Police rescued more than 60 babies sold to traffickers by their birth parents in a wide ranging crackdown on the practice, the Beijing Times reported.
The operation, carried out in six provinces, busted six baby trafficking rings leading to the arrest of 171 suspects, with 64 babies rescued, the report said.
Mingming is one of the rescued babies. The boy, whose parents appear to come from Liangshan, Southwest China's Sichuan province, was sold to a couple in Xinxiang, Central China's Henan province shortly after birth, according to police.
In Xinxiang, traffickers took expectant mothers to where the buyers live and completed the deal there as newborns are more likely to be spotted by anti-trafficking police at railways and bus stations.
The price for Mingming was 70,000 yuan ($11,300). Baby boys cost more than girls (50,000 yuan).
To the astonishment of his new "mother", Mingming was diagnosed with cerebral palsy three months after being taken to his new home, a result of underground baby transactions during which health examinations are often overlooked.
Chen Shiqu, the officer in charge of the anti-trafficking operation, told the Beijing Times that many rescued babies have health problems due to poor hygiene conditions their mothers suffered during their pregnancy.
Police found that most babies suffer congenital defects because both the traffickers and their moms neglected their health.
In the crackdown in Xinxiang, expectant mothers were taken to pig farms to await delivery to save costs. Police found some pregnant women to be drug addicts or drug smugglers.
After the babies were born traffickers would buy a birth certificate for them at 4,000 yuan to help them get resident status, said the police.
In 2013 police rescued a stunning 52,000 abducted children in more than 8,600 child-trafficking cases, according to legaldaily.com.
Preference for boys and weak punishment for buyers are deemed two reasons the baby trafficking business is rampant.
The sex ratio of newborns is 115 boys for every 100 girls in China and that is believed to be the result of traditional values that prefer boys to carry on the family line.
According to Chinese law, buyers of babies shall be exempt from criminal liability if they have not ill-treated or impeded the rescue of trafficked children.