According to the Beijing Youth Daily online, seven baby traffickers were arrested on Aug. 20 in the eastern province of Jiangsu. The police traced the 10 babies back to Liangshan, which is located in Sichuan Province in southwest China.
The investigation revealed that the babies’ families had sold the children for the equivalent of 10 years of income; their typical annual income is between 2,000 and 3,000 yuan ($320-480). None of the families came to get their babies, possibly for fear of having to surrender the money or pay fines for having more than three children.
An officer called Yu Shaobin who visited Liangshan told the Daily that there was no furniture in the houses there, and people own hardly anything, not even bowls or chopsticks. Yu said the children he saw were like stock animals, playing naked in the dirt. “For these families, one less child is one less burden,” he added.
As most families in the area have more children than permitted by local policy, traffickers have been exploiting them, and buying babies, especially boys, to sell to people in cities who cannot have their own children.
One of the traffickers admitted to having bought children from poor areas of Sichuan for 20,000 to 30,000 yuan ($3,200-4,800) and selling them in Jiangsu and Shandong provinces for around 40,000 to 50,000 ($6,400-8000).
Social welfare houses refused to take the children, because they can only claim financial support for orphans and abandoned children. The police were forced to leave the babies with their new families.