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CNN Today

Elian Gonzalez Case: Court Denies Ad Litem Motion

Aired April 27, 2000 - 2:06 p.m. ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.

NATALIE ALLEN, CNN ANCHOR: There has apparently been another ruling by the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals in Atlanta involving the Elian Gonzalez Case.

And CNN's Mike Boettcher joins us with that -- Mike.

MIKE BOETTCHER, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, Natalie, just a few minutes ago, the 11th circuit ordered -- issued an order that appears to be responding to the motion filed two days ago by the Miami relatives of Elian Gonzalez.

Now in that motion they asked that they be given access to the child, that Cuban officials, and psychiatrists, and doctors be barred from visiting the child; and there were several other aspects to that.

Basically the court said: plaintiff's motion is denied in all respects except one thing, we clarify that, stating briefly, we ordered the plaintiff, which is Elian Gonzalez, not to go any place in the United States that enjoys diplomatic immunity. Basically what they are doing is maintaining the status quo.

They're saying that Elian Gonzalez cannot leave the United States or go to the Cuban Interest Section, or any other embassy where he might have diplomatic immunity and could be out of the jurisdiction of the United States.

Now also in that motion two days ago, the Miami relatives also asked that a -- an independent guardian, or a guardian ad litem, be appointed to look after the well-being of the child. Now while in this little two page order, the 11th circuit doesn't directly address that. They seem to say what government is doing now is OK.

Let me read this to you, it says: "The government is offered to supply the court with bi-weekly reports from a psychiatrist retained by the government to monitor and examine plaintiff regarding plaintiff's well being, health and condition. In addition, the government represents that they are enlisting a social worker to monitor the care and condition of plaintiff in his current custodial arrangement. The government offers to provide the court with bi- weekly reports from this social worker once this arrangement has been confirmed. The court accepts these offers and requires the government to submit these reports. Motion granted in part and denied in part, so ordered." So it looks like in terms of the guardian, the court is not going to order a guardian ad litem appointed. They say what the government is offering now is fine, that's our interpretation of it at this point. It's a little bit confusing, and also they are denying other aspects of that motion filed two days ago by Lazaro Gonzalez, which would restrict Cuban officials' access to the boy and give the Miami relatives access -- Natalie.

ALLEN: And Mike, do you know if the Miami relatives have anymore legal challenges to use or a course to use to try and see Elian during this interim time?

BOETTCHER: We don't know what else they may file, but there is one other thing that's still hanging here and that is the motion by Juan Miguel Gonzalez, the father of Elian, who has asked to be the sole legal representative in court, the sole voice of Elian Gonzalez.

Now that could have great ramifications, the Miami family is supposed to respond to that this afternoon. We are not sure there will be an ordered filed by the court on that since they are waiting for the Miami family to respond to the father's request.

But that could have ramifications for the whole issue of asylum, if he is the sole legal voice, he could change all of these filings that Elian has filed in conjunction with the Miami family in the weeks previous -- Natalie.

ALLEN: All right, Mike Boettcher, outside the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals, thanks.

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