Colombian mother arrested for selling her twelve daughters' virginities for £125 each

Woman was detained after her pregnant daughter contacted police after being forced to abort child, it is claimed

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The Independent US

A Colombian woman has been arrested after selling her 12 young daughters' virginities for £125 each, police have said.

Margarita de Jesus Zapata Moreno, 45, was detained in the Colombian capital Bogota earlier this week, after one of her daughters, who is now 16 and pregnant, got in touch with police, the Daily Mail reports.

It is claimed that the girl was angry after her mother forced her to abort the child.

Tito Cornelio Daza, 51, who is reported to be the baby's father, is also being held.

Zapata, who has 14 children in total, sold the virginity of each child once they hit the age of 12, according to the Colombian broadcaster Univision.

The mother, who faces 10 years in prison if convicted, is alleged to have then forced her daughters to work as prostitutes in order to pay the family's bills.

“It hurts that a mother would do this,' said Carlos Melendez, the local police chief investigating the case, speaking to reporters.

“The mother contacted highly solvent but depraved men so they could have sex with the minors when they turned 12,” he added.

Zapata, who denies the allegations, is being held at El Buen Pastor Womens' prison, while Daza is in custody at Modelo Prison.

Both have been accused of carnal abuse of a minor under 14-years-old, in addition to the enforcement of prostitution.

Two of her children who have not been subjected to forced prostitution, an 11-year-old boy and a girl aged 9, are understood to be in the care of social services.

The girl who reported her mother is now in receipt of psychological help from Colombia's Family Welfare Institute.