Missouri Supreme Court says state broke its own laws

Tuesday, January 25, 2011 | 4:39 p.m. CST

JEFFERSON CITY — The Missouri Supreme Court said the state didn't follow its own laws in terminating the parental rights of a Guatemalan woman who was caught up in a 2007 immigration raid and allowing her son to be adopted by an American couple.

But Tuesday's decision doesn't automatically return the child to Encarnación Bail Romero. The court instead ordered the state to follow proper procedures and hold a new trial regarding Romero's parental rights.

Romero lost custody of her infant son and was sentenced to two years in federal prison after pleading guilty to aggravated identity theft following the sweep. She has been seeking to regain custody of her son since leaving prison last year.

The child has been living with a Missouri couple since he was about 1 year old.

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