A person emailed this article to me: a six-year-old girl living in Colombo, Sri Lanka is believed to have been one of those lost in the aftermath of the 2004 tsunami. I’m not sure why the authorities are so sure about this, but they have stated that the people she was living with are not her real parents and she may have come from Galle, which was hit hard by the tsunami. She would have been an infant at the time. Wikipedia says Galle is 119 kilometers, or about 75 miles, from Colombo.
The adoptive parents claim they bought the girl from a person on the street for eighteen bucks. This article says the cops think a staff member at a hospital in Galle sold the baby and the price was $23.
The authorities have said the girl was attending school and she wasn’t abused. She has been taken into foster care while they try to find her real parents. I wonder, if her real parents turn out to be dead, will the adoptive ones be allowed to keep her. It sounds like that would be the best thing for the child. This is the only family she knows. On the other hand, buying a stolen baby is wrong and illegal and that kind of behavior should not be rewarded by letting the buyers keep the kid.
When the tsunami happened I remembered thinking that I wouldn’t be surprised if children were kidnapped and sold in the chaos that resulted from the disaster. A kidnapper would be highly likely to get away with it — assuming the crime was discovered at all and people didn’t just think the child died in the tsunami, it would be very difficult to trace the person who took it.