Gammy’s father seeks access to charity money

Baby Gammy

Baby Gammy’s biological father is trying to access charity money raised for the Down syndrome boy’s medical costs.

Last year, Gammy made international headlines when West Australian couple Wendy Li and David Farnell left him in Thailand with his surrogate mother but took home his healthy twin sister, Pipah.

A total of $235,062 (€210,895) was raised to help Gammy via the GoFundMe website and Hands Across the Water foundation.

Hands Across the Water foundation founder Peter Baines revealed Farnell was seeking access to the money.

“We have no information as to the justification the Farnells, or their legal team, are making to support the application for access to the funds,” Baines said.

“We take this matter very seriously and we are doing all that we can to defend this action to ensure the money donated remains for the care of baby Gammy, which we believe was the intent of those who so generously donated the funds.”

Baines said the foundation had developed a long-term strategy to support Gammy based on advice about his current and future needs.

So far, the funds have been used to buy Gammy’s Thai family a more suitable home and to pay for his medical costs.

Farnell, who is a convicted child sex offender, still has custody of Pipah following an investigation by the Western Australia Department for Child Protection.

Minister Helen Morton said in November that a comprehensive safety and wellbeing assessment had been conducted and a safety plan had been developed for Pipah.

Yesterday, a department spokeswoman confirmed that the matter remained with the family court.

Premier Colin Barnett said he was surprised to hear the Farnells were trying to access the money but did not think that they would be successful.


Lifestyle

Bryan Stevenson is the American civil rights lawyer who provided the inspiration for the newly-released film Just Mercy. Esther McCarthy spoke to him in IrelandReal-life lawyer Bryan Stevenson on inspiring Just Mercy

So I’ve booked my holidays. And before you ask, yes, I’m basing it around food and wine. I’ll report back in July, but I thought readers might be interested in my plan should you be thinking about a similar holiday.Wines to pick up on a trip to France

Esther N McCarthy is on a roll for the new year with sustainable solutions, cool citruses and vintage vibes.Wish List: Sustainable solutions, cool citruses and vintage vibes

They have absolutely nothing really to do with Jerusalem or indeed with any type of artichoke, so what exactly are these curious little tubers?Currabinny Cooks: Exploring the versatility of Jerusalem artichokes

More From The Irish Examiner