Organ Trafficking

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  1. Illegal Organ Trade Market:$0.075 Billion ($75 Million)

Latest news and organ trafficking statistics. All data about the illegal trade in organs is collected from security agencies, criminal justice programs, public health organizations and other information sources.

According to various news reports, a man from Lebanon was offering people up to $55,000 if they were a match for a liver transplant.

The man, reportedly a mayor from a Lebanon city, arraigned for various people to have a liver compatibility test in Valencia, Spain. The tests reportedly cost $16,000 to conduct. After a match was found, the mayor reportedly offered up to $55,000 to the person in order for the liver transplant operation to take place.

Due to the ban on paying for organ transplants, the operation did not take place.

(More prices of black market organs and kidneys for sale.)

Source:  Al Goodman, “Lebanese mayor arrested in Spain, accused of attempted organ trafficking,” CNN, March 12, 2014.

According to media reports, a refugee from Syria reportedly sold his kidney to organ traffickers for $5,000.

The broker who arrainged the sale of the organ reportedly received $2,000. The trafficker told the press that he has arrainged 35 black market organ sales.

Previously, another refugee told the press that he sold his kidney for $7,000, while the broker who arrainged the sale received $700.

Selling organs is just one of the many black market activities that is taking place in Syrian refugee camps. Women are offering sex in order to receive money to survive and fathers are selling off their daughters to wealthy men.

(Organ black market sales and prices.)

Source:  John Johnson, “Syrian Refugees Selling Their Organs to Survive,” Newser, January 21, 2014.

As the conflict in Syria continues, refugees continue to turn to the black market in order to survive and generate money. It was previously reported that women were turning to prostitution, and the men were selling their daughters to other men.

In November 2013, it was reported that refugees from Syria were selling their kidneys in Lebanon to brokers in order to make money. According to a report in Der Spiegal, a man stated that he sold his kidney for $7,000. The customers who purchased the kidney and pay for the operations reportedly pays $15,000.

The kidney broker who arranges the transactions gets a $700 commission.

According to a kidney broker in the region, there are more sellers than buyers in the region.

(More prices of organs and kidneys on the black market.)

Source:  Ulrike Putz, “Lebanese Black Market: Syrian Refugees Sell Organs to Survive,” Spiegal Online, November 12, 2013.


In China, around 40 million people believe the ages of 20 to 40 have been diagnosed as having fertility problems. Health experts are attributing problems with men’s sperm to severe environmental pollution in China. According to the doctor of Shanghai’s main sperm bank, sperm grows abnormally and stops swimming when pollution is too severe.

In a 10 year study of male infertility in China, two-thirds of the semen  at a sperm bank failed to meet the World Health Organization’s standards on healthy sperm count levels.

In addition to a lack of healthy sperm, there is a shortage of willing donors to sperm banks.

Due to the shortage, women are turning to the black market in order to obtain sperm. According to press reports, woman are willing to pay up to $4,900 (30,000 Yuan) for sperm.

Source:  Gwynn Guilford, “Pollution has damaged Chinese sperm so much that a black-market shot costs up to $4,900,” Quartz, November 7, 2013.

Security agencies in Brazil registered 263 cases of human trafficking in the first half of 2013. The number of cases reported was 1,500 percent higher than the 17 human trafficking cases reported in the first half of 2012.

170 cases between January to June 2013 involved foreign nationals being trafficked into Brazil, while 90 cases were of domestic trafficking.

Of the international cases, 42 were for labor trafficking, 2 were of organ trafficking, and the rest were for sex trafficking.

64 of the domestic trafficking cases were for sex trafficking, 25 for labor trafficking and 1 case of illegal adoptions.

Source:  Miriam Wells, “Reports of Human Trafficking Rise Dramatically In Brazil,” Insight Crime, October 10, 2013.

Police in Turkey broke up an organ trafficking ring that was operating across the country. According to media reports, the traffickers were purchasing livers and kidneys for $10,000 (20,000 Turkish Liras) from people who wanted to sell their organs. The gang found these sellers through postings on the Internet.

The traffickers would then take the organs and sell them to medical patients who needed the organs. These patients paid up to $20,000 (40,000 Liras), giving the traffickers a $10,000 profit.

(More black market organ prices.)

Source:  “Twenty-six alleged organ trafficking gang members detained in Turkey,” Hurriyet Daily News, October 9, 2013.

In the first seven months of 2013, criminal justice programs in Guatemala reported that 22 children were kidnapped or stolen in the country.

The children are reportedly taken for the purpose of illegal adoptions and organ trafficking. Hospital workers such as doctors and midwives are reportedly inovled in the black market trade and assist the kidnappers by creating fake identification papers such as birth certificates.

Source: Marguerite Cawley, “Guatemala Children Stolen for Illegal Adoption, Organ Trafficking,” Insight Crime, August 6, 2013.

During the first six months of 2013, immigration officials in Costa Rica identified 20 cases of human trafficking within the country.

9 victims were trafficked for sexual exploitations, and 7 were victims of organ trafficking.

People who sold their organs in Costa Rica received $20,000 for their organs and were transported to Israel for the operation.

(More prices of organs and kidneys on the black market.)

Source: “Costa Rica Reported 20 Human Trafficking Victims this Year,” Costa Rica News, July 21, 2013.

A Canadian woman traveled to Pakistan in order to purchase a kidney transplant. The woman told the CTV News that she paid $10,000 for the operation. After returning to Canada, the kidney she received failed and later exams found that the kidney was no longer functioning.

(More prices of organs and illegal kidney transplants.)

Source:  “Canadians desperate for transplants turn to illegal organ trade,” CTV News, June 1, 2013.

Due to the one-child policy in China and a cultural preference for boys, there is an illegal industry of providing ultrasounds and abortions to women once it is determined that the unborn child is a female.

It is illegal in China to have an ultrasound in order to determine the gender of the baby. However, black market operators offer ultrasounds for $128-$193 (800 to 1,200 Yuan). If the parents wish to have an abortion, the cost of the procedure in China is $611 (3,800 Yuan).

(More prices of illegal goods on the black market.)

In addition to abortions, there are between 400 to 500 surrogacy clinics in China where customers pay in order conceive a child. In-vitro fertilization procedures are illegal in China as most customers due to procedure to conceive a boy.  A recent clinic that was registered as a cosmetics company was providing in-vitro fertilization for $161,000 (1 Million Yuan) for a successful birth. If the customers wanted a guarantee that they would receive a boy, then they would have to pay an additional $32,186 (200,000 Yuan).

The abortions of girls has lead to a ration of 118 boys for every 100 girls in China.

Source:  Gwynn Guilford, “Crackdowns show how China’s one-child policy keeps the black-market boy business churning,” Quartz, March 26, 2013.