18-year-old Sun Zhou was abducted from the city of Shenzhen in 2007 at the age of 4, but his parents never gave up hope of seeing him again.
Chinese state media reported that her father Sun Haiyang and her mother Peng Sieng sold properties to fund her research and offered a reward of up to $31,000 for information on her whereabouts.
Over the years, Sun Haiyang said he traveled to almost every region of China to search for his son, according to a website run by the Ministry of Public Security.
Hong Kong director Peter Chan’s 2014 film “Dearest,” based on Sun’s story, grossed more than $50 million at the box office, according to IMDb, and highlighted the widespread problem of kidnapping and child trafficking in China. What did
Experts say the problem is exacerbated by China’s one-child policy, which has been relaxed in recent years. For decades, people who had a second child were fined heavily or forced to have an abortion.
Authorities tracked down Sun in the eastern province of Shandong after using facial recognition technology to identify Wu Mulong, the man police accused of kidnapping her, the ministry’s website said.
DNA analysis confirmed Suraj’s identity, state media reported.
Police said that Wu has been arrested in connection with the kidnapping of two children, including Sun. State media reported that Sun’s adoptive father and mother have been released pending charges.
In a twist in the story, Sun told state media that she would live with her adoptive parents because she had been raised for more than 10 years and was previously unaware of her parentage.
According to Chinese authorities, more than 8,000 abducted children have been reunited with their parents in 2021, with many cases solved through China’s massive police DNA database and technology such as facial recognition.
Additional reporting by CNN’s Jesse Yong.