Father of drowned tots “may sue State”

The grieving father of two young children drowned by their mother in Caxias, near Lisbon, last year, has spoken out against the stigma in this country of men being cast as villains in situations of domestic strife.

Nelson Ramos has told noticiasaominuto that he is in fact “pondering” whether he should sue the State over the way the concerns that he had for the welfare of his children were handled.

Ramos believes that had authorities listened to him, his two beloved daughters would still be alive.

Instead, they listened to Sónia Lima now serving the maximum 25-year jail term for taking both her children to their deaths off Giribita beach, almost exactly a year ago (click here).

Ramos told the news service that he advised “the competent authorities” that “something was not right” about his estranged partner, and that she had shown herself to be “aggressive”.

“I was frightened that her behaviour would have serious consequences”, he said. But the complaint that he took out “took its time” and “no one did anything”.

Meantime, Lima alleged that Ramos was abusing his children.

The desperate father filed a request for custody, and the day afterwards, the girls’ mother took them into the water with her, letting go of four-year-old Vivianne early on, and then allowing the baby to lose her grip and disappear from sight.

Ramos clearly believes his former partner is not the only party responsible for the tragedy. “This cannot be allowed to happen again”, he told noticiasaominuto, saying he is considering filing a complaint against the State for the way public institutions “failed” in following up his complaints and in caring for the well-being of his children.

“The hypothesis of lodging a complaint against the State is on the table”, he told noticiasaominuto. “It is an hypothesis. Now that I have complained to the media, I should complain where I am meant to, which is the courts”.

Ramos also left a word of advice to other parents caught up in domestic battles involving children.

Parents should “move very quickly”, he said. “They should contact institutions as quickly as possible, and (contact) as many institutions as possible to move things along because actually everything (here) works very badly”.

Sónia Lima was condemned to ‘life imprisonment’ which carries a 25-year term for the murder of her children earlier this week.

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