A 20-year-old South African mother tried to sell her 19-month-old baby boy on the internet for $340. The mother is cannot be named to protect the identity of the baby boy. She put her child for sale for 5,000 rand in an advertisement on the Gumtree website last year.
The mom said she tried to sell her child because her boyfriend stopped paying the childcare after having paternity test that showed he was not the father of the baby boy.
A member of the public informed the police who arrested her in an undercover operation last October.
A justice official said she was given a five-year suspended sentence but she will not spend time in jail. She will live under house arrest for three years.
The National Prosecuting Authority spokeswoman Natasha Ramkisson-Kara told the AFP,
“She was given a wholly-suspended sentence of five years and she will undergo correctional supervision, which means basically house arrest for a period of three years”
Ramkisson-Kara also said,
“The magistrate found that the woman did not have the intention per se to traffic the child.”
Human trafficking carries a maximum life jail term or a fine of 100 million rand ($6.7 million).
However, the court sitting in the eastern city of Pietermaritzburg on Wednesday handed down a much lighter sentence after considering the woman’s circumstances.