US dad wins Brazil court ruling on son's custody

December 17, 2009 6:10:52 AM PST
David Goldman headed for Brazil Wednesday night, perhaps one step closer to being permanently reunited with his son. "I'm hopeful. I'm not on the roller coaster," said David Goldman.

He refuses to get his hopes up until Sean is in his arms again.

The New Jersey dad has been locked in a 5 year battle for custody. Now, he's savoring a legal victory, now that one of Brazil's highest courts in Rio de Janeiro backed a lower court ruling that called for 9-year-old Sean Goldman to be reunited with his dad.

"My focus is to go down there and bring my son home back to me and his family safely," said Goldman.

The emotional case gained international attention almost a year and a half ago, when David Goldman learned that his wife had died giving birth. Her death came 4 years after taking Sean to her native Brazil and keeping him there against David Goldman's wishes. She got a divorce and then married the man who would become Sean's stepfather. Joao Paulo Lins e Silva has waged a legal battle to keep Sean in Brazil.

New Jersey Congressman Chris Smith has been pushing the Brazilian Government to get involved and resolve the case.

"There's possibility of appeals, the court may take one up on Thursday, the high court, but the fact that they took the case, the appeal, is a very good sign that they've had enough," explained Rep. Chris Smith.

David Goldman has had enough and hopes this will be his last trip to Brazil to bring his son home.

"I love you. Let's go home. I hope it can be that simple," said Goldman.