Human corpses harvested in multimillion-dollar trade
2012-07-31 0:00

From: SydneyMorningHerald

A grisly trade in human body parts leaves relatives grieving and some recipients at risk of life-threatening disease.

On February 24, Ukrainian authorities made an alarming discovery: bones and other human tissues crammed into coolers in a grimy white minibus.

Investigators grew even more intrigued when they found, amid the body parts, envelopes stuffed with cash and autopsy results written in English.

What the security service had disrupted was not the work of a serial killer but part of an international pipeline of ingredients for medical and dental products that are routinely implanted into people around the world.


“Two ribs, two Achilles heels, two elbows, two eardrums, two teeth, and so on’’ ... a relative holds a picture of Oleksandr Frolov, some of whose body parts were found during a raid by Ukrainian authorities.


The seized documents suggested that the remains of dead Ukrainians were destined for a factory in Germany belonging to the subsidiary of a US medical products company, Florida-based RTI Biologics.

RTI is one of a growing industry of companies that make profits by turning mortal remains into everything from dental implants to bladder slings to wrinkle cures. The industry has flourished even as its practices have roused concerns about how tissues are obtained and how well grieving families and transplant patients are informed about the realities and risks of the business.

In the US alone, the biggest market and the biggest supplier, an estimated two million products derived from human tissue are sold each year, a figure that has doubled over the past decade.

It is an industry that promotes treatments and products that literally allow the blind to see (through cornea transplants) and the lame to walk (by recycling tendons and ligaments for use in knee repairs). It’s also an industry fuelled by powerful appetites for bottom-line profits and fresh human bodies.


’’I was in shock’’ ... Kateryna Rahulina says she did not give permission for the body of her mother Olha to be harvested.
In the Ukraine, for example, the security service believes that bodies passing through a morgue in the Nikolaev district, the gritty shipbuilding region located near the Black Sea, may have been feeding the trade, leaving behind what investigators described as potentially dozens of “human sock puppets” — corpses stripped of their reusable parts.

Industry officials argue that such alleged abuses are rare, and that the industry operates safely and responsibly.

For its part, RTI didn’t respond to repeated requests for comment or to a detailed list of questions provided a month before this publication.

In public statements the company says it “honours the gift of tissue donation by treating the tissue with respect, by finding new ways to use the tissue to help patients and by helping as many patients as possible from each donation".

’Our misfortune’

Despite its growth, the tissue trade has largely escaped public scrutiny. This is thanks in part to less-than-aggressive official oversight — and to popular appeal for the idea of allowing the dead to help the living survive and thrive.

[...]

Read the full article at: smh.com.au






Related Articles
’No give, no take’ for organs?
Rising Obesity May Lead to Shortage of Organs for Transplantation
Grow Your Own Organs
Facebook Launches Organ Donation Tool
Israel admits harvesting organs
U.S. Soldiers Allegedly Killed Afghan Civilians, Kept Body Parts As Trophies
Man convicted in lucrative body parts scheme
Body Parts Arriving In The Mail At Canadian Schools, Possibly Linked To Alleged "Canadian Psycho" Killer Luka Magnotta
Severed human head, hands, feet found in LA Park


Latest News from our Front Page

West’s tributes to late Saudi King reveal hypocrisy not democracy
2015-01-27 2:16
Hypocrisy is not usually regarded as a virtue of leadership, yet judging by the gushing tributes paid to Saudi Arabia’s King Abdullah by various Western governments and establishment figures on his death, there are those who believe it should be. In the UK this hypocrisy has been stretched to breaking point with the decision to fly the flags over Downing ...
Millions of GMO insects could be set loose in Florida Keys
2015-01-27 2:34
Millions of genetically modified mosquitoes could be released in the Florida Keys if British researchers win approval to use the bugs against two extremely painful viral diseases. Never before have insects with modified DNA come so close to being set loose in a residential U.S. neighborhood. "This is essentially using a mosquito as a drug to cure disease," said Michael Doyle, executive ...
Furguson Scared The Super - Rich So Bad They're Planning Exits
2015-01-27 0:22
According to a speaker at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Ferguson and Occupy absolutely terrified the world’s super-rich, and now they’re buying airstrips and farms in remote locations to escape to. At the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, which was held between January 21-24, over 2,500 leaders in the fields of business, international politics, academia and journalism met to discuss ...
The Ring Of The Nibelungs
2015-01-27 0:20
Dark Kingdom: The Dragon King (also known as Ring of the Nibelungs, Die Nibelungen, Curse of the Ring, and Sword of Xanten) is a 2004 German television film directed by Uli Edel and starring Benno Fürmann, Alicia Witt, Kristanna Loken, and Max von Sydow. The film is based on the Norse mythology story Völsungasaga and the German epic poem Nibelungenlied, ...
Google Street View Shows NAACP Bombing a Hoax
2015-01-26 22:58
Caught in the act: NAACP passing off old soot marks as new in ‘bomb’ hoax NAACP Colorado Chapter President Henry D. Allen Jr. has been caught in the act of passing off old soot marks as new damage from the recent ‘explosion’ at the Colorado Springs chapter headquarters. Although Gotnews.com has previously remarked on the minimal damage as reported by the ...
More News »