Russian maternity ward to compensate parents for child swap

31st October 2011, Comments 0 comments

A Russian maternity hospital that mixed up newborn girls, giving them to the "wrong" parents 12 years ago, will have to pay each couple nearly $100,000, a court ruled Monday.

"The court ruled to pay each family three million rubles ($99,000)," a court spokeswoman in the Urals industrial town of Kopeisk told AFP.

The mistake was discovered earlier this year when one of the couples began divorce proceedings and the wife wanted to prove her husband's paternity so that he would agree to pay child support.

Tests showed that neither Yulia Belyaeva nor her husband were their daughter's biological parents.

Belyaeva went to the police, who confirmed that her biological daughter was being raised by another family.

In September, Belyaeva joined forces with the man who is raising her biological daughter, Nigmatullo Iskandarov, an ethnic Tajik, to sue the Kopeisk maternity hospital.

The two reacted to Monday's verdict with mixed feelings.

"We don't need any money," Belyaeva said in televised remarks, while Iskandarov indicated that the two families would try to raise the children together.

They had initially demanded five million rubles each, the court spokeswoman said.

© 2011 AFP

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