A Chinese man is facing child trafficking charges after allegedly abducting his illegitimate son from his mistress and then selling the boy for just 44,000 yuan ($6,500) so he could settle his debt.
The 33-year-old father, identified only by his surname Chen, was said to have owed a total of 3 million yuan ($443,000) to creditors. He accumulated the large loan after a couple of business and stock investment failures.
Chen reportedly got beaten up by the lenders three days before deciding to snatch his 2-year-old son on October 17. He later sold the boy to a buyer he found in an online forum for people seeking children for adoption.
According to The Paper (via Shanghaist), the child’s mother told local authorities when she filed a police report that Chen asked her to let him bring the child back to his house so his parents can raise the young boy. Believing he was just trying to take the boy away from her, she refused. Chen then forcibly took the child and escaped quickly.
Chen then took his toddler son on a train from Wenzhou, Zhejiang Province, to Hunan Province to meet with his buyer named Zhu, a divorcee who suffers from infertility.
The seemingly desperate father even pretended to be a single mother who was having trouble bringing up her child. He initially asked for 100,000 yuan ($14,750) for the kid but after some bartering, they both agreed at 44,000 yuan. When Chen finally met Zhu, he simply introduced himself as the child’s uncle.
Following Chen’s arrest on Friday at an internet shop, Zhu was also apprehended and the boy was eventually returned to his mother on Monday.
Chen is currently in jail for child trafficking while Zhu was released after posting bail.