WASHINGTON – The baby boy being adopted by Oscar winners Angelina Jolie and Billy Bob Thornton is among 18 Cambodian children cleared by the Immigration and Naturalization Service for adoption by American families.
Jolie and Thornton, like other families, still must apply for a U.S. visa for their son, but the process is expected to be smooth since the INS has investigated the case of each child it has cleared.
In all, 121 Cambodian children have been cleared for adoption or completion of adoptions by 113 American families since Dec. 21, INS spokesman William Strassberger said Tuesday.
On that date, the INS stopped issuing visas for children adopted from Cambodia amid concerns that some were not genuine orphans. The action drew an outcry from families with pending adoptions and from some members of Congress.
Jolie, 26, and Thornton, 46, had previously said they met their 9 1/2 -month-old-son, Maddox, while visiting a Cambodian orphanage last November.
Jolie, who won a supporting actress Oscar for Girl, Interrupted, married Thornton in Las Vegas in May 2000. Thornton won his Oscar for the screenplay to Sling Blade.