Story By: John Feng, Sub Editor: Joseph Golder, Agency: Asia Wire Report
Video Credit: AsiaWire
This is the moment cops rescue a 13-year-old girl with special needs and arrest her middle-aged kidnapper who reportedly spent half a year grooming her to be a child bride after she met him by chance online.
The suspect surnamed Tian, 49, claimed he took the girl, 13, as a bride for his son, but investigators say he sent pictures of his genitals to her and also attempted to rape her.
Police in the city of Harbin, capital of north-eastern China’s Heilongjiang Province, travelled over 2,000 miles to intercept the pair after Tian took the girl from city to city by train in an apparent bid to confuse pursuing officers.
Pictures Credit: AsiaWire
Five days after the girl was reported missing by her grandfather, they were found waiting to board another train at Huizhou Railway Station in China’s southern province of Guangdong on 6th July – just minutes before they were to disappear again.
According to Harbin police, who interrogated the suspect at a police station in Huizhou, the suspect admitted to kidnapping the child, but said he had planned to make her a bride for his elder son, 24.
He told police he was bringing the girl back to his hometown in Central China’s Hunan Province, where his younger son, nine, also lives.
However, investigators have cast doubt on the suspect’s claim, saying they had found chat logs showing Tian having sent pictures of his genitals to the teenager.
According to the girl, who attends a special needs school, Tian also “tried to do things” to her in a hotel, but he stopped after she slapped him.
The authorities said a Huizhou hospital confirmed that a thorough check-up found no signs of sexual assault or rape, and that the 13-year-old was still a virgin.
The police noted that the teenager is said to have accidentally contacted Tian six months ago when she mis-dialled his number.
The pair added each other on instant-messaging application WeChat – China’s version of WhatsApp – and the suspect spent half a year convincing her to live with him.
Tian allegedly promised to find the girl a job so she could earn money for her grandparents.
The child’s grandad, Mr Fan, said: “She was coaxed away. We don’t know whether he was going to sell her or what.
“He told her to bring her ID card and that he’d pick her up in Harbin.”
Investigations say the grandparents, who care for the girl while her parents work elsewhere, have a lack of understanding about mobile phone and internet technologies, contributing to the girl’s kidnapping.
Investigations are ongoing.
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