THE NAN FAMILY’S NIGHTMARE IN NORWAY CONTINUES…

On 15 Oct 2015, a classmate of Bianca Nan informed an after-school centre employee that Bianca was being abused by her parents. The after-school centre employee in turn, informed Norway’s child welfare system (NCWS). For the next 12 days, Bianca would say some very strange things to her parents, Michaela and Dumitru Nan, like for instance, I’m going to pack my luggage and go to another family, who will give me everything I want, and Dragos (Bianca’s younger brother) is coming with me, because that’s what was promised.

On 26 Oct 2015, Bianca’s teacher was informed by NCWS that Bianca would change school and that Bianca will be picked up in the morning. Bianca had already gone home, so unfortunately, the teacher couldn’t speak with her.

On 27 Oct 2015, at around 8.30am, the after-school centre employee entered the school and took Bianca away before she started her class, and before Bianca’s teacher could speak with her.

The school teacher, school director, and medical doctor at the school were not informed prior to being informed on 26 Oct 2015. Bianca’s school teacher was so surprised that she commented that if she had any reason to believe that Bianca wasn’t being looked after well, she would have informed the relevant authorities, but she was convinced that Bianca came from a very good home. Bianca’s teacher also questioned why the school was not informed much earlier about these accusations.

The teacher had to inform the rest of Bianca’s class that Bianca was moving to another school. Bianca’s classmates were shocked when they heard the news and couldn’t understand why she would want to leave her class friends, and why she didn’t even want to say goodbye. There was no leaving party.

Furthermore, in these 12 days, between the concern message being sent to NCWS and Bianca being taken away, the parents Michaela and Dumitru Nan were not contacted at all by NCWS. Everything took place without due process.

After Bianca was picked up from the school on 27 Oct 2015, the after-school centre employee put Bianca in a taxi and jumped in with her. The duration of the journey was around one hour, although it only takes around five-minutes to walk by foot from the school, to the child welfare office in Tromsø.

During this one-hour drive, Bianca was terrified and in a state of shock. The after-school centre employee told Bianca what she had to say when they reached the child welfare office. But, Bianca said in the car that she hadn’t been abused or hurt in any way from her mum and dad. The journey continued, and Bianca was then told by the after-school centre employee that if she didn’t admit that she was abused, then her parents would definitely go to prison.

Bianca was so scared, she just said what the after-school centre employee told her to say, believing that in doing so, her parents would not go to prison, and that the family would stay together. It must be noted that Bianca’s Norwegian language skills were not so good, as the family would always speak Romanian at home. Just to add, educationists in the main, recommend families to speak their native language at home, even when they live in a different language speaking country. There are many positive reasons for this, which I won’t go into here.

Following these abuse accusations, NCWS did a thorough investigation with the school, kindergarten and many other people who had been in contact with the Nan children and their parents. Every character witness confirmed that the Nan family were a very good family and that Bianca and Dragos were treated well by their parents. NCWS had no evidence, no proof and no witnesses. They didn’t have any incriminating evidence on the family, just false accusations, and NCWS were not at all interested in talking with Michaela or Dumitru about these allegations.

All the documents that the police required the parents to sign were in Norwegian, and a translator was not allowed for the seven-hour interrogation. Allegedly, statements that were documented by the police were added to, deleted, or changed. During the interrogation, Michaela and Dumitru were accused of violence towards their children and they were told that their children would never return home again.

Michaela and Dumitru were in complete shock at these false allegations and started to weep. A case worker then suggested to the grieving parents, that if they cannot cope with being without their children, they can provide expert help for them by contacting the mental hospital.

During one of the brief visits with their children in May 2016, Michaela and Dumitru were told by NCWS not to allow their children to show them (parents) so much love (which isn’t really possible, when it comes to love), but instead just to do an activity together without emotion. But, when Bianca and Dragos saw their mummy and daddy, they ran into their parents’ arms and gave them hugs, kisses and cuddles. In fact, the case workers at this particular meeting informed Michaela and Dumitru that they had to break the bond between Michaela and Dumitru and their children, because the love and connection between them all was so strong.

Therefore, the short meetings between the parents and their children were reduced, from thereon. However, the children were still so excited to see their mum and dad on future visits. Furthermore, case workers were continuously replaced for this case (10 different employees in one year), which could suggest that NCWS were looking for a case worker to break this family, but fortunately that failed.

