Parents reunited with son abducted in 1988 and sold to adoptive family for $840

Police track down Mao Yin using facial recognition technology

Peter Stubley
Tuesday 19 May 2020 16:56 BST
Chinese man reuinited with parents 32 years after being abducted

A Chinese man who was abducted as a toddler 32 years ago and sold to another family has been reunited with his parents.

Mao Yin was two years old when he was kidnapped while walking home from nursery in the city of Xi’an, the capital of Shaanxi province, in 1988.

Now 34-years-old, he was was reunited with his parents at the municipal police station in Xi’an on Monday afternoon.

His mother Li Jinzhi distributed more than 100,000 flyers during the three-decade search for her son and campaigned tirelessly to raise awareness about thousands of missing children across China.

She also helped 29 families find their missing sons and daughters by working as a volunteer for the Baobeihuijia (“Baby Come Home”) website, according to state media.

Then in April this year police received a tip off that someone from Sichuan Province in southwest China had paid 6,000 yuan (£690) to adopt a child from Xi’an many years ago.

Facial recognition technology was used to help narrow down the search and in early May officers tracked down a man resembling Ms Li’s missing son in the city of Mianyang.

He had been renamed Gu Ningning by his adoptive parents and was running a home decoration business.

After a DNA test confirmed a match, Ms Li was told the good news on Mother’s Day, 10 May.

“I can’t believe that after helping 29 missing children find their families, I am able to find my own son,” said Ms Li. ”I would like to thank the tens of thousands of people who helped us.”

Holding her son’s hands, she added: “I don’t want to be separated from him any more”, according to South China Morning Post.

Police are still investigating Mao’s case and his adoptive parents have not been publicly identified.

According to China’s Ministry of Public Security, more than 6,300 children who were abducted have been reunited with their families via DNA tests since 2009.

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