(Hürriyet Newspaper, 30 June 2013)
Mecitözü Çayköy: Anyone wanna buy a kidney?
Smuggling Directorate, sayıng that "they wanted to
get my kidney for 15,000 TL. At first I agreed but then
I changed my mind and was threatened." A special team
then put the gang members under technical surveillance.
Following a nearly six-month effort, the police struck
and took the village chief of Çorum Mecitözü Çayköy,
H.S., complainant Ş.T., M.B., S.G. and Mümin Şener,
who arranged connections with hospitals, into custody.
The alleged leader of the gang, Tuncay D., vanished.
All of the suspects were released pending trial, except
for Sener, who was arrested.
According to interrogations and files, village chief H.S.
sold one of his kidneys and then maintained a connection
with the organ mafia. H.S. got in touch with villagers who
had a debt problem and told them "I sold one of my kidneys
and I'm quite healthy. A person can live comfortably with
one kidney." The villagers he convinced were put in touch
with gang members and were given fake ID's that purported
to show that they were related to potential kidney recipients.
The donor villagers were taught all the personal details of
the recipients so that when they went to get an Ethics
Council report they would be able to claim that they were
related to the recipients. Hürriyet phoned two villagers who
allegedly sold their kidneys. One of them, H.D., asserted that
he had not sold his kidney but that "suppose I did? What's it
to you? It's mine isn't it? I gave my kidney to a relative."
Another, A.Ş., said that he gave his kidney to someone who
needed it, in the name of humanity.
In six months seven villagers in Çayköy and nearby areas
sold their kidneys for 15,000 TL each. The gang members,
on the other hand, get between 30,000 and 50,000 TL from the
recipients. As for village chief H.S., he told police that he
didn't pressure anyone into selling their kidneys: "I gave
my kidney to save a life. I didn't get any money. I just did
a good deed. I didn't pressure the villagers. I just advised them."
Çorum, where kidneys are kidnapped.