Chen Shiqu, director of the ministry's office of anti-human trafficking, said most of the victims are deceived before being kidnapped and smuggled into China. She did not reveal specific numbers of such victims in this country, but mentioned a case in the northern Chinese province of Hebei, in which police have rescued 206 foreign women trafficked into the country since April of 2009. Most of the victims were from Vietnam, Myanmar, Laos, Thailand and Cambodia.
"The lack of natural barriers and poverty in some regions in these countries contributes to the rising trafficking of foreign women," Chen was quoted as saying by China Daily.
The victims, mainly in their 20s and 30s, are often sold in China's rural areas by criminal gangs to local residents or forced to work in brothels in China's coastal and border areas including the provinces of Yunnan, Guangdong and Guangxi Zhuang autonomous region.
The criminals use promises of high-paid jobs to lure these young women, or tell them they will be able to marry rich men living in China's big cities. Once the victims agree, the traffickers would arrange them to be smuggled into China before selling them to traffickers in China.
"The price of each woman ranges from 20,000 to 50,000 yuan (US$3,100-$7,800), which depends on their figure, appearance and nationality," Jin Yulu, a senior border police officer in Yunnan province told the newspaper.
A 22-year-old woman from Myanmar was sold for 30,000 yuan (US$4,700) to a local young man in southern province of Jiangsu. She was sexually abused by her husband and rescued by the police about half a year later. The police have sent her back to Myanmar in July but the trafficker remains at large.
To cope with the rising incidence of trafficking, Chinese police have begun a crackdown in border areas between July and September of this year, rescuing more than 100 victims.
China has signed the Mekong river sub-regional cooperation anti-trafficking memo with Thailand, Myanmar, Laos, and Cambodia to curb international trafficking.