A 17-year-old student from China's impoverished Anhui province sold his right kidney to realize his dream. The young man wanted to buy Apple's iPad 2. The boy found the agents for selling his organ on the Internet, RIA Novosti reports with reference to China's Shanghai Daily.
The boy, named only as Zheng, was operated on at a hospital in Hunan province. The money, which the boy received, was enough to buy an iPad 2 and an iPhone.
The boy's mother knew nothing about her son's plans. The woman was very much surprised when her son returned home with expensive devices. The student did not want to tell his mother the truth at first. He later told her, though, that he only sold his kidney to buy Apple's products.
The shocked woman took her son back to the hospital where he had his kidney harvested. In the hospital, the woman was told that the surgical department had been leased out to an entrepreneur from another region. It has not been possible to find either the entrepreneur or the agents yet.
Chances to find the student's kidney are infinitely small. Most likely, Zheng's kidney has already been transplanted. In the meantime, the student's health condition has been worsening.
Zheng reportedly received 22,000 yuans ($3,400) for his kidney.
The sad story of the Chinese teenager proves that the trafficking of human organs in China still remains a prosperous business. The illegal business is widely spread in other countries too - Philippines, Pakistan, Egypt and Colombia among others. Many hospitals at those countries perform organ transplantation operations in which impoverished people are used as donors.
Last year, Chinese Vice Health Minister Huang Jiefu said at the international conference devoted to the problems of transplantology that China had not joined the international convention against the "organ transplant tourism." However, the official added, the new laws passed in the country resulted in the arrest of an organized criminal group, which was dealing with the trafficking of donor organs.
The laws banned voluntary organ transplantation from live donors, except for spouses, close relatives or adopted family members. Jiefu acknowledged that the human organs trafficking was a very serious problem for building a harmonic society in China. The official also admitted that many Chinese hospitals still perform illegal surgeries and practice illegal transactions to sell the organs to foreign states.
As for Apple's gadgets, the sales of iPad 2 and white iPhone 4 devices in China were launched on May 6. The sales started and ended hysterically: the stock at four Apple stores in Beijing and Shanghai was sold out in less than four hours. A fight among customers erupted in front of one of apple stores in Beijing. The store had to be temporarily closed.