Chinese police rescue 37 babies in trafficking bust

Police rescued 37 babies and a 3-year-old girl after busting a child trafficking ring in eastern China’s Shandong province, reported the state-run China Central Television.

The newborn babies, many suffering from HIV/AIDS and malnutrition, were sold for between 50,000 yuan to 80,000 yuan ($8,000 to $12,912 dollars). The boys fetched higher prices than girls, according to the online video report published on Tuesday.

Babies were often transported in large handbags and suitcases to prospective buyers. And they were allegedly fed instant noodles and leftover vegetables, according to Chinese state media.

Authorities have arrested 103 people, suspected of trafficking or purchasing the infants.

Police spotted a suspicious group of pregnant women being ushered into an abandoned factory in the city of Jining, last July, where they found baby diapers and other evidence of it being used as an “underground delivery room.”

“We noticed there has been some new developments in the methods for child trafficking related crimes,” Chen Shiqu, director of the Ministry of Public Security’s Anti-trafficking Office told CCTV.

“For example, some criminal gangs would send pregnant women who are about to give birth via public transport to another city. The babies are then sold after the women give birth,” says Chen.

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Maddy Taylor

Journalist and fact checker at The Pluto Daily. University of Miami Ohio alumni class of '09!