Police in Malawi have charged a Chinese man with child trafficking after a BBC documentary accused him of filming children chanting racist phrases mocking themselves in Chinese, according to authorities in the southeast African country.
Deputy spokesperson for the Malawi Police Service, Harry Namwaza, told CNN the man, identified as Lu Ke, was charged with five counts of child trafficking Monday in a magistrates court in the capital Lilongwe.
Lu was arrested and extradited from Zambia last month after fleeing Malawi, the police spokesperson said.
“He appeared before the court yesterday (Monday) and he has been remanded to Maula Prison for 15 days as police work on finalizing the investigations,” Namwaza added. “He asked for court bail but he was denied as there is fear that he may run away as shown in his previous encounter.”
The BBC Africa Eye documentary alleged that Lu used Malawian children to film personalized greetings videos, sold online in China, some of which contained racist content.
In one clip, some of the children — said to be as young as 6 — sang: “I’m a black monster and my IQ is low,” in Chinese, the documentary showed.
The film sparked outrage in Malawi after it aired.
Lu did not have legal representation at the hearing on Monday and did not enter a plea, police spokesperson Namwaza said.