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Chinese doctor admits to stealing seven babies in new child trafficking case

Six of the stolen babies were rescued, but one girl sold for £100 died

A Chinese doctor has admitted to stealing seven babies and selling them for profit, state media and court said.

Zhang Shuxia, an obstetrician based at the Fuping County Maternal and Child Hospital, pleaded guilty to charges of child trafficking in a Shaanxi province court.

She was accused of stealing seven babies after lying to parents about the health of their babies and persuading them to give them up.

Zhang sold the infants to child traffickers between November 2011 and July 2013, according to an indictment posted by the Weinan Intermediate People's Court online

Six of the stolen babies were rescued, but one girl, who was sold for 1,000 yuan, approximately £100, died.

The case was brought to light after a mother suspected her baby had been stolen and reported her to the police in July.

Zhang had told her the infant suffered from hepatitis B and would not survive. She was then caught carrying a baby on CCTV footage.

The baby was sold for 21,600 yuan, approximately £2158, and then resold for 59,800 yuan, £5975, according to Chinese media reports.

Police identified Zhang as one of leaders of a child trafficking ring operating in at least four provinces.

Chinese authorities uncovered 1,868 child trafficking cases last year, according to China Daily.