A mother is under criminal investigation in Russia for allegedly selling her newborn baby on the black market for £250, police say.
The woman, 30, named Chechena, has three school age children and reportedly needed the money “to buy sweets and clothes for the kids”.
The cleaner was detained after childcare officials, who knew she had been pregnant, became suspicious over the whereabouts of her baby.
She told officers she met the buyers – a childless couple – through acquaintances, according to police.
Chechena then allegedly used the woman buyer’s passport when she registered for a scan and later to enter the maternity hospital in April.
After the baby was born in Krasnoyarsk, the midwife is said to have handed the child to the woman’s husband, believing the man to be Chechena’s spouse.
“When I gave birth to a son, my maternal instincts appeared,” said Chechena.
“Before we were discharged from the hospital, I breastfed him myself.”
Despite having second thoughts, she said she agreed to go ahead and sell the baby.
“They immediately took the child away in a taxi,” she said.
“Later I called them several times, and they did not answer.
“Then they blacklisted me.”
Later she pocketed the agreed £250 (25,000 roubles) which was transferred to her card, she said.
“In the summer they transferred me the money to my bank card, like a lump sum,” she said.
“I used it to buy sweets and clothes for the children.
“If they had returned me the child, my fourth son, I would have taken him.”
The buyers have been found and are now in detention.
The baby boy is in the care of social services.
Chechena is under home arrest so she can care for her three older sons.
The woman and the couple face up to 15 years in jail if convicted under Russia’s child trafficking laws.
Police spokeswoman Daria Gribkova said: “She honestly admitted that she handed the baby over for money to a childless couple who she had met some time before.”
She also confessed to using the buyer’s passport in the maternity hospital, said Grobkova.