Egyptian police have uncovered a criminal human organ trafficking syndicate specializing in the trade of kidney transplants in Cairo, local media reported Friday.
The “Youm7” newspaper reported that the members of a gang, which included doctors and several mediators, were looking for people who were ready to sell their kidneys for 25,000 Egyptian pounds (about 1,410 dollars).
The police also said that after certain tests and medical examinations some unsuspecting Egyptians have had their organs removed by surgeons.
According to the media outlet, the “donors” were given 5,000 Egyptian pounds before the surgical process, however, they could receive the rest of money only after they found yet another person ready to sell a kidney.
The newspaper added that all the members of the criminal community had been detained and their victims are testifying as witnesses.
In August, authorities in Egypt arrested several persons including doctors and nurses who were suspected of being members of a large criminal network engaged in human organ trafficking.
The Egyptian interior ministry said in a statement that three doctors, four nurses, three hospital workers and two agents were apprehended.
Some of those arrested were caught in the act of removing the kidneys and part of a man’s liver at a private hospital in Giza, Cairo.
The man reportedly sold his organs for 10,000 dollars.
The doctors operating on him were allegedly planning to transplant the organs to a patient.
According to the UN, poor Egyptians sell their kidneys and liver to organ traffickers who would, in turn, sell them to foreign patients in need of the organs in exchange for large sums of money.
In 2010, Egypt was ranked by the WHO as among the top five countries in the world where human organ trafficking is prevalent.