Kidnapping and trafficking in children for purposes of adoption
An issue of increasing concern is the problem of illegal adoptions. Viet Nam is a popular source country for adoptions, with a number of EU Member states and other industrialised countries having bilateral agreements with Viet Nam under which such adoptions take place. In recent years, however, both the USA and Sweden, amongst others, have cancelled their adoption treaties with Viet Nam in view of growing levels of corruption and exploitation involved. Typically, babies come from poor rural families who are forced to part with the child out of economic hardship. Middlemen and government-licensed brokerage agencies pay these families a few hundred US dollars, but make a huge profit from the fees adopting parents have to pay. There is also increasing evidence of organised “baby-farming”. There have been documented cases in which small children and infants were kidnapped and sold for adoption to persons in Europe, North America or China.