Doctors who examined both Bianca and her brother Dragos on 28 October 2015 found absolutely no signs of abuse, no marks on their bodies, but in court, the prosecuting lawyer got around this fact, by saying that the children were probably hit with their clothes on.

When Bianca and Dragos were in child welfare ‘care’, both children later confirmed that they were abused. After this ordeal, in the relative safety of Romania, Bianca gave her testimony of everything that had happened to her in ‘care’.

For example, when Bianca had her hair cut in NCWS, her hair was pulled viciously with every cut. Bianca was so scared of crying, because of the fear of having her hair pulled even more. It was also highlighted that the Nan family’s faith as Christians had no bearing on the decision even though, in care, Bianca was continually told by one carer that there was no God and she came from a monkey.

Imagine your children being removed without any good reason, and then split up with the intent of destroying their identities, and their relationship as siblings. Now, imagine being able to see your children four times a year for just a few hours at a time. The Nan family lived out this terrifying nightmare, for a year.

On 22 October 2016, the news that Bianca and Dragos were coming home, flooded social media channels, after the Nan family won the child welfare case comfortably. At this point, the justice system in Norway looked like it was going in the right direction.

On 2 December 2016, a favourable decision was also given by a Norwegian court in the criminal case, and as a result, the case was closed, and the Nan family thought that their nightmare in Norway was over. The court dismissed unfounded accusations from Tromsø brought by the Norwegian police towards the Nan family regarding abuse and violence. But, the police appealed on 27 December 2016, and the court of appeal, approved this latest appeal 5-6 months later, although legally the court needs to approve an appeal within the first month after the trial. In court, a comment was raised about the late acceptance of this case by the court of appeal, because it passed the legal deadline, but the prosecuting lawyer and judge just laughed together about it, in front of the family.

In late December 2017, and without any evidence or proof, Dumitru and Michaela were found guilty of violating the penal code and sentenced to prison.

On 31 July 2018, Dumitru Nan served a three-month prison sentence. Dumitru served his sentenced and left prison on 30 September 2018. Two days after leaving prison, Dumitru was called up by the prison itself, and was told that a mistake had been made and he had to report back to the prison on 30 October 2018.

Dumitru asked politely whether this mistake could be put in writing and that this new appointment could be confirmed as well. In response to this request, Dumitru was told that everyone was on holiday for a week in that department, so it wasn’t possible for Dumitru to receive this unexpected and shocking news in writing. It was shocking because all the documentations and letters clearly stated that the sentence ended on 30 September 2018.

Dumitru was told that if he doesn’t report back to the prison on the 30 October 2018, then the sentence would be doubled. Bianca and Dragos have always desperately wanted to be with their daddy and mummy, but the Norwegian authorities will not let go of this precious family. When the children were in care, they were always begging their mum and dad to take them back home.

The question is, are the Norwegian authorities once again using revenge techniques to justify destroying a normal caring family, where no abuse and violence took place?

Right from the start, the Nan family were treated like sub-humans, and the children’s needs were completely overlooked by the Norwegian authorities. A thriving and loving family has been dehumanised and destroyed. Both Michaela and Dumitru Nan have both lost good jobs and their home in Norway and both Bianca and Dragos show many signs of trauma through a destructive, heartless and unnecessary ordeal.

The Nan family case has been sent to the ECtHR but that takes time to process. The Romanian court won’t get involved because Norway still has a case opened on the Nan family, which means that they can’t open a new one at the same time in Romania. In recent years, the Norwegian authorities have been influencing the judicial system in Romania more and more with a very generous funding initiative through EEA grants. In addition, the EEA Grants website also states that 2,696 legal professionals and court staff have been trained in new criminal codes, human rights and court management in Romania. Could this be a reason why the Romanian courts choose not to help families like the Nan family? Moreover, is the Romanian court system going in the same flawed direction as the Norwegian system? Let’s hope not.

Please pray for the Nan family and for Dumitru not to have to serve another pointless prison sentence, and for common sense and justice to return to Norway soon.

Michaela Nan’s short speech just after she returned safely with her children to Romania.

 

[Fotos: Nan, private]