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Man receives suspended prison sentence for abandoning newborn baby

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The baby box in Seoul / Yonhap

The baby box in Seoul / Yonhap

By Kim Se-jeong

A district court in Gwangju has handed down a suspended prison sentence to a man who abandoned his newborn daughter in a baby box in 2016.

According to local news reports, a judge at the Gwangju District Court sentenced the defendant, a civil servant, to six months in prison, suspended for two years, for violating the Child Welfare Act. The defendant was also ordered to attend 40 hours of child abuse prevention classes.

The defendant stood trial on the charge of abandoning the daughter born to a woman with whom he had a relationship in 2016. Both married to other people, the two unwilling parents agreed to travel to Seoul to leave the newborn baby girl in the baby box when she was less than a month old.

The Seoul baby box, which first opened in 2009, is operated by a church group. Approximately 2,100 babies had been abandoned there as of now. Upon arrival, babies are put up for adoption or placed in an orphanage.

The judge was quoted as saying, "The nature of his crime is serious. However, I took into account that he had not committed any similar crime before and that he is showing remorse."

Kim Se-jeong


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