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Baby-selling orphanage in Hunan cracked down
By Guan Xiaomeng (Chinadaily.com.cn)
Updated: 2005-11-24 15:56

The local police of Qidong County in Central China's Hunan Province announced the crackdown on a baby-trade gang November 23, with most of the suspected being heads and staff of orphanages around Hunan.

Earlier the local police had arrested a man suspected of "selling" babies to orphanages. The man confessed to having sold the babies he had abducted to some nearby orphanages at 800 to 1,200 yuan (US$99.06-148.59) apiece.

The man said the orphanages then asked the government for money to "bring up" these babies. Meanwhile, they "sold" the poor children to other orphanages at prices as high as 8,000 to 30,000 yuan (US$990.57 to 3,714.62).

The police arrested the head, the accountant, and a driver of the local orphanages in Hengyang County as well as some other suspects, while also confiscating a car they used to transport babies. Now 27 suspects are in custody.

A man claiming to be a staff member of one of the local orphanages in Hengyang gave clues on the condition of anonymity. He said at an orphanage in Changcha, capital city of Hunan Province, a "regular customer" of the Hengyang orphanages paid 60,000 yuan (US$ 70.86) for five babies on November 19.

It is reported that the Hengyang orphanages have been for years "selling" babies mainly to Changsha, Chenzhou, and Zhuzhou of Hunan Province and South China's Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region and Guangdong Province.

Law experts say some orphanages attempt to "buy" more babies for two reasons: First they will get more government fund if they have more babies to raise; and second, they can sell babies to sterile couples.

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