BBC: GBP 18,000 per Deal on Bulgaria's Baby Market

Politics | February 24, 2005, Thursday // 00:00| Views: | Comments: 0
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BBC: GBP 18,000 per Deal on Bulgaria's Baby Market The selling of babies is a growing business across Eastern Europe, BBC says. Photo by bbc.co.uk

As Bulgaria prepares to join the EU, there are certain issues it has to tackle, not least its murky underworld where even babies are for sale, says a report of BBC Radio 4's Crossing Continents.

It points out that Bulgaria's crossroads position in Europe makes it a perfect but vulnerable transit country - "commodities" such as cigarettes, meat, counterfeit currency, drugs and people are being smuggled or trafficked across its five borders.

BBC says the selling of babies is one the crimes which are so secretive and so laden with prejudice or misunderstanding that they are difficult to tackle.

It works like this: the heavily pregnant women are taken either by force or free will on tourist visas across the border to Greece, or sometimes to Italy.

The "pimps", or organisers, are usually local and known to the women, who give birth in hospital.

With the collusion of the doctor, pimp, lawyer and new family, the baby is claimed by the adoptive father and registered as his son.
The whole transaction costs about GBP 18,000 and can take less than a week.

The women get about GBP 2,000 for a girl and GBP 10,000 for a boy, according to BBC Radio 4.

BBC Radio 4's Crossing Continents was broadcast on Thursday, February 24, at 1100 GMT.

The programme will be repeated on Monday, February 28, at 2030 GMT.
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