Christine Svenningsen, who lives on an island estate in Westchester, N.Y., first adopted a baby girl from China and named her Emily, according to the Daily News’ Stephen Rex Brown and Dareh Gregorian. She already had five biological children.
But after her husband died, the woman sent the 8-year-old to live with another family and tried to cut her out of her out of the family’s $250 million estate, the Daily News reported.
She was shot down by the state appeals court, which ruled Emily deserves a portion of the estate.
Svenningsen also adopted a boy from China named Eric, but soon after he was adopted again by a couple from New Jersey, the Daily News reported, citing court documents.
“I couldn’t handle seven children,” Svenningsen reportedly said in a deposition.
Emily’s new mom, Maryann Campbell, alleged in court papers that Svenningsen used “Draconian” disciplinary methods to punish Emily.
Meanwhile, Svenningsen said that Emily had major behavioral and emotional problems. These are refuted by her current school and family.
When she was 7, for “disobeying major house rules,” Emily was allegedly forced to sleep in a tent for a week, according to the Daily News, which again cited court documents. She was allegedly taken to the hospital covered in bug bites.
She was also allegedly separated from her siblings at mealtime, according to the Daily News.
Campbell said she had a “chance encounter” with Svenningsen and told her that Emily would like to see her former siblings. She claims her request was denied.
Wealthy Widow Tried Unsuccessfully To Cut Adopted Chinese Daughter Out Of Her Estate
March 4, 2013