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The Boston Globe



Pressures mounted to end Justina Pelletier custody fight

When juvenile court judges and the state’s child-protection agency allow children in custody to return to their parents, there is supposed to be only one standard: the best interests of the child.

But political, legal, and financial factors appear to have also figured prominently in resolving the impasse in the 16-month-long custody battle over Connecticut teenager Justina Pelletier, and, some child welfare specialists argue, the factors may have played outsized roles. The case was locked in acrimony between the parents and the Department of Children and Families , and as recently as March the judge in the case deemed the parents unfit.

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