Kidnapped Chinese children reunited with parents through DNA database

Families separated for decades are brought back together after police drive to collect samples from victims

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 28 December, 2017, 3:40pm
UPDATED : Friday, 05 January, 2018, 2:29pm

A ceremony has been held in southwest China to reunite people who were kidnapped two or three decades ago with their parents, according to local media reports.

During the ceremony held in Nanchong in Sichuan province on Wednesday, organised by the provincial Department of Public Security, seven victims, most of whom were men, were reunited with their families, Newssc.org reported.

One of the seven victims is a 24-year-man surnamed Zhang, who was kidnapped by a woman while walking alone in a street in Yibin in 1998.

The man said he remembered the woman gave him something to eat that made him fall asleep immediately.

Chinese prison reunites inmate with family 30 years after kidnapping by child traffickers

The woman took the boy on trip on a long-distance bus and drugged him again when he woke up.

Eventually they arrived in Fujian province in the southeast, about 2,000km from his hometown, where he was sold to a family in a village near the city of Yongan.

His parents had given blood samples to a DNA database to find kidnapped children last year, while Zhang gave a sample in September, which enabled police to reunite them.

Another victim was a 36-year-old man who was kidnapped from his hometown in Nanchong in 1986. His parents never gave up hope that their son would return home, and had not moved or changed the outside appearance of their house during the past three decades, the report said.

Police said they had been focusing on finding kidnapped or lost children this year.

Chinese kidnappers who held boy for nine months are jailed

The authority had finished investigating six major cases and have found 52 victims using DNA evidence, the report said.

The report did not say whether the police had found any of the kidnappers or the families that raised the victims.

Child kidnapping has been a problem in recent decades in China with at least 10,000 victims a year, according to an official estimate from 2013. However, the US State Department and Chinese state media estimate that the true figure could be anything between 20,000 and 100,000 a year.

Over the past decade, the Ministry of Public Security has been building up a national DNA database, encouraging those parents whose children were kidnapped and people who want to find their biological families to give blood samples.