A family business built on abandoned babies
Barbara Demick; 5/2/10
The telephones kept ringing with more orders and, although Duan Yuelin kept raising his prices, the demand was inexhaustible. Customers were so eager to buy more that they would ply him with expensive gifts and dinners in fancy restaurants. His family-run business was racking up sales of as much as $US3000 a month, unimaginable riches for uneducated rice farmers from the southern Chinese province of Hunan. What merchandise was he selling? Babies. And the customers were government-run orphanages that paid up to $US600 each for newborn girls for adoption in the United States and other Western countries. ”They couldn’t get enough babies. The demand kept going up and up, and so did the prices,” said Duan, who was released from prison last month after serving about four years of a six-year sentence for child trafficking.