A 1-year-old girl snatched from her mother's arms nine days ago on Mexico City's east side was found Saturday "safe and sound" by police at the doors of a church, officials said.

The Federal District's Public Safety Secretariat said in a communique that the child, "stolen by trickery from her mother's arms as she was going to market" in the Agricola Pantitlan suburb near the San Juan Canal subway station, was found thanks to an Amber Alert being issued.

Last Feb. 1 the little girl's mother "asked the authorities for help," for which they issued the alert that paid off Saturday morning.

Two agents of the Pantitlan Citizens Protection Unit, or UPC, "heard a baby crying" at the doors of a church with "no adults around to take care of her," which led to her identification and return to her parents.

Taking part in the recovery was the Center for Missing and Disappeared Persons, or CAPEA, of the Federal District Attorney General's Office, which in the last six years has received between 1,400 and 2,000 reports of missing persons.

The source said that the stealing of infants like the little girl recovered Saturday occurs never more than once every two months, often as the result of "parents fighting over custody."

According to CAPEA statistics, in 2012 there were 1,870 cases of lost or disappeared persons in the Mexican capital, a city of 8 million inhabitants that increases to 20 million if the entire suburban area is included.

The number of cases was 2.1 percent greater than in 2011 but 5.4 percent less than in 2007. EFE