12/15/2004

The Mother of all Deception

As someone who has been the victim of child-support fraud, the story of Steve Barreras really caught and held my attention:

Last week, Viola Trevino carried her 5-year-old "daughter" into an Albuquerque court to satisfy a judgeÂ’'s demand to produce the child.

Complications arose.

One: Trevino had kidnapped the child moments before to pass off as her daughter.

Two: the "real" daughter never existed.

Three: the "father" and ex-husband Steve Barreras had paid $20,000 in child support.

Four: the system finally noticed Trevino was lying.
Fortunately for Mr. Barreras, he had the financial resources to fight long enough and hard enough for the truth to finally be exposed. He was able to hire a lawyer and a private investigator to support his claims that the child in question never existed. The fraud finally imploded when his ex-wife kidnapped another woman's child in desperation after being ordered by a judge to produce the child.

Other fathers are not so fortunate, and are at the limited mercy of a child-support infrastructure that tends to treat fathers like criminals. Cheers to Mr. Barreras for his perseverance in refusing to be victimized. There is talk that he will initiate lawsuits against any and all parties involved in the fraud. I take a generally dim view of lawsuits in general, but I will confess to hoping that Mr. Barreras takes his antagonists to the cleaners.