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Agency Accused of Duping Families is Winding Down Business

Agency Accused of Duping Families is Winding Down Business



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SALT LAKE CITY (AP) -- A northern Utah adoption agency accused of tricking Samoan parents into giving their children to U.S. families probably will be out of business when the case goes to trial, an attorney said.

Focus on Children, based in Wellsville, is transferring adoption cases to other organizations, Rebecca Hyde said. "I suspect at the time this case goes to trial, Focus on Children may cease to exist as an entity," Hyde said in federal court Monday.

The agency and seven people were indicted on 135 charges earlier this year.

Adoptive families in the United States were told they were getting children who were orphans or were living in dire conditions with parents who could not care for them, according to prosecutors.

Birth families, in turn, were told their children would stay in touch, receive an American education and return to Samoa when they turned 18, prosecutors allege.

The agency has pleaded not guilty. No trial date has been set.

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Information from: The Salt Lake Tribune

(Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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