After seven kids and still no sons, one married couple in rural Guangdong province determined that they would not give up on their quest for a beautiful baby boy, deciding to purchase one instead.
The couple scrounged together almost 100,000 yuan to buy a male infant on the black market from a group of human traffickers. However, they never made it home with their new bundle of joy, being caught by police in a bust.
Speaking with a reporter while waiting inside a courtroom, the husband surnamed Chen said that he and his wife had seven daughters aged from 2 to 18 years old — something that was considered a calamity in his own village where boys are prized over girls (重男轻女). Therefore, the couple decided to “adopt” a baby boy, claiming that they did not know they were dealing with human traffickers.
Chen said that the agents had asked for a 92,000 yuan “adoption fee.” While he admitted that that was a lot of money, he said that a boy would still be worth more, adding that where he’s from a family without a son isn’t really a family.
According to local authorities, the child that the couple had bought was originally from Yunnan province and had passed through the hands of a number of traffickers before finally being sold to Chen and his wife far away from his home.
The traditional preference for boys over girls has led to a potentially disastrous gender gap in China due to female infanticide and sex-selective abortions. Back in July, one woman from Anhui province died after having four abortions in a single year, trying to give birth to the son that her husband wanted.
The woman was able to find out the sex of the fetuses through ultrasound exams, which have been made illegal in China for exactly this reason. However, they remain common in practice at clinics and minivans across the country.
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