The father of baby Gammy “hangs his head in shame” over his convictions for child sex offences but says his daughter is 100 per cent safe with him.
David and Wendy Farnell have custody of Gammy’s twin sister, who was brought to South Bunbury in Western Australia from Thailand shortly after 21-year-old Pattaramon Chanbua gave birth in December.
Ms Chanbua says the couple abandoned Gammy because he has Down syndrome, but they have denied this.
Gammy’s parents have spoken out for the first time about the controversial surrogacy case and his convictions for child sex offences.
“I have been convicted of child sex offences and I hang my head in shame for that and I am deeply regretful and I am so sorry to those people,” he said on the Nine Network.
The 56-year-old, who also has three adult children, said that he realised he had done the wrong thing after thinking how devastated he would be if someone sexually abused his children.
He also credited counselling he received in prison for stopping his sexual urges towards children.
“They have 100 per cent stopped, I don’t have this urge to do anything anymore,” he said.
When asked if his seven-month-old daughter would be safe from him, Farnell said: “She will be 100 per cent safe because I know I would do everything in the world to protect my little girl,” he said.
I come home from work some days and Wendy has our little girl all in blue, because she wants still to remember the little boy.
Farnell’s wife said she trusted her husband 100 per cent and described him as a very good husband and father.
Farnell started crying and shaking when asked if there was a danger the couple could lose their baby daughter.
“I hope she won’t be (taken from us).”
Farnell said if there was any chance of that happening, he would remove himself from the family’s life.
The couple also denied they abandoned baby Gammy.
“We wanted to bring him with us,” Farnell said.
“It’s been very stressing. We miss our little boy.
“I come home from work some days and Wendy has our little girl all in blue, because she wants still to remember the little boy.”
The couple said after they were told Ms Chanbua was pregnant with twins they were “over the moon” but this changed when they were told late in the pregnancy one had Down syndrome.
By this stage it was too late for an abortion and Farnell said they were angry that tests were not done earlier and they had wanted the surrogacy agency to give them their money back.
However, he denied the couple forced Ms Chanbua to keep the baby.
“We never agreed to that.
“We said we want both babies to be born and we will think about this.
“I know it sounds very, very heartless, but I never meant to hurt anybody, like I can’t really explain, I can’t really put it in words. We never said, `you can have this baby’.”
The couple said Ms Chanbua threatened that if they took Gammy she would keep both babies and this forced them to leave with only the baby girl.
“She said that if we try to take our little boy, she’s going to get the police and she’s going to come and take our little girl … and she’s going to keep both of the babies,” Farnell said.
However, when questioned about what they had done since leaving Thailand to get Gammy back the couple admitted that so far they had only spoken to Australian authorities to ensure their baby daughter was legally theirs.
The couple contacted their surrogacy agency to send a few thousand dollars to care for Gammy, but admitted they had not contacted anyone about how their son was doing since returning to Australia.
The couple say they intend to return to Thailand once the issues surrounding their daughter are resolved.
Meanwhile, Ms Chanbua who gave birth to Gammy is now denying that Chinese-born Mrs Farnell, who has so far been portrayed as the child’s biological mother, has any blood link to the baby.
Ms Chanbua told Fairfax Media the egg implanted in her came from a Thai woman and was supplied through a surrogacy agency.
“Yes, the sperm came from (Farnell) but the egg did not belong to the Chinese woman,” she said.