Drug user jailed for abandoning newborn

Despite having enough money to care for his daughter, the man refused to take her from hospital. The Shanghai Children's Home is caring for her while it looks for new parents.

A drug user who abandoned his newborn daughter in a hospital and refused to take her home despite police warnings was jailed for a year and stripped of guardianship yesterday by the Hongkou District People’s Court.

The girlfriend of the man surnamed Wang, 38, gave birth to a healthy girl, nicknamed Xiaohui, on March 4, 2016, in Hongkou’s Jiangwan Hospital.

She left the hospital with the baby but was readmitted on March 9 after sustaining severe head injuries in a fall.

Wang’s girlfriend was diagnosed with a severe cerebral hemorrhage and she was transferred to the Shanghai General Hospital.

Wang accompanied her but left the baby at Jiangwan Hospital.

He then disappeared, leaving his dying girlfriend in intensive care and abandoning his baby. The woman died on April 28, 2016, the court said.

Jiangwan Hospital and Hongkou police called Wang to take his daughter home, but he refused and disappeared.

He did not send anyone to see the girl and did not pay hospital costs. Wang was nabbed on December 15, 2017, at the Shanghai South Railway Station.

The girl lived at the hospital for 10 months before being transferred on January 22 to the city’s temporary care center for children which cares for babies thought to be abandoned.

Wang told police he could not afford to raise his daughter, but bank records showed more than 59,000 yuan (US$9,268) was deposited in his account between May and December, 2017.

Police records also showed he was picked up in Yangpu District on March 17, 2016, for using drugs. He was given 14 days’ detention.

The court ruled Wang had the financial means to raise his daughter and it was his duty, but that he abandoned her despite police warnings.

Meanwhile, the temporary care center filed a lawsuit in the same court to strip him of guardianship and assign it to the Shanghai Children’s Home, as the girl’s grandparents on both sides were unable to raise her.

The home will have guardianship while it finds someone to adopt her.

It is the second recent lawsuit of its kind — stripping natural parents of guardianship.

In July 2017, an unmarried woman serving a one-year jail term for abandoning her newborn daughter was stripped of her guardianship over the child by the Jing’an District People’s Court.

The baby’s father had disappeared and other relatives were reluctant or considered unsuitable to raise her. That court also placed her under the care of the Shanghai Children’s home until they could find someone to adopt her.

The mother, surnamed Gao, 24, delivered the baby, nicknamed Duoduo, on February 19, 2014, in Jiading District’s Anting Hospital.

The girl was born sick and was later transferred to the Shanghai Children’s Hospital.

Special Reports