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89 children rescued in trafficking crackdown (2)

(China Daily)

08:34, December 26, 2012

Since September, Fujian police have discovered several major human trafficking gangs headed by Tan Guirong and Pu Tianhuang. Their activities were also found in some other provinces, such as Yunnan, Sichuan and Anhui, according to the ministry.

The criminal gangs used a strict management system, in which different people were assigned tasks such as buying, transporting, transiting and trafficking children, according to the ministry.

"Usually, the traffickers abducted children from Yunnan and Sichuan, then sent them to Fujian and Anhui for trafficking by train or long-distance coach," said Huang Shihai, a press officer from the ministry.

Chen said strong demand and huge profits fuel the child trafficking market.

In many parts of rural China, including Yunnan, Guizhou, Fujian and Sichuan provinces, couples with no children tend to "buy" or adopt abducted children, largely because they still believe in the importance of "carrying on the family line" and having "sons to support them when they are old", Chen said.

"In some remote villages, local residents even consider children trafficking as a good thing because they believe the traffickers will help them fulfill their dreams of … raising many children," he said.

A healthy male infant bought for 30,000 yuan ($4,810) in poverty-stricken provinces such as Yunnan can be sold for 70,000 to 90,000 yuan in some areas of the comparatively well-off provinces of Fujian and Guangdong, according to Wang Xizhang, deputy head of the criminal investigation department of Fujian Provincial Public Security Bureau.

Chen said police will adopt a "zero tolerance" attitude toward child trafficking, and conduct further DNA information matching to reunite more abducted children with their parents.

"Moreover, we will work with relevant government authorities, such as the civil affairs departments, to intensify investigation efforts and punish people who adopted abducted children or sold their own children," he said.

Since April 2009, when the ministry started a campaign to crack down on child trafficking, police on the Chinese mainland have broken up 11,000 child trafficking rings, rescuing 54,000 children, according to ministry.

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