The man who killed a toddler in a hit-and-run case that outraged China has been jailed, but the country is still searching for answers as to why 18 passers by left the child lying in the road.

The security camera footage of two-year-old Wang Yue wandering into the road at Guangfo Hardware Market and being hit by a white van went viral last year.

Tens of pedestrians and cyclists sped past the bleeding girl, lying in agony, and she was run over for a second time by another van.

wang yue

Security video camera footage run by China's TVS via APTN, a person cycles by 2-year-old girl, identified as Wang Yue, after she was run over by a van in Foshan

She later died in hospital of her injuries, after a female refuse collector came to her aid.

Hu Jun, the van driver, has been jailed for three-and-a-half years, Xinhua news agency said, but has been given a lenient sentence for turning himself in.

The report said Hu was convicted of "involuntary homicide" by a court in Foshan, south China.

Hu told the court he had thought he had hit something, but did not realise it was a child. He had paid part of the toddler's medical expenses.

The rubbish collector who did help the little girl, Chen Xianmei, has been hailed as a "national role model".

Her family received almost £30,000 to help with payments for the medical treatment.

Yue's mother said she had picked her daughter up from nursery and brought her to their home in the market, but left her unattended for a moment while as she rushed to bring in washing in from sudden rain.

wang yue parents

Journalists surround the parents of Wang Yue in a hospital in Guangzhou

The little girl ambled off, walking around 200ft before she was crushed by the van, in full view of four open stalls. All stall-owners say they did not see her.

The incident led to calls for a Good Samaritan law, as Chinese commentators said people were unlikely to stop for fear of being blamed.

More than 4.5 million people have left their comments on the Internet, many calling for a law to shield people who come to an injured person's aid.

WARNING: GRAPHIC VIDEO