Kidney transplant racket busted; two held

Thane: Two persons were arrested from Delhi after Thane Police claimed to have busted a kidney transplant racket here, where the accused allegedly duped several ailing patients of lakhs of rupees.

Deputy Commissioner of Police, Parag Manere said the accused duo –identified as Kaif Khan, 27 and Neha Mehra, 33– both residents of Delhi were arrested last week while another accused Karishma is absconding.

According to police, the accused were apprehended after Badlapur police station received a complaint from an orthopaedic surgeon in December last year that he had been cheated by some persons from Delhi offering help to get a kidney for his 65-year-old father, who was suffering from renal failure.

Earlier, the doctor had struck a deal of Rs 20 lakhs for the transplant and paid Rs 5 lakh as advance as the cheats pretended that they were in search of a suitable donor, which later drew a blank.

The father-son duo were then called to Delhi, where at a hospital the cheats produced a dummy donor in front of them and pretended again that the match for the transplant was being done. However, when they informed that the right match has not been found, the duo returned to Mumbai. This process went on for a while last year, before the doctor finally approached police in December.

When investigations began, the police team probing the case first caught hold of the dummy donor–Piyush Nimawat of Gujarat. Close interrogation of Piyush revealed the entire racket which was going on with the help of a web portal, “I Need Kidney”.

According to the Assistant Commissioner of Police Crime Nagesh Lohar who also addressed a news conference here yesterday, the arrested duo along with one absconding accused Karishma informed the victim that they were employed with Max Hospital in Delhi and offered to help him in the transplantation.

Police further said that one of the cheats even issued a cheque of Rs 5 lakh towards refund after the process failed but it got bounced.

Police is presently probing two other cases of cheating, where in a similar manner, patients from Ajmer and Ambernath were cheated.

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