Guo Gangtang and his wife, Zhang Wenge, were reunited on Sunday with their son who was abducted 24 years ago.Credit...China Daily, via Reuters

After 24-years, Guo Gangtang and his wife Zhang Wenge were reunited with their son Guo Xinzhen who was abducted at the age of 2 outside of his parent’s front gate in China.  Last Sunday, now 26-year-old Xinzhen embraced his parents after local police organized their reunion.  

According to reports, once Gangtang discovered that his son was kidnapped in 1997; he placed all of his efforts on one manhunt across China which left him broke.  He rented 10 motorcycles and carried a flag that had a picture of his son on it.   

Xinzhen was kidnapped by a woman and her boyfriend who took him to Hebei province, which surrounds Beijing, the Chinese capital.   Xinzhen was sold to a couple.   The woman and her boyfriend, who solid Xinzhen, were identified by surnames Tang and Hu confessed to traffic operations that involved adducting three boys.  

If Tang and Hu stand trial, they face penalties, even death.  Tang and Hu confessed to kidnapping Xinzhen during an interrogation; they told police Tang met up with Hu and took a bus to Henan where they sold Xinzhen.  

Police were able to track down Xinzhen by using the newest DNA analysis and facial feature comparison technology including the Ministry of Public Security. 

After some effort, law enforcement found a potential match for Xinzhen in Henan.  Xinzhen took a DNA sample, and it confirmed that he was the missing child.  When Xinzhen was kidnapped, his father’s efforts were the inspiration for the 2015 movie “Lost and Love,” starring Hong Kong actor Andy Lau. 

In a 2015 television interview, Xinzhen’s mother said, “What use is it for me to live? It was me who lost the child.”  

In China, child abductions and trafficking are ongoing issues.  Historically, most urban couples in China were only allowed to conceive one child due to the overpopulation in the country; it is believed this is one of the main reasons child kidnapping occurs.  

If an individual is successful in abducting a child, the children are sold depending on their gender.  It is believed that boys are sold to couples who want a son who can take care of them as they age, while girls go to buyers who want servants or brides for their only son.

Guo started a website in 2012 and a charity in 2014 to help parents of abducted children.

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