1.Everyone shall possess the right to freely express and publicise his thoughts in words, images or by any other means, as well as the right to inform others, inform himself and be informed without hindrance or discrimination 2.Exercise of the said rights shall not be hindered or limited by any type or form of censorship Constitution of the Portuguese Republic, Article 37.º

English child taken into care: passerby found her wandering

THE IDENTITY of the mother of an eight-year-old British girl who has been placed into protective care at a children’s home in Loulé while on holiday in the Algarve has been revealed.

Social services were alerted to a girl named Ariella d’Gama being in danger by residents of the apartment where she and her mother Stephanie Bysh were staying in the Lagos area.

A spokesman for the PSP police told The Resident today (Thursday): “Ariella was taken to the Lagos PSP station in the evening of August 16 by someone whom I believe was a neighbour or friend of her mother’s friends here in the Algarve.”

The Resident has discovered that the girl was allegedly found by an unidentified Icelandic man while wandering the streets of Lagos with a case. Apparently, Ariella told this passerby that her mother was in a bar in the area at which point they both went looking for her. Not having found her mother, the passerby accompanied Ariella back to the apartment where she was staying.

The Resident has also learned that it was one of the residents of that same apartment who took the girl to the local police station after realising that her mother was often drunk. A source told The Resident: “It is believed that Stephanie Bysh drank four to five litres of alcohol a day.”

The PSP spokesman added that Stephanie Bysh showed signs of being drunk when she arrived at the PSP station later that evening. “Although we did not carry out a breathalyser test because the mother was not driving, it was clear that she showed signs of being drunk,” said the spokesman.

Ariella was initially taken to a children’s refuge in Faro for protection before being transferred to a more permanent facility for children in Loulé on August 19.

Luis Villas Boas, the director of the children’s refuge Refúgio Aboim Ascensão in Faro, told The Resident: “Officials from the department of social services brought an eight-year-old girl of British nationality to us at 5am on August 17. The girl stayed here for 72 hours and was then taken by social services to a facility in Loulé on August 19.”

The mother of the child was confirmed as being 44 years old and from England by a spokesperson at Barlavento hospital. “She was brought by ambulance to the hospital on August 21 suffering with kidney problems. She was discharged on August 25.”

According to Portuguese media, the mother suffered from depression and alcohol dependence.

Both mother and child are said to be in good health now, according to a spokesman from the Foreign and Commonwealth Office in London (FCO).

The girl remains in care in Loulé and her mother visited her at the facility on Tuesday, August 26, under supervision.

A source from the facility in Loulé where the girl is now staying told The Resident: “We can confirm that the girl is here and that she is well. She will remain at our home until a court decides otherwise.”

A spokesman from the FCO told The Resident: “No official charges are being brought against the mother who we believe is on holiday with her daughter and no other members of family.”

The mother is due to appear in Portimão family court on September 5 where a judge will talk to her informally about the events surrounding her daughter being taken into care.

In a separate incident in May, three British children were also taken into temporary care at the Refúgio Aboim Ascenção when their mother was hospitalised after a night out in the Algarve.

Eamon and Antoinette McGuckin, from Maghera, near Belfast, left Portugal before they were due to appear in court in Faro to speak to a judge about the night in question.

Source: Portugal Resident


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  1. We wait to see if Ariella d’Gama mother´s fly home before the court.

    Gama? Ariella? Seems no true brit...

  2. It was reported that Miliband arranged McCanns appearance on stage in Strasbourg whilst named 'arguidos' in their own child's diappearance.

    He also spoke in defence of the Irish couple who fled Portugal and evaded a Court appearance.

    Miliband had access to overwhelming evidence on police files in Madeleine's case.

    He also intervened in police procedures involving the Irish couple.

    It was reported that the Foreign Office gave orders for "no support to be given to Murat" when named arguido.

  3. The story's changed !!

    Sol - 'concerned neighbours alerted the authorities to a child being left alone in a pension'.

    Re-written to - child found 'in the street' by an unidentified Islandic passer-by.

    According to Mitchell and the British authorities, leaving children at risk, without parental supervision in a foreign country is totally acceptable. Portuguese & British Law states otherwise.

    Will the Foreign Office stamp on Portuguese & British Law and rescue yet another parent guilty of child abandonment ?

    Yes, if it suits the Government's purpose.


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