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2 Texas women charged with buying, selling baby
By LINDA STEWART BALL
Associated Press
2011-11-12 08:27 AM
A West Texas woman is accused of buying a 7-week-old infant from the child's mother for $2,000 _ to be paid in installments, Abilene police said Friday.

The woman, Marilu Munoz, 27, and the child's mother, Joana Delacruz Huerta, 29, were charged late Thursday with the sale or purchase of an infant, a third-degree felony, police said.

Police said they found out about the alleged sale from an anonymous tip Thursday morning.

Some of the scheduled payments had already occurred, police Sgt. Lynn Beard said.

"It was a one-on-one kind of thing, just someone who wanted a baby," Beard said.

Huerta remained in the Taylor County Jail on $5,000 bond. Munoz was released after posting bail Friday. Neither woman could be reached for comment, and no attorneys were listed for either of them in jail records.

Police said Huerta admitted that she had been pregnant and told officers where she thought the baby might be. Police found the child at an Abilene residence unharmed.

Police said they did not know who the baby's biological father was or how the two women had initially crossed paths. Munoz's husband, an illegal immigrant whose name was not released, was placed on an immigration hold at the county jail, Beard said.

The infant was taken into custody by Child Protective Service, authorities said.

Baby-selling is a far cry from legal adoption in several ways but "in adoption, you're not allowed to pay the birth mother or birth father," McDermott said. Although a birth mother can be reimbursed for her living expenses in some states, there are very strict laws about what can and can't be paid and "no money is paid to the birth mother," the lawyer said.

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