Two suspects, Phạm Thị Huế (above) and Ninh Thị Hải Yến, were arrested by Hạ Long police for running an illegal paid surrogacy ring. — VNA/VNS Photo
QUẢNG NINH — The Hạ Long City police on Thursday arrested two women and filed charges for allegedly running an illegal commercial surrogacy business that involved taking Vietnamese women to China.
Phạm Thị Huế, 35, from the northern province of Bắc Giang, and Ninh Thị Hải Yến, 31, of Hà Nội were taken in after the police received tip-offs from neighbours about suspicious activities at a house at No 79, 1A Zone, Hồng Hải Ward, Hạ Long.
On March 13 the police raided the house and found Huế, Trần Văn Khải, 21, of Thái Bình Province and Phạm Thị Hồng T., 30, of Sa Đéc Town in the southern province of Đồng Tháp living there.
They took Huế and Khải to the police station for questioning while T. was not at home.
Huế told them that in 2017, while working in China, she had met a man named Yang, who claimed to be the director of a local hospital.
He had agreed to pay her VNĐ50-60 million (US$2,150-2,580) for each Vietnamese woman she brought to act as a surrogate mother, with an additional 1000 yuan ($140) for taking care of each, she said.
In Việt Nam, through social media, she contacted four women who agreed to accompany her, including Yến.
Three were deemed to be healthy and the transplantation of embryos were said to be successful, while Yến failed the health examination but introduced five other willing women to Huế.
Between March and October last year Huế took 15 potential surrogate women to a hospital in Guangzhou.
Yang hired an interpreter to help her take care of the pregnant, including Hải Yến and a certain unidentified woman by the name of Phan Anh.
Last November Yang told Huế to return to Việt Nam and rent a house to accommodate some of the pregnant women brought back from China.
Huế was paid a total of VNĐ260 million for introducing and taking care of 15 surrogate mothers.
She in turn paid Yến VNĐ30 million for her intermediary role.
Huế said nine pregnant Vietnamese women still remained in China.
The surrogate woman is paid VNĐ300-340 million after the baby is delivered.
The police said they searched the suspects’ houses as well as the rented house and found the health records of the surrogate mothers and other books listing the expenses.
They have transferred the case to the Quảng Ninh Province police to expand the investigation. — VNS