A Californian lawyer is facing jail for brokering 12 illegal surrogacies. But this is small change for Lu Jinfeng, a Chinese man who claims that he has brokered about 3,000 surrogate babies since 2004 — even though the practice is illegal in China.
A Californian lawyer is facing jail for brokering 12 illegal surrogacies. But this is small change for Lu Jinfeng, a Chinese man who claims that he has brokered about 3,000 surrogate babies since 2004 — even though the practice is illegal in China. According to the Global Times, a tabloid version of the official People’s Daily, surrogacy agencies used to be secretive and underground but today there are hundreds of them.
In China a woman can earn as much as 200,000 yuan (US$31,000) through surrogacy. Lately, to avoid legal problems, some surrogacy agencies have shifted their operations offshore in the hope of expanding the market. A surrogate is paid 10% – as soon as a fetal heartbeat is detected. She is then paid in 20% increments at 5 months, 7 months and 8 months. The final 30% instalment comes after the birth.
Two years ago, three surrogate mothers employed by Lu were caught by family planning officials in a residential building in Guangzhou. They were ordered to have abortions because they were all unmarried and therefore prohibited from having children.
The Global Times reports that Lu’s agency has shifted to Chicago. While it still targets Chinese couples, the surrogates they employ are US citizens or permanent residents. “We carry out all the surrogacy operations there because the State of Illinois rules that surrogacy is legal. The charge is comparatively higher. The whole package costs you 950,000 yuan ($150,000). But we guarantee you a baby with US citizenship within at most three years,” Sun told the Global Times.
It is impossible to verify how much of Lu’s claims are true. But certainly US authorities will be interested in investigating what they might regard as a migration scam. ~ People’s Daily, Aug 22
Chinese surrogates relocate to US
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