Mumbai baby selling racket: Woman confesses to selling 6 newborns in 6 months
Police sources said this number could just be a tip of the icebergmumbai Updated: Sep 26, 2017 09:28 IST
A 29-year-old woman, who was arrested for allegedly running a baby selling racket on Friday, confessed to have sold at least six newborns in different parts of the country in the past six months, said the Wadala TT police.
Police sources said this number could just be a tip of the iceberg as they are still interrogating Julia Fernandes, the accused, who is not cooperating with the investigation. Also, police teams have been sent to various states to track the six children.
On Monday, the police booked an autorickshaw driver and his wife who sold their seven-day-old baby to Fernandes for Rs20,000 under sections of the Juvenile Justice Act. She was going to sell the baby for Rs1.5 lakh to a childless couple when she was arrested. “We will now have to prove that the boy was their child through DNA test and that they had sold their newborn for money,” said an officer from Wadala TT police station.
“Fernandes also said that since the demand for boys was higher, she targeted poor parents in nursing homes and government hospitals who had just had a boy and convince them to sell their newborn for Rs20,000 to Rs30,000,” added the officer.
The police said they arrested Fernandes after they got a tip off that she had dropped off a newborn at a woman’s home in Sangam Nagar. The police then reached the spot and took the kid in their custody.
On being interrogated, the woman said Fernandes, who is her neighbour, had left the child in her care for two days. She added that Fernandes had told her that she worked for a nursing home and sometimes got newborns out of the hospital for getting them vaccinated.
The police also suspect that Fernandes could be part of an inter-state racket and sold children through her gang members.“We are now trying to find out if the woman had any gang members. We are also looking for her clients, who may include NRIs,” added the officer.
Fernandes, who speaks fluent English and has done a course in nursing from Jawahar University after studying business management, has been changing her statement and misleading the police. The police said this is making it difficult for them to track the babies.