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Dubai: An Algerian hospital employee has been arrested for kidnapping newborn babies, smuggling them to Tunisia, and selling them there, local media reported.

According to Al Nahar newspaper, the investigative judge of the Court of Sidi Mohamed in Algeria has ordered the temporary detention of the woman after she was found involved in kidnapping infants and smuggling them outside the country.

The newspaper reported that the accused, who was working at Mustafa Pasha Hospital, used to smuggle the kidnapped infants to Tunisia, to sell them in exchange of hefty amount of money.

This is not first case of hospital employees being found guilty of baby trafficking. Two years ago, an Algiers criminal court sentenced a doctor to 12 years in jail for kidnapping Algerian children born to single mothers and selling them for adoption in France.

Khelifa Hanouti, accused of illegally shipping the children abroad with the help of a notary, was also fined a million dinars (AED45,000).

Six French suspects of Algerian origin living in the French city of Saint-Etienne were sentenced in absentia to 10 years in prison plus a fine of 20,000 euros each.

A notary accused of writing “disclaimer documents” signed by single mothers was sentenced to five years in prison and a fine of 10,000 euros.

Four defendants were sentenced to three years suspended while another was acquitted.