Chinese couple deny cancer con after raising cash for sick child then ‘telling donors she died’
Police alerted after ailing daughter found to be still alive, but mother denies any wrongdoing, according to media reports
A Chinese couple who raised money to treat their daughter’s eye tumour have been accused of refusing to use the cash to pay for her medical care and pretending that she had died, according to a news website report.
The mother told donors that her three-year-old daughter had died after people who gave money to the family had earlier demanded that the child be treated before her condition worsened, Thecover.cn reported.
The parents, from a rural area in Taikang county, Henan province, aimed to raise 150,000 yuan (US$23,900) through online donations to treat their child, according to the report.
Donors discovered the parents had withdrawn over 23,000 yuan collected, but the girl’s health deteriorated and the parents appeared reluctant to seek any treatment for her, according to the report.
Three donors visited the family on April 5 and persuaded the parents to take the girl to hospitals in Beijing where doctors found the tumour had spread to the girl’s brain, according to the Yangtse Evening Post.
The mother refused to approve chemotherapy for her daughter or let hospitals admit her because she thought it would be too painful and expensive, one donor was quoted by the newspaper as saying.
The couple took the girl home and informed donors on April 9 the girl had died and asked them to pay 600 yuan to rent a car to carry her body, donors were quoted as saying.
They reported the matter to the police the next day.
But the girl is now being treated at the county’s public health centre after doctors found her condition had deteriorated too severely to be treated by surgery or chemotherapy, according to the Yangtse Evening Post.
The mother, who was only identified by her surname Yang, denied she had scammed donors, but refused to elaborate when questioned by the newspaper.
“The situation is too complicated,” Yang was quoted as saying. “I took huge blame for something I didn’t do.”
The mother said the family had only used a tiny portion of the donations they had received so far.