A MAN who gave away his child’s “birthright” to a charity after the couple had been married was sentenced today to 16-and-a-half years in prison.
The 35-year-old man, who cannot be named for legal reasons, had pleaded guilty to the offence at the Family Court in the northern state of Victoria.
His lawyer told the court that the man was “absolutely devastated” by the case.
“He was the father of two children and his wife was a widow who had just lost her husband and child,” the lawyer said.
“This man gave away a part of his family and the value of that part of the family was enormous to him.”
The man was given the birthright to the couple’s four children and the woman’s other two children from previous marriages.
The court heard the man had two children with his wife and one with his son.
The lawyer said the couple were “very close” and the couple “were always there for each other”.
“They have a special bond,” he said.
The judge said the offence of giving away a birthright had been “deeply offensive” to both the man and the family.
“You gave away the birthrights of your children, of their parents, of your spouse,” he told the man.
“It is a very grave offence, one which is very serious and that is a deeply offensive offence to the family of the person you are giving up.”
The judge also sentenced the man to eight years’ probation.
The man is due to be released from prison on September 25.