A gang in China is being accused of buying mentally disabled women from their families and selling them as wives across China.
The women were kept in a pigsty where customers could go in and pick out a female to purchase, according to People’s Daily Online.
The gang targeted women between the ages of 20 and 30 who were mentally challenged or psychologically impaired. The women were often from poor rural villages and towns.
A local “matchmaker” was hired to pay families between 3,000 yuan ($472) to 5,000 yuan ($787) for each woman. The families were told husbands would be found for their daughters.
After a sale, the women would be transported to the Shandong province in eastern China where they were kept on a pig farm and put on display for potential customers by a man named Sun.
The women would be sold for between 5,000 yuan ($787) and 10,000 yuan ($575).
Clients also had the option to “order” a girl based on their personal tastes. Buyers were usually poor men who had trouble finding companions and resorted to purchasing a mate to carry on the family name.
Police investigation began on Feb. 8 when a women behaving erratically on a train with two men aroused the suspicions of local police. They were arrested after police discovered that they had purchased the women in Fangchenggang, a city on the southern coast of China.
The arrest prompted further investigation and led to the arrest of all the traffickers involved.
The women were returned to their homes by police. However, one family rejected their daughter because they were “too poor to care for her,” according to an officer’s account.