Department officials have apparently left the two boys in the care of their parents; meanwhile, the four children the Mogdahams have adopted remain in orphanage care. A hearing is said to be set for Monday.
According to the blog No Greater Joy, Sol and Christine Moghadam, an American couple, have been arrested in Ghana on charges of child trafficking and their six children -- two biological, ages four and seven, and four newly adopted older kids -- have been sent to a local orphanage.The younger children do not speak the local language -- do they even understand what has happened?
The accused couple had been blogging about their adoption plans here at "The Moghadam's Journey to Africa;" their last updated entry, on May 18, is titled "Court date set -- Ghana here we come!" According to the blog, wife Christine grew up in Seattle; photos indicate she is of Asian descent. Husband Sol survived the life of a street child in Tehran before emigrating to the US. Husband and wife appear to be devout evangelical Christians. They are apparently working with the Dillon Adoption Agency, which enjoys a good reputation. They also made a video for Adopt Together, a fundraising platform used by prospective adoptive families to help finance adoption.
I really know nothing else about this family, but intuition tells me that the family's multiethnic appearance may have attracted negative attention; in other words, because they don't "match" as a family, Ghanian authorities decided to question their bona fides. I may be totally off base here, but I will be following their story to find out what happens. I hope the US State Department gets to the bottom of this quickly.