A woman has been arrested in eastern China trying to buy a baby over the internet, according to a Chinese media report.
The 43-year-old woman from Chizhou in Anhui province said she did not know it was illegal to adopt through an online broker, news portal Kankanews.com reported on Monday.
“If I had known it’s illegal, I would not have done this kind of thing,” she was quoted as saying. “We are just ordinary people. [We did this] because in the past, among our friends and relatives, a lot of them paid money to adopt kids.”
According to the report, the woman had been searching for a child to adopt for many years and joined an online chat group set up to help people “realise their dreams” of being parents by assisting them to adopt abandoned babies.
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The woman paid 70,000 yuan (US$10,200) to the group’s administrator and arranged to meet him in neighbouring Zhejiang province to pick up a four-month-old baby girl, the report said.
Police said the child’s unmarried mother had contacted the administrator and asked him to find an adoptive family “in a better economic position”, not knowing the go-between profited from the handover.
When the woman arrived with her brother to pick up the child, the siblings were arrested, along with the broker, who had allegedly been involved in six other similar cases, the report said.
Civil affairs departments are the only authorities allowed to arrange adoptions in China but critics say the process is cumbersome and long.
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