After denouncement from a Brazilian, the Netherlands suspends international adoptions

«A committee created in the Netherlands after repeated denunciations by Patrick pointed out the responsibility of the state in “various types of abuse that occurred structurally”, and the government interrupted the processes of international adoption in the country.»

For the online Folha de S.Paulo article in PORTUGUESE, click here.

For the Folha de S.Paulo newspaper article in PORTUGUESE, click here.

For the online Estado de S.Paulo article in PORTUGUESE, click here.

For the Estado de S.Paulo newspaper article in PORTUGUESE, click here.


State Facilitated Illegal Intercountry Adoptions from Brazil

The government of the Netherlands instigated an independent commission in April 2019 to look into international abuses after legal procedures showed that the Dutch government had been involved in illegal adoption from Brazil, and pointed to the possibility of more such cases.
The report issued by the state commission in February 2021, said it had found systematic wrongdoing, including pressuring poor women to give up their babies, falsifying documents, engaging in fraud and corruption, and, in effect, buying and selling children. In cases from Brazil, the Dutch government was aware of misdeeds in adoptions and the role of Dutch diplomats stationed in Brazil therein, but did nothing about them and allowed them to continue. The report also concluded that the role of Dutch diplomats was deliberately left out of the 1984 report of the Dutch police investigation into illegal intercountry adoptions from Brazil.

For the full report, click here.

For the summary of the report, click here.

For the Speech by Minister Dekker upon receipt of the report (DUTCH ONLY), click here.


10 August 2019 – LLM Thesis defended by Patrick Noordoven for the School of Law, University of Brasília, as per prerequisite to obtain the Masters in Law title. «This Thesis is dedicated to all persons who are deprived of their right to identity through intercountry adoption. You all deserve access to your origins, as recognized by human rights law and jurisprudence.»

To access the Thesis, click here.

Dutch government to investigate the role of the State in respect to illegal intercountry adoptions

6 December 2018 – After years of demanding information from the Dutch State about illegal intercountry adoption practices from Brazil, the Justice Minister sent a letter to parliament in which the government announces to instigate an external committee to investigate illegal intercountry adoption in the past. The committee’s mandate comprises the facts and the role of the Dutch government in respect to these adoptions. 

For more information (DUTCH ONLY), click here.

Conférence: Dérives dans l’adoption 2017

On Saturday 18 November 2017 our founder Patrick Noordoven gave a presentation at the Conférence: Dérives dans l’adoption, hosted by La Voix des Adoptés and Born in Lebanon in Paris, France. His presentation was titled “La recherche des familles”.

The presentation made reference to the following two short video clips from 1982; a Dutch TV report explaining the illegal adoption procedure and an interview with Cathia Seeder, providing further insights into the procedures.

The French translation of Patrick’s article “PROMISING PRACTICE: RAISING AWARENESS ABOUT FALSE BIRTH REGISTRATION PRACTICES, KNOWN AS THE BRAZIL BABY AFFAIR” for the ISS publication “Responding to illegal adoptions: A Professional Handbook” was presented at the conference to provide further insights into the issue.

Download the article in Spanish
Download the article in English.
Download the article in French.

Adoption Initiative Conference 2016

On Friday 10 June our founder Patrick Noordoven gave a presentation at the 9th Biennial Adoption Conference “Myth and Reality in Adoption: Transforming Practice Through Lessons Learned” at Montclair State University in Montclair, New Jersey, USA. He contributed to the conference track ‘Adoption Policy and Practice’ and focused his presentation on the topic of “The Human Right to Identity and Intercountry Adoption: False Birth Registration Practices Known as the Brazil Baby Affair”.

For more details, click here.

Radio report: Illegally adopted Brazilians search for their roots

Since the 1970’s, many children from developing countries have been adopted by people from abroad, some of them illegally. In Brazil, foreign adoptions peaked in the 1980s. Those babies are now adults, and many are trying to find their biological families in Brazil.

Radio reporter Katy Sherriff accompanied Louisa on her quest to discover her Brazilian origins with the help of NGO Brazil Baby Affair.

Listen to the recorded radio broadcast in English here.

State involvement, intermediaries and financial gain

Dutch TV report “Achter het Nieuws” 22 February 1982 – Cathia Seeder provides an insight in the illegal adoption procedure and denounces the involvement of the Dutch State in the illegal adoption cases. Seeder later confessed to being “auxiliary complicit” to the deprivation of the right to identity in Dutch, West-German, Swedish and US-American illegal adoption cases; source: Dutch Police Report 1984. You can watch the video here.


Charlotte grew up in an upper-class Parisian quarter with her adoptive parents. She had a tough childhood, her mother was bipolar and her father was an alcoholic.

She was curious to know more about her adoption from Brazil and started investigating when she was 14 years old. Charlotte was told that she supposedly was found on the streets but she mistrusted this story.

What she found in search for the truth was startling, none of her adoption papers – which were kept a secret from her – made any sense and her inquiries about her Brazilian origins remained unanswered.

For more details, click here.