PRAGUE (Reuters) – Czech prosecutors have charged six medics with illegally selling human skin tissue collected from dead people to a clinic in the Netherlands, the state attorney’s office said on Friday.
Five of the six were doctors and lab workers based at the Brno Teaching Hospital.
"They perfectly legally took skin tissue from dead bodies and then illegally sold them to foreign tissue banks," Jan Sladky, deputy chief of the Brno state attorney’s office, said.
Proceeds from the trade went into their private accounts and accounts of unspecified health foundations, and not to the hospital, he said.
He did not name the charged, who could face several-year prison sentences if convicted.
The charges accuse them of illegally selling the skin tissue to the Euro Skin Bank of the Netherlands. A Euro Skin Bank spokesman declined to comment.
Three of the accused medics still work at the hospital, its spokeswoman Anna Nesvadbova said, adding they could not be dismissed on the basis of the charges. Czech law allows the sale of organs and tissues for the cost of obtaining them but not for profit, the hospital said. (Additional reporting by Niclas Mika in Amsterdam)