Apparently one Chinese teen thought that last idea wasn’t such a bad one. Shanghai Daily reports that a 17-year-old student in Anhui Province — identified only by his surname, Zheng — sold his kidney to buy an iPad 2.
According to Shanghai Daily, the boy “wanted an iPad 2 but could not afford it.” However, a “broker” (aka black market organ hustler) contacted the boy online and offered to help Zheng sell his kidney for 20,000 yuan (about $3100). Apparently Zheng was so desperate for an iPad 2 that he agreed to the transaction, traveled to Chenzhou City in Hunan Province, and had his right kidney removed at Chenzhou No. 198 Hospital.
He was paid his 22,000 yuan (about $3400) right after the removal. He then went home. His mother questioned him after he showed up with a brand-new Apple tablet, and he confessed to her that he’d sold his kidney. She immediately contacted the police (by the way, selling organs on the black market is totally illegal), and they opened an investigation. They were unable to contact the agents Zheng had worked with — because said agents’ phones were mysteriously always switched off.
Zheng has since had post-surgery issues — the hospital, after all, was reportedly not qualified to perform an organ transplant. The hospital also claimed they had no knowledge of the surgery, though they did admit to contracting out the urology department to a Fijian businessman. That’s not sketchy at all.
The case remains under investigation, and Zheng’s health continues to deteriorate. Needless to say, Zheng now regrets selling his kidney for an iPad 2.
Even if they never catch the organ brokers, I hope Zheng recovers — and never ends up in a situation in which he needs more than one kidney.