December 28, 2023
BEIJING – A human trafficker involved in a high-profile child abduction case has been sentenced to death with a two-year reprieve and an accomplice has been sentenced to life imprisonment.
The Liaocheng Intermediate People’s Court in Shandong province announced the child trafficking verdicts on Wednesday.
Hu Fuji was sentenced to death for the crime of child trafficking, with a two-year reprieve, lifetime deprivation of political rights, and confiscation of all personal property.
The other defendant, Tang Lixia, was sentenced to life imprisonment for the crime of child trafficking, with lifetime deprivation of political rights and confiscation of all personal property.
The court also ordered both defendants to jointly compensate the civil plaintiffs for material losses amounting to over 500,000 yuan ($70,000).
The case attracted attention because the children they trafficked included the son of Guo Gangtang, whose search for his missing son was turned into a movie, Lost and Love, in 2015, with the lead role played by Hong Kong actor Andy Lau.
On Sept 21, 1997, Guo’s two-and-a-half-year-old son was abducted near his home. He was finally found in 2021. The two human traffickers were arrested later.
Guo traveled over 500,000 kilometers in his search for his son, visiting dozens of provinces and using up 10 motorcycles.
After a hearing that began on July 7 this year, the court found that between 1997 and 1998, the defendants had trafficked four children, including Guo’s son. In 2001, Hu, along with others, trafficked another child.