After 24 years, Chinese mother reunites with abducted son with the help of facial recognition and DNA matching

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A mother from China's Henan province has been reunited with her son she last saw 24 years ago with the help of facial recognition and DNA matching. — from2015/Istock.com pic via AFP
A mother from China's Henan province has been reunited with her son she last saw 24 years ago with the help of facial recognition and DNA matching. — from2015/Istock.com pic via AFP

KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 24 — A mother from China’s Henan province was reunited with her son she last saw 24 years ago with the help of facial recognition and DNA matching.

The mother Li Fang, 52, was reunited with the man Zhang Yangyang, 28, on Sunday, Global Times reported.

Zhang was abducted by a human trafficker, who used instant noodles and ham sausage to lure the then four-year-old boy in front of the barber shop that Li operated in Luohe, Henan on June 6, 1998.

According to the portal, Li had stepped away from her shop for 10 minutes to buy noodles when the suspect abducted Zhang.

A nearby shop owner witnessed the entire incident but did not think much of it as the owner thought the suspect was Li’s relative.

The abduction of Zhang led to Li’s marriage breaking down and she never remarried, the portal added, noting that she spared no effort to look for her abducted son.

Li’s case got a breakthrough when the father of another abducted child passed Zhang’s photo to anti-abduction police and in less than half a month, police contacted Li and told her that they had found Zhang through facial recognition technologies.

A DNA comparison also confirmed Zhang’s identity.

According to media reports, Zhang was found at Puning in South China’s Guangdong province and had been working as a migrant worker in Hainan province.

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