Dr Ricardo Asch has been arrested in Mexico after fleeing the U.S. fifteen years after he and another doctor were charged with harvesting eggs and stealing embryos of unsuspecting women being treated at the University of California’s Reproductive Health center. Asch, who was born in Argentina, was in charge of reproductive health for the University.
After their 1996 indictments Asch and Dr. Jose Balmaceda fled to South America. Asch was arrested last month in Mexico City on an outstanding Interpol warrant, even though he obtained dual Mexican/Argentine citizenship in 2001. The doctors apparently improperly transferred eggs stolen from patients to other patients without informing any of them, and at least 15 births results.
In addition, they hide $1 million in income from the IRS and accepted cash payments so that the hospital would not be paid and were apparently collected for doing unapproved fertility procedures. The hospital was forced to settled over 130 civil lawsuits and pay out $24 million in settlements.
The U.S. is working with the Mexican government to extradite Asch to the U.S. so he can be tried for his crimes. Balmaceda, who was born in Chile is believed to be practicing medicine in either Chile or Brazil.