In France, a mother has the right to deliver a baby anonymously. This is what happened when Yoan Delorme was in prison and his ex-girlfriend gave birth. The child was handed over to the state and two months later placed in an adoptive family. The child is now 18 months old and Delorme is claiming his paternal rights. But it’s too late.  Channel News Asia reports that Delorme had time to claim rights and interest in taking custody of his son, but was a full three months too late.

French law states that complete anonymity for birthing mothers is legal. A woman may deliver the child under the name Mrs. X, leave the birth father’s name off the birth certificate, and may not be liable for any expense incurred in child birth. It becomes the state’s responsibility to cover all costs.

Delorme is devastated that his case is going nowhere. “It is the theft of a child . . . he is my son, my blood, my whole life,” he stated after the ruling, according to the Channel News Asia report.  The court, ruling in favor of the child’s best interest, claimed that it would be “destructive to remove a child that is 18 months old from parents he calls mum and dad.”