UK Court Finds Ekweremadu And His Wife Guilty Of Organ Trafficking
The Ekweremadus and their doctor were convicted guilty of plotting to bring a street trader to the UK in order to harvest his kidney.
By Omotayo Olutekunbi
Ike Ekweremadu, a former deputy senate president, and his wife Beatrice were convicted of organ trafficking in a case that was the first of its kind in the United Kingdom.
The two were found guilty of enabling the journey of a 21-year-old Lagos street trader to Britain with the intention of utilizing one of his bodily organs after a six-week trial at the Old Bailey. Also found guilty was a doctor named Dr. Obinna Obeta.
On Thursday, March 23, 2023, the jury determined that the trio had illegally planned to bring the young guy to London in order to take advantage of him for his kidney.
In his testimony before the court, the prosecutor, Hugh Davies KC, said that Ekweremadus and Obeta had mistreated the victim and other possible donors. “disposable assets – spare parts for reward,” adding that they entered an “emotionally cold commercial transaction,” with the young man.
It was the first conviction under the UK’s Modern Slavery Act on Thursday when the couple, their daughter Sonia, and Obeta were found guilty of organ harvesting at the Old Bailey.
According to The Guardian UK, Justice Jeremy Johnson will sentence the defendants at a later time.
Recall Ike and Beatrice were detained in the UK last year on suspicion of bringing a young man into the nation illegally with the intention of removing his kidney.
In an unsuccessful attempt to perform an £80,000 private surgery, the victim was misrepresented to physicians at the Royal Free Hospital in London as Sonia’s cousin.
According to reports, the young guy was given an unlawful incentive in exchange for being a donor for Sonia, who was forced to drop out of a master’s degree in cinema at Newcastle University due to renal problems.
Speaking further, Davies told the jury that Ekweremadu showed showed “entitlement, dishonesty, and hypocrisy.”
The prosecutor also said the former Deputy Senate President “agreed to reward someone for a kidney for his daughter – somebody in circumstances of poverty and from whom he distanced himself and made no inquiries, and with whom, for his own political protection, he wanted no direct contact.
“What he agreed to do was not simply expedient in the clinical interests of his daughter, Sonia, it was exploitation, it was criminal. It is no defence to say he acted out of love for his daughter. Her clinical needs cannot come at the expense of the exploitation of somebody in poverty,” Davies added.
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