A seller who lists his name as Dr. Ben Smith claims to have male and female organs
The Czech version of Craiglist, a site for buying and selling goods and services, has featured an advertisement for human kidneys for the past seven days. It is not apparent if the ad is hoax or not. No price is given.
The ad, in Czech, states: “Active human kidney for sale without pathological diseases, a good supply of arterial, venous blood drainage and innervation. Weight of adult male kidney is 147 grams. Weight of adult female kidney is 135 grams. Health is wealth. Interested buyers should contact Dr. Ben Smith.”
The person who posted the advertisement can only be contacted via Craiglist.cz, and no other contact information is available. No medical doctor by the name Ben Smith could be located in the Czech Republic, and the person who posted the ad did not respond to requests for more information.
Buying and selling of human organs is legal gray area. According to the World Health Organization, the problem of illegal organ trafficking is widespread, although data on the exact scale of the organ market is difficult to obtain.
Currently only Iran allows people to openly sell kidneys. All other nations have some form of legislation meant to prevent the illegal trading of organs, whether by an outright ban or through legislation that limits how and by whom donations can be made, according to Wikipedia. Many countries, including Brazil, Belgium, and France, use a system of presumed consent to increase the amount of legal organs available for transplant.
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), illegal organ trade occurs when organs are removed from the body for the purpose of commercial transactions. The WHO justifies these actions by stating that, “Payment for … organs is likely to take unfair advantage of the poorest and most vulnerable groups, undermines altruistic donation and leads to profiteering and human trafficking.” The origin of the kidney in the Czech ad on Craiglist could not be determined.
A report by Global Financial Integrity estimating that the illegal organ trade generates profits between $600 million and $1.2 billion per year worldwide.