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Two Haitian police officers sit next to Charisa Coulter, 24, of Boise, Idaho, one of the 10 Americans who were arrested while trying to bus children out of Haiti without proper documents or government permission, as she rests on a cot at the University of Miami's field hospital, near Port au Prince's international airport on Monday. Coulter, who's diabetic, initially thought her insulin had gone bad in the heat but now she's being treated for what she said is either severe dehydration or the flu.
If they were acting in good faith as the Americans claim "perhaps the courts will try to be more lenient with them," he said. Embassy officials would not say whether Washington would accept hosting judicial proceedings for the Americans, who are mostly from Idaho. Crowley said in Washington.
Photo by THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
told the AP by phone from the Dominican Republic, where the Baptists hoped to shelter the children in a rented beach hotel.
"They're treating me pretty good," she said. "I'm not concerned. I'm pretty confident that it will all work out."
10 Baptists could face justice in US
"One (9 year old) girl was crying, and saying, 'I am not an orphan. I still have my parents.' And she thought she was going on a summer camp or a boarding school or something like that," said George Willeit, a spokesman for SOS Children's Village, which runs the orphanage where they were taken.
The arrested Americans' churches are part of the Southern Baptist Convention, America's largest Protestant denomination, which has extensive humanitarian programs worldwide, but they decided to mount their own "rescue mission" following the earthquake.
"There is no air conditioning, no electricity. It is very disturbing," Attorney Jorge Puello Nike Hats Blue
In Washington, the American Red Cross said a waiting list of 1,000 flights for Haiti's airport is limiting delivery of relief supplies.
One of the Americans, Charisa Coulter of Boise, Idaho, was treated Monday at a field hospital for either dehydration or the flu. Looking pale as she lay on a green Army cot, the 24 year old Coulter, was being guarded by two Haitian police officers.
PORT AU PRINCE, Haiti Haiti's prime minister said Monday that 10 Americans who tried to take a busload of undocumented Haitian children out of the country knew that "what they were doing was wrong" and could be prosecuted Nike Hat Snapback
Puello said they came from a collapsed orphanage. Their detained spokeswoman, Laura Silsby, said they were "just trying to do the right thing," but she conceded she had not obtained the required passports, birth certificates and adoption certificates for them a near impossible challenge in the post quake mayhem.
"Once we know all the facts, we will determine what the appropriate course is, but the judgment is really up to the Haitian government," he said.
Haitian officials insist some prosecution is needed to help deter child trafficking, Adidas Hat Pink
A Haitian police officer instructs a person outside the police headquarters in the international airport of Port au Prince, Monday, Feb. 1, 2010. Ten Americans remain under arrest in this police facility, after they were trying to bus children out of Haiti without proper documents or government permission last Friday. One of them, Charisa Coulter, 24, of Boise, Idaho, was temporarily transferred to a field hospital nearby, to treat her for what she said is either severe dehydration or the flu. (AP Photo/Rodrigo Abd)
"It is clear now that they were trying to cross the border without papers. It is clear now that some of the children have live parents," Bellerive said. "And it is clear now that they knew what they were doing was wrong."
After their arrest Friday near the border, the church group members were placed in two small concrete rooms in the same judicial police headquarters building where ministers have makeshift offices and give disaster response briefings.
which many fear will flourish in the chaos caused by the devastating Jan. 12 quake. The government and aid groups are still struggling to get food, water, shelter and basic health care to hundreds of thousands of survivors, and many parents are desperate to get help for their children. diplomats have had "unlimited" access to the 10 detainees, and will monitor any court proceedings, said Crowley. They have not yet been charged.
Bellerive said that without the documents, the children were unlikely to reach the United States, as some of their families might have hoped.
Members of the church group insisted they were only trying to save abandoned and traumatized children but appeared to lack any significant experience with Haiti, international charity work or international adoption regulations.
FILE In this Saturday, Jan. 30, 2010 file photo, Americans, from left: Steve McMullen, Jim Allen, Carla Thompson, Silas Thompson, Paul Thompson, Laura Silsby, Drew Culberth and Nicole Lankford stand at police headquarters in the international airport of Port au Prince. Haitian officials said Monday, Feb. Baptists to the United States for prosecution after they were arrested trying to take 33 children out of the country without government permission. (AP Photo/Ramon Espinosa, file)
in the United States. justice, since most government buildings including Haiti's courts were crippled by the monster earthquake.
The 33 kids, ranging in age from 2 months to 12 years, arrived with their names written in tape on their shirts at a children's home where some told aid workers they have surviving parents. Haitian officials said they were trying to reunite them.
Investigators have been trying to Atlanta Hawks Hats determine how the Americans got the children, and whether any of the traffickers that have plagued the impoverished country were involved.
The prime minister said some of those parents may have knowingly given their kids to the Americans in hopes they would reach the United States a not uncommon wish for poor families in a country that already had an estimated 380,000 orphans before the quake.
Haiti's overwhelmed government has halted all adoptions unless they were in motion before the earthquake amid fears that parentless or lost children are more vulnerable than ever to being seized and sold. Sex trafficking has been rampant in Haiti.
In Haiti's first organized political demonstration since the quake, hundreds of people demanded that President Rene Preval resign. Participants called for the return of Jean Bertrand Aristide, the former priest who was ousted in a 2004 rebellion. The rally was organized by Aristide supporters.
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