His search gained national attention when it inspired a 2015 movie, “Lost and Love,” starring Hong Kong actor Andy Lau.
Gangtang couldn’t find his son — but managed to help track down more than 100 other abducted children and reunite them with their families, according to Xinhua.
This year, authorities hit upon a new lead. Using the latest technology including DNA analysis and facial feature comparison, the Ministry of Public Security found a potential match in Henan — and when officers tracked the man down, DNA testing confirmed that it was the missing Guo Xinzhen.
Police detained a suspected child trafficker identified only as Hu, and his ex-girlfriend identified as Tang, according to the police’s social media post. The two confessed after interrogation, saying Tang had abducted Guo Xinzhen in 1997. She then met up with Hu, and the then-couple took a bus back to Henan, where they sold the child.
It is unclear who Guo Xinzhen was sold to, and no further details of his upbringing were provided by police.
Child abduction and trafficking has long been a rampant problem
in China, with many parents never finding their missing children. Activists and experts say the problem was exacerbated by China’s one-child policy, which has been relaxed in recent years. In May, the government announced it would begin allowing couples to have up to three children.
But for decades, because of the strict policy and China’s patriarchal society, it was common for couples to desire a boy — driving a black market
for trafficked infant boys, while girls are often sold to foreign adoptive parents, falsely labeled as orphans.
It’s not clear how many children go missing in China every year, though estimates go up to tens of thousands. China is ranked Tier 3 by the US State Department’s anti-trafficking agency
— the lowest level, meaning the government “does not fully meet the minimum standards for the elimination of trafficking.”…