The Indonesian Police on Friday said they had arrested four people for allegedly buying and selling babies via an Instagram page, BBC reported. The Instagram account, now taken down, portrayed itself as a “family welfare” service and asked those interested to contact them via a WhatsApp number.
East Java police spokesman Frans Barung Mangera said at least three babies were sold via the page that has been active for at least a year, The Guardian reported. The police said they arrested the accused after intercepting a transaction.
The account, which had around 700 followers, did not specifically mention the buying and selling of babies. The page also displayed screenshots between the operator and clients.
A spokesperson from Instagram said the image-sharing platform took down the account as soon as it was informed about it. “The safety of our community on Instagram is our absolute priority,” the company’s spokesperson said. “Our policies clearly prohibit people from engaging in criminal activity and coordinating harm on our platform, which includes the sale of humans.”
The arrested accused include a 29-year-old man from Sidoarjo who allegedly operated the account, a 22-year-old Surabaya-based woman who offered to sell her baby on the account, and a midwife and potential buyer from Bali, Mangera said.