Australian police are investigating a woman who entertained bids to buy her two children after she posted them for sale on eBay.
The Telegraph reports:
The woman, from Geelong in Victoria, was investigated by police after placing an auction item along with an extensive sales pitch and photographs of her son and daughter – both under the age of 10.
Several people placed bids on the children.
Police contacted eBay after receiving a call about the listing late last week. The site took the page down and assisted police to track down the woman. She told police the sale was a joke.
Victorian police said they accepted it was a joke and the woman would not be charged, but expressed concerns about the bidders in the auction.
“She said the page was created as a joke, but what worries us is the people bidding on the auction,” a police official told the Herald Sun newspaper. “Who knows who these people are. They could be pedophiles or anyone. It’s extremely disturbing.”
Police referred the case to the state’s department of human services, which is conducting a separate investigation.
“We need to get to the bottom of why she did this,” a department spokesperson said. “This action could attract the attention of the wrong sort of people, whether it was a joke or not, and the family need to understand the risks and receive advice around that.
An eBay spokesman said the case showed the risks of acting illegally on the site.
“It demonstrates that anyone posting anything illegal on our site is extremely foolish,” he said.