Chinese authorities announced Friday the rescue over 300 babies in a sting that thwarted four Internet-based baby trafficking rings.
The fake adoption websites were selling babies in a country where a one-child rule has made baby trafficking a thriving enterprise, according to the Public Security Ministry. Authorities said 382 babies were rescued and 1,094 people were arrested in connection to their abduction and sale, the Associated Press reports. The suspects could potentially face the death penalty, the harshest punishment for baby trafficking, if found guilty.
The bust was a part of a six-month operation that started when police in Beijing and Jiangsu began following the bogus private adoption websites, CNN reports. Some of the buyers were connected through a Chinese instant messaging site and online forums.