ANKARA: A wide-ranging organ trade network led by Jordanian and Palestinian nationals in Istanbul has been busted by the Turkish authorities.
Ten people, four ringleaders and six individuals who were about to sell their organs or get transplants, were caught and four were immediately imprisoned.
The network was running the business using forged documents at a hospital in Beylikduzu, on the European side of Istanbul, in exchange for $50,000 per case.
Six people who were kept by the network in a hotel in Istanbul were released on condition of judicial control. The patients were Jordanian and Palestinian nationals.
Unregulated organ trafficking and illegal transplant have shown a shocking trend in the region for a while. Last year, several Syrian refugees were found to be selling their organs on the black market out of desperation to survive financially.
Social media platforms, especially Facebook, were used extensively by organ brokers for illegal operations offering money to desperate refugees who would sell their livers or kidneys. However, the donors were only paid half the agreed price and usually left without care after the operation.