Thousands sick, arrests made in China milk scandal

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9/18/2008-New information continues to emerge about the contaminated Chinese baby formula, which is linked to the deaths of three babies and sickened thousands of others.

Current estimates indicate that nearly 6,200 children have become ill due to milk formula powder that contained melamine, a chemical used in plastics. Melamine was implicated in last year’s contaminated pet-food scandal during which an estimated 1,500 dogs and cats died after eating Chinese-manufactured pet food. Many of the children have developed urinary problems, including kidney stones, with some experiencing acute kidney failure. It is thought that the banned chemical was added to the milk to make it seem higher in protein.

Chinese milk producers have instituted massive recalls. This is the latest in a series of tainted Chinese product scandals, including one in 2004 that also involved baby formula.

Updates on the timeline of this latest incident show that certain companies and government officials may have known about the contamination for some time before it was finally made public. Eighteen arrests have been made in connection with the scandal. According to reports, six of the detained are accused of sold melamine, the rest are milk dealers.



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