A Happy Ending to a Horrific Story
Human trafficking is a horrifying type of modern slavery that plagues huge portions of the world, including the United States. Disturbingly, one of the reasons that it’s so pervasive and damaging is because it often happens under people’s noses without anyone ever being aware. Human traffickers often prey on people who are weak, young, defenseless, and who have nowhere else to turn, and so those who are already at a disadvantage in society are often those who fall victim to the chilling trade. Knowing and understanding why this life-destroying and generally fatal trade is so damaging makes this story all the more chilling.
When this man didn’t see eye-to-eye with the mother of his child, he didn’t decide to leave, or to put the child up for adoption. Instead, he sold his own son to human traffickers. The fact that the boy was ever seen or heard from again is a true miracle.
Zhao Wei broke up with his partner, Ms Ling, in December 2016. It came after Ms Ling discovered that Zhao Wei had an affair with another woman. It wasn’t until later that she went to visit their child together that it became clear something was wrong. Instead of simply putting his own mistake behind him, Zhao Wei decided to sell their son to human traffickers.
She contacted police after she became concerned about what Zhao Wei did. After three months of investigating, the police managed to discover that their son was indeed sold by Zhao Wei for 45,000 yuan, or roughly $6,736, to a family in another province. Who was there to help him make the transaction? None other than the Zhao Wei’s father — the child’s grandfather. Yes, these two men worked together to sell their flesh and blood out of spite for the child’s mother.
Human traffickers often sell children multiple times and this case is a good example of that. That family resold the child to a woman living in northern China’s Inner Mongolia for roughly $8,833 U.S. dollars. Then, he was sent to southern China after several transactions that totaled around $33,834.
All in all, police traveled 4,350 miles before they tracked down the child, and the fact that he was recovered at all is nothing short of miraculous. Luckily, in this case, justice was served. The child was returned to his grandparents, and 14 people, including the child’s father, were all arrested in relation to the human trafficking incident.
A Horrific Trade
This is just one of several examples of the way that children end up in the horrible web of human trafficking. Just a few years earlier, a mother was horrified to find that her child was sold into human trafficking by none other than her trusted doctor. In another miracle, she was reunited with her child after obstetrician Zhang Lin was arrested for allegedly trying to sell the child to human traffickers. He attempted to cover his tracks by telling the mother that the child was terminally ill as a way to explain its disappearance. In this case, the boy was sold for a mere $4,600.
Although in these cases, the mothers have been reunited with their children, that’s not the norm in cases of human trafficking — a horror that is often left unacknowledged.