Hello Cruel World
Thursday, August 12, 2004
The Tangled Web
They say story is a force of nature. Reality certainly turns up some strange stories.
There was a distressing abduction of a 24-day-old baby named Montana recently in a Melbourne (Victoria, Australia) car parking station. Her mother had put her into the baby capsule in the car, and was loading shopping into the car boot with an older child. A man hit & grabbed the mother while a woman took the baby, then they ran to another car and drove off. Being in a shopping centre car park, there was some security camera vision of a middle-aged couple they thought were involved.
Lots of shock & horror from the public. Distressing scenes with the family. Naturally, from experience of other cases, first thoughts were some domestic custody dispute, but this was quickly dismissed by the police, though only the mother and her relations seemed to be on the media pleading to the kidnappers.
Then it was found that the father was a Barbaro, part of one of the Melbourne criminal families. His cousin had been assassinated not long back as part of a recent spate of killings in that milieu. Thoughts turned to possible revenge/warning/feud motives.
It was very soon after that, however, that Montana turned up, placed in a derelict house used as an occasional drug squat. Much relief.
Not long after that, a couple were arrested. In their committal hearing it was said that they'd had six children, were 'desperate' to have another, had unsuccessfully tried to adopt, and this was a random grab to try and get another to bring up. You can just imagine them hearing about the baby's relations and realising that they'd grabbed a bundle of trouble.
They were put in a special glassed-in dock, and it was asked that they each be put into prison special protection units -- like witnesses in danger or child molesters or imprisoned police -- to protect them from possible revenge by associates of the Barbaros. Guiseppe (Joe), the father, was seen mouthing threats to them across the court.
Now comes another twist. Because the baby's father was seen on television at the committal hearing, he was recognised as the father of two children in Canberra (Australian Capital Territory), from a current relationship of seven years' standing, with another woman. Neither woman had any idea of the other.
*** UPDATE ***
(More twists than a barley sugar cane)
Joe (Guiseppe) was in custody in Victoria, but had been let out on bail. The New South Wales police were annoyed that they hadn't been informed by Victoria Police or the courts that he was on bail, because they had warrants out on him, which they could have served if they'd known he wasn't in custody.
[It is apparently rather tricky to keep track of all the family because of the traditional naming practices. Every branch and generation has at least one each of a Giuseppe (Joe), Antonio (Tony) & Francesco (Frank).]
Meanwhile the one joke I've heard so far referred to a movie called 'Raising Arizona' where a couple kidnapped one child of sextuplets from a rich & powerful family in order to raise it as their own. This version was, naturally, going to be called 'Raising Montana'.
A friend's comment:
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