Cash-for-kidney doctors free - report

2012-12-15 10:36

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Durban - Charges against six surgeons for their role in an international cash-for-kidneys scandal have been withdrawn in the KwaZulu-Natal High Court, according to a report on Saturday.

Acting judge Antonie Troskie granted permanent stay of prosecution on Friday, the Saturday Star reported.

He found Professor John Robbs, Professor Ariff Haffejee, Dr Mahadev Naidoo, Dr Neil Christopher, Lindy Dickson and Melanie Azor had their right to a fair trial infringed after a seven-and-a-half-year delay in bringing the matter to trial.

Troskie also found they suffered trial prejudice and personal prejudice because of the delays.

"I cannot accept that the delay was justified. The reasons given are not convincing," Troskie said in granting the stay.

According to the report, the surgeons brought an application in December 2011 in which they claimed they did not have any knowledge that poor Brazilians had been paid by wealthy Israelis for their kidneys.

About 90 illegal kidney transplants took place between 2001 and 2003 and a total of 224 kidney transplants took place in Johannesburg, Cape Town and Durban, the Saturday Star reported.

The surgeons denied any involvement in the screening and administration of foreign patients, according to court papers.

- SAPA

Read more on:    durban  |  health
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