A European Union prosecutor who says Israel has been trading with an elaborate organ trafficking network in Kosovo has brought the case to Pristina District Court, a report says.
Jonathan Ratel, who serves in Kosovo as part of the EU’s rule of law mission, has announced that the seven suspected Kosovons working as physicians for a clinic called Medicus in the capital, Pristina, belong to an international network that trades in the organs of people suffering from extreme poverty, the Associated Press reported.
The donors were from Moldova, Kazakhstan, Russia and Turkey and were enticed with the false promise of payments as much as 20 thousand dollars. However, they never got any money.
There are also charges pressed against an Israeli individual and a Turkish doctor who have not been arrested yet.
The organs were illegally removed from the victims and transplanted into rich recipients most of whom were from Israel, Canada, Germany and Poland.
Among the suspects are some of Kosovo’s most famous doctors. One of them used to be permanent secretary of health and gave the clinic a false license. Also Dr Lutfi Dervishi, a university professor, who is said to be the ringleader of the group, set up the operations.
Police were alerted to the network in November 2008, when a Turkish man, Yilmaz Altun, appeared exhausted at Pristina airport while waiting to board a flight home. When questioned by police, he said he had donated his kidney to an Israeli recipient. Kosovo law forbids the removal and transplant of organs.
The Council of Europe has launched a probe into the issue and its report will be released to the public in France on Thursday.