London

London pair guilty of baby slave sale plot

Two baby traffickers from London have been found guilty of trying to sell an 11-month-old girl as a slave.

A 48-year-old man and 29-year-old woman were exposed offering to sell the child for £35,000 in cash in a News of the World sting last year.

A jury at Inner London Crown Court found the pair guilty of conspiracy to commit child cruelty and slavery.

A man, 31, was cleared of the same offences. The pair, from north-east London, will be sentenced on 27 May.

They brokered the deal in a hotel meeting and a string of phone calls with an undercover reporter from the paper.

'Appalling case'

Child abuse detectives rescued the child and arrested the pair after details were passed on by the newspaper last year.

In September 2010, the man told a "friend" he wanted to sell a child he claimed was his daughter, the jury heard.

The friend contacted the News of the World and a meeting was arranged with two reporters posing as a prospective couple wanting to purchase the child.

A price of £35,000 was agreed after a number of meetings and phone calls.

Det Ch Supt Gordon Briggs, head of child abuse investigations at Scotland Yard, said: "This was an appalling case where individuals have attempted to sell a vulnerable child for their own personal gain and with no consideration whatsoever for her safety and future."

A court order has banned the names of the convicted man and woman.

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