A 17-year-old Egyptian woman reported her husband to the police for secretly selling her kidney in cahoots with a doctor at a private hospital, press reports said.
The wife, Warda Al-Sayed, said her husband was going through financial difficulties.
She told police he drugged her by putting sleeping pills in her juice, then took her to hospital, where he took away her jewelry and the doctor removed her kidney.
When she came to, the husband made her believe she had a car accident, Al-Sayed told the Egyptian daily Al-Masaa last Wednesday.
The young woman said she was not aware of what happened until 20 days after the surgery, when she suffered complications and went to see a doctor, who told her that her right kidney was missing.
High poverty rates in Egypt coupled with other social problems has prompted many people to sell their organs for money, giving rise to a human organ trafficking mafia.
British daily The Guardian reported that organ trade goes by a set price list – kidneys, the most expensive, fetch around 80,000 dollars each, which is shared by the donor, doctor, and several intermediaries.
The paper said penalties in Egypt were not harsh enough. Doctors involved in the trade can have their medical licenses revoked at most, if proven guilty in the first place.
The paper added that culprits usually get away with their crimes as a team of professional lawyers specializes in these cases.
(Translated from Arabic by Sonia Farid).