View Full Version : Police smash Israeli organ-trafficking ring

Magda Hassan
04-09-2010, 10:58 AM
Police smash Israeli organ-trafficking ring

A retired army brigadier general is among six suspects arrested by Israeli police investigating an organ-trafficking ring, police say.
The organisation offered as much as $100,000 (65,600) for kidneys, which were transplanted by doctors in poor countries, a sting operation uncovered.
Police said they had been "shocked" by the extent of the smuggling ring.
Retired Gen Meir Zamir, arrested in connection with the trafficking, won a medal of valour in the Yom Kippur War.
'Dream come true'
The trafficking ring came to light after a 50-year-old woman from Nazareth came to police.
http://newsimg.bbc.co.uk/shared/img/o.gif http://newsimg.bbc.co.uk/nol/shared/img/v3/start_quote_rb.gif We ran an undercover investigation and we were shocked by the proportions of this http://newsimg.bbc.co.uk/nol/shared/img/v3/end_quote_rb.gif

Superintendent Ahron Galor

She told them she was flown to Azerbaijan where doctors removed her kidney.
On her return to Israel she was expecting to be given $100,000, but she never received the money.
Another 18-year-old man complained to police after he was offered $80,000 and flown to the Philippines to have the operation.
"We ran an undercover investigation and we were shocked by the proportions of this," Police Superintendent Ahron Galor told Ynet News.
"We learned there are many people willing to sell a kidney for just 10,000. These are people who have severe financial difficulties, for whom such a sum is a dream come true."
Forging documents
The traffickers advertised online, suggesting there was another solution for people who had been waiting for kidney transplants for years.
They offered the kidneys for sale for $140,000.
As well as Gen Zamir, two lawyers were among those arrested in the sting operation.
The lawyers are suspected of forging documents which said the recipient and donor were related.
Police said members of the ring tried to cover their tracks by hiding the Israeli medical records of the donors.
This made it hard for donors to be treated if they became sick following the surgery.


Ed Jewett
04-09-2010, 08:02 PM
Busted Israeli organ trafficking ring includes Brigadier General

According to Israeli press, police arrested six men in northern Israel Tuesday, in a crack-down on illegal human organ trafficking.
Police had launched (http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/pages/ShArtVty.jhtml?sw=organ+trafficking&itemNo=1161405) an investigation after receiving a number of complaints from people who had responded to a newspaper ad saying respondents would be paid $100,000 for a kidney. The respondents participated, giving up a kidney in surgery completed out of Israel, but when they returned home, they were not paid.
The investigation culminated in a raid which resulted in the arrests of an Israeli reserve Brigadier General along with two lawyers. Police said they uncovered a large operation at work in Israel, one that takes advantage of people experiencing kidney problems as well as people with financial difficulties. The traffickers are charging donees around $120,000 for a kidney, and while they promise organ donors $100,000, they are only paying a fraction of the money promised, if they receive any payment at all.
Israel only allows (http://www.jta.org/news/article/2010/04/08/1011493/israeli-organ-trafficking-ring-arrested) voluntary organ donations, having ended the system of payments for organs in 2008 in a bid to end organ trafficking (http://www.jpost.com/HealthAndSci-Tech/Health/Article.aspx?id=172579). Donors are taken out of Israel for surgery, and some donors are suffering the effects of substandard surgery.
The arrested (http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-3872624,00.html) Brigadier General is 62 year old Meir Zamir, who received a medal for valour for his actions in the Yom Kippur war. It is not known what charges the six men were arrested on.
Police said the organ traffickers were making millions from their scheme. Israel has been a home (http://www.wrmea.com/component/content/article/321-2009-november/6602-israeli-organ-trafficking-and-theft-from-moldova-to-palestine.html) for organ traffickers for years, although the trade is now widespread (http://www.policyinnovations.org/ideas/briefings/data/000165) around the world.
The United Nations estimates that between 3,400 to 6,800 kidney transplants each year are from forced transplants, but say that estimate is likely low.
In 2009, the FBI smashed an American-run organ trafficking ring in New Jersey that included (http://www.theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/israeli_organ_trafficking_much_ado_about_something/0018022) several Rabbis. 44 people were arrested in the sting operation. The high profile New Jersey bust included several mayors and two assemblymen: Hoboken Mayor Peter Cammarano III, Secaucus Mayor Dennis Elwell, Jersey City Deputy Mayor Leona Beldini, state Assemblyman L. Harvey Smith and state Assemblyman Daniel Van Pelt.