It looks like you're using an Ad Blocker.
Please white-list or disable AboveTopSecret.com in your ad-blocking tool.
Some features of ATS will be disabled while you continue to use an ad-blocker.
Italian police have arrested 18 people including a mayor, doctors and social workers for allegedly brainwashing vulnerable children into thinking their parents had abused them so they could then be sold to foster parents.
Police in the northern city of Reggio Emilia made the arrests after an investigation started in 2018 revealed an alleged network of carers who used methods including electroshock to make the children believe they had been sexually abused.
The network then allegedly gave the children to foster families in exchange for cash, while keeping gifts and letters sent to the children by their real parents hidden in a warehouse that was discovered by police.
To brainwash the children, those arrested allegedly forged child-like drawings with sexual connotations and used electroshock therapy as a "little memory machine" to create fake abuse memories, while the therapists are accused of dressing up as "wicked" children's story characters.
Some of the foster parents have been accused of sexually abusing the children they paid money for, La Repubblica reported.
The mayor of Bibbiano Andrea Carletti is accused of covering the crimes of the various social workers and city employees involved in the schemes.