Facial recognition helps reunite kidnapped toddler with family after 32 years

Mao Yin reunited with his birth parents Monday in the Chinese city of Xi'an after being kidnapped as a toddler 32 years ago.

(CNN)A man who was abducted as a toddler 32 years ago was finally reunited with his biological parents Monday, with the help of facial recognition technology.

Mao Yin was taken from his family in 1988 when he was two years old while outside of a hotel in the Chinese city of Xi'an, in Shaanxi province. He was then sold to a childless couple in the neighboring Sichuan province, according to Chinese state-broadcaster CCTV.
Authorities said they were still investigating the initial abduction and did not release further information about Mao's adoptive parents.
    Mao was raised by his adoptive parents as Gu Ningning, without knowing his biological parents had been searching for him for more than three decades, the report said.
      In late April, police in Xian received a tip-off that a man in Sichuan province had bought a child from Shaanxi in the late-1980s, state news agency Xinhua reported.
      The police used facial recognition technology to analyze an old photo of Mao as a boy and came up with a simulated image of him as an adult, which was then compared with photos in the national database, according to CCTV. It did not give details about the database or the process of how the photos were compared.
      After a series of investigations and comparisons, the police tracked down a man in the city of Mianyang who resembled the image of Mao. He was later confirmed to be the missing son using a DNA test, Xinhua reported.