A Chinese woman has been sentenced to death for abducting and trafficking 223 infants over a period of less than a year, a court said Saturday.
Jiang Kaizhi, 51, was convicted and sentenced Friday by Qujing Intermediate People's Court in southwest China's Yunnan province, according to a statement posted on its website.
The court said Jiang was the leader of a trafficking ring that abducted and bought infants from the province and transported them to be sold in central China's Henan province from late 2009 to August 2010. The group made 30,000 yuan ($4,800) for each baby boy and 20,000 yuan ($3,200) for each baby girl, the court said.
The court said 35 others involved in the trafficking ring were sentenced Friday to prison for terms ranging from three years to life.
Trafficking in children is a big problem in China, where a traditional preference for male heirs and a strict one-child policy has driven a thriving market in baby boys.
Chief Judge Li Xuesong said in the statement that Chinese courts usually mete out harsh punishments against traffickers but have failed to adequately penalize baby buyers, causing the black market for infants to continue to thrive.