This is an appeal to all rugby lovers everywhere to rally round and help one of our own. The below is from Simon Williams, an American rugby player with Miami Tridents:
“On August 9th 2010 my 16 month old son, Noan Pedrosa-Williams, went with his mother on a two week trip to Brazil. He never came home. My wife stated that she would simply keep Noan in Brazil, so that she could live with her family and cut me out of my son’s life.
In November, the court in Miami issued an order that Noan be returned to the USA, but my wife has ignored it. My Brazilian lawyer found evidence that my wife and her family had been making preparations for this action from before my son was born. In Brazil it is NOT a crime for a Brazilian woman to abduct the child of a non-Brazilian spouse. IT IS NOT A CRIME. IT IS LEGAL!! Welcome to my nightmare. Welcome to Brazilian Kangaroo court!”
Simon currently cannot go to Brazil as his wife has filed a false police report which could lead to his arrest if he enters Brazil. He is hoping that the rugby community can assist him in creating the necessary pressure on the authorities, going on to say, “My son and rugby are my two great passions. I was a less-than-average player at best but, even so, I have been very lucky to meet, play with and enjoy the special camaraderie of fellow players from many countries around the world. I have forged friendships that will last longer than my lifetime. That is a privilege that only rugby players understand.
“But, despite my love of rugby, all that I really hoped to enjoy in my life was to be a great Dad.
“My dream was to one day lace up my boots so that Noan could proudly watch his father play even just a single game of rugby and then for me to proudly get to watch him grow up and play our sport as well.”
He has filed an appeal with The Hague but Brazil have a very poor record of complying with treaties relating to Child Abduction. Simon Williams is not looking for any material or financial assistance. He is simply appealing to the rugby community to do whatever they can to publicise his predicament as widely as possible, whether it be by alerting press and politicians or simply by spreading the word far and wide so that it may eventually reach the ears of somebody with the power to help.
We at The Rugby Blog would urge any of you to forward this on to as many people as you can from both within and outside the rugby community, and if anyone has another publication for additional exposure, please use it.
“Please forward on to every rugby contact that you have, every contact that you have, wherever they may be, and please ask them to do the same. I need as much support as I can to get media coverage of what has happened to Noan and to make sure he comes home.
“Thank you for your help. I apologize for my horrible situation. I apologize even greater for asking for help in this way. I simply am a below average rugby player BUT a desperate father who only wants his abducted son to be returned to his home and get to see his Dad play rugby.
“One man’s voice is not loud enough to be heard by itself. I humbly ask for your help and support to make my voice louder. Thank you from the bottom of my heart. I would be honoured to one day, play and enjoy a beer, with any of you.”