'We thought he was dead,' says grandad of baby found buried alive in China

PHOTO: Weibo

The grandfather of a baby boy who was found buried alive on a remote hillside in August has been detained by police in east China.

The case caught the attention of the nation after making the television news last weekend.

Police in Xintai, Shandong province, said in a statement on social media on Friday that the baby’s paternal grandfather, surnamed Liu, had been put under criminal detention after turning himself in.

Liu said that his wife, who was not named, buried the infant – who was a twin – as they believed he had died, the WeChat statement said.

The boy was just eight days old when he was found on August 21 inside a cardboard box that had been buried on a remote hillside about 23km (14 miles) from his home, local media reported.

The baby was found by two people who were picking mushrooms when they heard him crying. With the help of a group of other locals they lifted him to safety and contacted the emergency services.

The boy, who has yet to be named, was taken to hospital in the provincial capital Jinan. A doctor named Zhou Shanhong from the village close to where he was found covered the cost of his treatment and said she would adopt him if he was not wanted by his parents, Jinan Times reported on Friday.

The child was released from hospital on Thursday and is currently in Zhou’s care, the report said.

The baby’s mother took him and his twin brother home just two days after they were born. Photo: WeiboThe baby’s mother took him and his twin brother home just two days after they were born. Photo: Weibo

The baby’s mother took him and his twin brother home just two days after they were born. Photo: Weibo

The grandfather of a baby boy who was found 

buried alive

 on a remote hillside in August has been detained by police in east China.

The case caught the attention of the nation after making the television news last weekend.

Police in Xintai, Shandong province, said in a statement on social media on Friday that the baby’s paternal grandfather, surnamed Liu, had been put under criminal detention after turning himself in.

Liu said that his wife, who was not named, buried the infant – who was a twin – as they believed he had died, the WeChat statement said.

The baby was just eight days old when he was found on August 21. Photo: Weibo

The baby was just eight days old when he was found on August 21. Photo: Weibo

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The boy was just eight days old when he was found on August 21 inside a cardboard box that had been buried on a remote hillside about 23km (14 miles) from his home, local media reported.

The baby was found by two people who were picking mushrooms when they heard him crying. With the help of a group of other locals they lifted him to safety and contacted the emergency services.

The boy, who has yet to be named, was taken to hospital in the provincial capital Jinan. A doctor named Zhou Shanhong from the village close to where he was found covered the cost of his treatment and said she would adopt him if he was not wanted by his parents, Jinan Times reported on Friday.

The child was released from hospital on Thursday and is currently in Zhou’s care, the report said.

PHOTO: Weibo

Liu gave himself in to police in Xintai on Sunday after seeing the reports of the child’s rescue on television, news website Iqilu.com reported.

He said his daughter-in-law gave birth to twin boys on August 13, one of whom had a serious lung infection.

“My grandson lived on a life support machine [at hospital]. He was very ill and could not breathe without the machine. I thought he died. He did not breathe for a long time,” the website quoted Liu’s wife as saying.

The police statement made no mention of any punishments being handed out to the baby’s parents or grandmother.

A hospital doctor, Wang Lei, said that as well as a lung infection the baby had a minor spine deformity for which he was being treated. However, just two days after the babies were born their parents decided to take them home and not continue with the treatment.

“We needed to confirm the extent of the problem, but from my experience it did not seem to be life threatening,” Wang said.

“We have cured babies with much more serious problems.”

This article was first published in South China Morning Post.