Father, son accused of selling diseased body parts on black market

CHICAGO -- Federal charges were filed against a Chicago father and son for allegedly selling body parts on the black market from people who thought they were donating to science.

The pair also allegedly sold parts they knew were diseased without telling their buyers, reports WBBM-TV.

It's a story of precious cargo and broken promises that donated bodies would go to medical research.

Donald Greene Sr. and his namesake were behind the now-shuttered Biological Resource Center of Illinois.

Those broken promises led the FBI to the center more than four years ago.

According to a search warrant, a mother was told her son's tissues would be donated to colleges and research centers. Instead, parts of him sold for $5,000.

The list goes on.

Bodies known to have HIV, sepsis and hepatitis were kept on ice, then sold.

Some were sold for up to $100,000.
In the charges filed, United States Attorneys repeatedly call it "a scheme to defraud customers of the Biological Resource Center of Illinois."

It's not illegal to dismember and broker body parts.

But it is illegal to knowingly sell remains positive for infectious disease, like what's alleged the Greenes did from 2008 to 2014.

The federal document charging the Greenes allege the men sold to Detroit Medical Center's Sports Medicine Department at least one specimen that "had previously tested positive for hepatitis. This fact was concealed by Donald A. Greene Sr.'s scheme to defraud."

Greene Sr. is charged with wire fraud. Junior faces a felony for intentionally concealing a crime.

Authorities were led to the Greenes while investigating Detroit body broker Arthur Rathburn. He is now in federal prison.
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