In Moldova, a disturbing case has emerged involving the attempted sale of a Ukrainian infant to a Romanian couple, highlighting the dark underbelly of illegal adoption rings.
Four women, including the head of a children's rights foundation, a hospital director, a notary, and a Ukrainian national, have been formally charged in connection to this nefarious scheme. The operation was meticulously planned, exploiting the turmoil in Ukraine to manipulate a vulnerable mother into giving up her newborn daughter under the guise of adoption.
According to News.ro, the mother, lured to Moldova's capital, Chisinau, in December 2022, was promised a safe haven to deliver her child amidst the conflict in her homeland. However, upon arrival, she faced intense psychological coercion aimed at persuading her to relinquish her baby to the Romanian duo, offering her money and goods in return.
The pressure included threats of stripping her parental rights in Ukraine, leveraging her dire financial situation and her lack of proficiency in Romanian to manipulate her decisions.
Legal documents were fraudulently altered to establish paternity in favor of the Romanian buyer, falsely registering him as the biological father on the birth certificate. This deceit was intended to facilitate the child's removal from Moldova. The plot was thwarted by law enforcement, who intervened just in time to prevent the baby's illegal transfer.
The case has now been forwarded to the court by the Prosecutor's Office for Combating Organized Crime and Special Cases (PCCOCS), with the accused facing severe legal repercussions, including potential prison sentences ranging from 15 to 20 years or even life imprisonment for child trafficking charges. The Romanian couple implicated in this case is set to be investigated in Romania, as Moldovan authorities have notified their counterparts.