UK & World News

  • 5 August 2014, 21:57

Oz Father Of Down's Baby 'Is Sex Offender'

The Thai surrogate mother of a baby born with Down's Syndrome says she would be happy if the child's twin returned to her - after police said the father was a convicted sex offender.

Pattaramon Chanbua, 21, has been caring for baby Gammy since his Australian biological parents reportedly rejected the infant, instead taking his twin sister to Australia alone.

The case has attracted intense public interest in Thailand and Australia, where allegations have surfaced about baby Gammy's biological father.

Speaking on condition of anonymity, a police officer told the Associated Press that the father was a convicted sex offender.

While Ms Chanbua has previously said she is happy to have Gammy's twin sister stay in Australia, the allegations have since caused her to have doubts.

"Personally, when I heard the news (about the allegations) I was shocked, but I can't say anything much right now.

"If she (baby girl) is happy, then I, as a mother, am also happy. I don't want to bring her back to suffer or anything.

"A mother would never want her child in trouble. But if she really cannot go on living there, then I'm very happy to have her back in my arms."

Ms Chanbua claims the Australian parents wanted her to have an abortion once medical tests revealed Gammy had Down's Syndrome, but she refused because of her beliefs as a Buddhist.

But the parents allege they were not told their healthy daughter had a twin brother.

The father told the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) they had "a lot of trouble" with the surrogacy agency, and that the process had "taken every cent we have".

Ms Chanbua has promised to "never abandon" seven-month-old Gammy and to raise him as her own.

"I never thought of having an abortion, I never thought to abandon him. I love him as my own baby ... he is my baby. I love him very much," she said.

Australia's Prime Minister Tony Abbott described the treatment of Gammy as "tragic".

"This is a tragic human situation. It's an absolutely tragic human situation," he said.

"I don't think there'd be anyone in the country who wouldn't be really cut up about what's happening here."

A Hope for Gammy fundraising website has so far raisedmore than $233,000 to pay for the boy's medical needs.

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