By Oisin Sweeney • 27 November 2020 • 8:43
CHINA has jailed six members of a trafficking ring who sold the organs of accident victims by tricking their families.
Among the convicted are several high ranking doctors, who helped illegally harvest organs at a hospital in Anhui province between 2017 and 2018. They would target the families of car crash victims and those who had died from cerebral hemorrhages, giving them fake consent forms that their loved one’s organs would be used in official donations to help China’s chronic shortage.
They would then move the bodies from the Huaiyuan County People’s Hospital into a van designed to look like an ambulance, where doctors would remove their livers and kidneys illegally to be sold to private individuals or other hospitals.
The ring was exposed when one man discovered the forms he’d signed for the donation of his late mother’s organs in 2018 were not authentic. He also could not find any record of the donation at Beijing’s China Organ Donation Administration Centre. When he was offered a large sum of cash to keep quiet by the hospital’s head of intensive care, Yang Suxun, he ‘was sure that something very strange was going on’.
He reported the trafficking ring to authorities, who jailed six of its members in July although the case has only been reported by Chinese media very recently. China has a chronic shortage of organs, with just 4.4 people per million people donating compared to Spain’s 49 people per million. Due to global outcry, the country stopped harvesting the organs of its prisoners in 2015 though the government has conceded that this has been difficult to fully enforce.
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Oisin is an Irish writer based in Seville, the sunny capital of Andalucia. After starting his working life as a bookseller, he moved into journalism and cut his teeth as a reporter at one of Ireland's biggest news websites. Since joining Euro Weekly News in November, he has enjoyed covering the latest stories from Seville, Spain and further afield - with special interests in crime, cybersecurity, and European politics. Anyone who can pronounce his name first try gets a free cerveza...
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