Disturbing child sex dolls, including anatomically correct babies, sold online in Australia by Alibaba

One of the world’s largest online retailers is selling lifelike and anatomically correct sex dolls modelled on pre-pubescent girls and even infants and toddlers to Australian buyers.

An investigation by the advocacy group Collective Shout has unearthed a large number of disturbing dolls on the marketplace Alibaba, despite the e-commerce giant previously committing to removing such listings.

One of the merchants even provided a sickening video of a baby doll with replica genitalia, demonstrating how it could be ‘used’.

“I’ve been an activist with Collective Shout for 10 years and this is the most disturbing content I’ve seen,” campaigner Melinda Liszewski said. “It is deeply distressing to view.”

The investigation found large numbers of replica child dolls marketed as “young girl”, “flat chest” and “sex dolls for men” sold on Alibaba by 18 different suppliers.

Some of the models were as small as 65cm, which is roughly the height of a six-month-old baby.

The dolls discovered for sale ranged in price from $250 to $500.

“At a time when there is more awareness of child sexual abuse than ever, how is it that a multi-billion dollar mainstream corporation like Alibaba can profit from normalising the rape of babies?” Ms Liszewski said.

Owning a child sex abuse doll is illegal under Australian law but the sellers exposed by Collective Shout offered shipping to local buyers here.

Alibaba is a Chinese-based company that has rapidly expanded globally in recent times, and raked in more than AU$102 billion in revenue last year.

Caitlin Roper is a campaigns manager at Collective Shout and a PhD candidate researching female-bodied sex dolls and robots.

Dolls such as those uncovered on Alibaba are far from harmless, Ms Roper said.

“Child sex abuse dolls are designed to facilitate users’ fantasies of raping a child,” Ms Roper said. “This is not a victimless crime – these lifelike dolls normalise and legitimise the sexual use and abuse of children.”

An Australian Institute of Criminology report in 2019 found that lifelike child dolls could lead to an increase in the sexual abuse of children.

One listing described a toddler doll as “cute” and “soft” and 80cm tall.

Another was for a female doll described as “small breast, young girl” and coming in pieces so it could be disassembled and stored in a suitcase.

It’s not the first time Alibaba has come under fire for selling child sex dolls, with a 2018 investigation by Hong Kong Free Press forcing it to remove multiple listings.

In January this year, another media report – this time by the Straits Times – exposed various sellers of dolls.

In a statement, a spokesperson for Alibaba said it proactively monitors its marketplace for illicit listings such as these.

“We maintain a robust product listing policy that prohibits the listing by third-party sellers of any items depicting or suggestive of sex involving minors, and third-party sellers in breach of the policy are subject to our disciplinary measures.

“After notification of a number of such listings, we have taken action to remove them.”

Alarmingly, Ms Liszewski said some of the sellers of the child sex dolls she uncovered were ‘verified’ by the company.

Collective Shout is campaigning for credit card and money transfer companies to cease their business with Alibaba until it does more to stop the sale of child dolls.