Tuesday, 31 December 2013

Shaanxi obstetrician on trial for selling six babies to human traffickers

Zhang Shuxia, an obstetrician who allegedly sold new born children to human traffickers, is on trial at the Intermediate People's Court in Weinan City in northwest China's Shaanxi Province.
Zhang is charged with selling six children between November 2011 and July 2013 with one of them dying during the commission of the offence. Zhang allegedly gained tens of thousands of yuan from the trafficking.
On July 16, 2013, Dong Shanshan, a local resident in Shaanxi Province's Fuping County gave birth to a baby boy at the Fuping Maternal and Child Health Care Hospital. Zhang, who was deputy director of the hospital's maternity department, told her and her husband Lai Guofeng that the child suffered from syphilis and hepatitis B transmitted from the mother and would not survive.
Zhang did not let the couple see their baby but said he had already been taken away.
Lai questioned the doctor's diagnosis and took his wife to another county hospital for syphilis and hepatitis B tests the following day. Two days later, the test results showed his wife was free of both diseases.
On July 20, Lai contacted police who investigated and found the baby in central China's Henan Province 20 days after he was born.
Zhang was detained by police and confessed she had sold the baby for 21,600 yuan (US$ 3,500) to two people from north Shanxi province on of July 17.
Police obtained surveillance video that showed Zhang taking a baby out of the hospital.
The probe led to allegations of far more serious graft as other local couples claim they had been duped into giving up their newborn babies.
Wang Yanyan, a farmer in Fuping, said she gave birth twins on May 31 and was told by the doctor the babies suffered from "congenital diseases" and would not live past three years.
"She told us to give up the babies and never let us look at them," Wang said.
She said she had several prenatal checkups during her pregnancy and the results showed she and her fetuses were normal.
In August, police said eight other suspects had been detained in connection with alleged trafficking cases involving Zhang dating back to 2006. Health issues cited by Zhang in convincing the parents to surrender their children included heart problems, cerebral palsy and missing genitals.
Meanwhile, three county government officials — deputy head of the Fuping County government Li Leiping, Fuping Health Bureau chief Ji Xinmin and deputy chief Bian Cimei — have been sacked over the baby trafficking scandal, the Fuping County government announced.
It reported that most of the affected families hailed from the village of Xue in Fuping County -- the home of Zhang and her mother.
The National Health and Family Planning Commission has called for severe punishment for those involved and also urged improvements to the management of the medical system in Shaanxi Province.
Source: Women of China

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