International Organ Trafficking: In Brief [December 22, 2021]   [open pdf - 1MB]

From the Introduction: "The term 'organ trafficking' is commonly used to refer to a range of criminal activities, including illegal organ harvesting from a living or dead individual and the illegal sale and transplantation of human organs. While some experts include forms of enslavement or coercion to obtain an organ donation in the definition, U.S. government sources typically describe such crimes as trafficking in persons for the purpose of organ removal. Reflecting concerns over organ trafficking as a human rights abuse, a profitable transnational crime, and an activity in which U.S. citizens or businesses may be directly or indirectly complicit, many in Congress have sought to better understand and address the practice. Through proposed legislation, funding decisions, and oversight hearings, Congress has identified potential policy tools to address organ trafficking and has endeavored to identify and change the behavior of actors that may play a role in facilitating the illegal trade. [...] Organ trafficking may be considered part of a broader market that includes tissues, cells, or other human body parts or products, referred to by some as the 'red market.' Prominent international legal frameworks, and many national frameworks, including in the United States, prohibit any sale of human organs (with exceptions for compensation for expenses incurred by organ donors). The wide-scale prohibition of organ sales makes organ trafficking unique among other transnational crimes, because with rare exceptions, there is not a parallel, legal trade in the commodity."

Report Number:
CRS Report for Congress, R46996
Public Domain
Retrieved From:
Congressional Research Service: https://crsreports.congress.gov/
Media Type:
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