Israeli Wanted By Interpol Arrested For Running Organ Harvesting Ring by the Forward

Israeli Wanted By Interpol Arrested For Running Organ Harvesting Ring

An Israeli national was arrested in Cyprus last week for his alleged involvement in an international human organ harvesting and trafficking ring, the Washington Post reported..

Moshe Harel, wanted by Interpol and Russian authorities for human trafficking since 2010, was allegedly one of the orchestrators of an organ trafficking ring run from a clinic in Kosovo called Medicus. While judges jailed Yusuf Ercin Sonmez, a Turkish doctor, in 2013 for being the main surgeon, Harel was determined to have been the “fixer.”

According to court documents, the clinic often paid young, poor Turkish men for one of their kidneys, paying them upwards of $10,000. Clients seeking organ transplants — from Israel, Germany and Canada, among other places — might pay as much as $150,000 for the operation.

“Medicus was one of a constellation of clinics operated by Sonmez, Harel and others,” Jonathan Ratel, the lead prosecutor, said in 2013. “We found clinics in Azerbaijan and other places and we believe there may be one in South Africa.”

“This was a cruel harvest of the poor,” Ratel added.

Contact Ari Feldman at or on Twitter @aefeldman


Ari Feldman

Ari Feldman

Ari Feldman is a staff writer at the Forward. He covers Jewish religious organizations, synagogue life, anti-Semitism and the Orthodox world. If you have any tips, you can email him at Follow him on Twitter @aefeldman.

Israeli Arrested For Human Organ Harvesting Ring

Your Comments

The Forward welcomes reader comments in order to promote thoughtful discussion on issues of importance to the Jewish community. All readers can browse the comments, and all Forward subscribers can add to the conversation. In the interest of maintaining a civil forum, The Forward requires that all commenters be appropriately respectful toward our writers, other commenters and the subjects of the articles. Vigorous debate and reasoned critique are welcome; name-calling and personal invective are not and will be deleted. Egregious commenters or repeat offenders will be banned from commenting. While we generally do not seek to edit or actively moderate comments, our spam filter prevents most links and certain key words from being posted and the Forward reserves the right to remove comments for any reason.

Recommend this article

Israeli Wanted By Interpol Arrested For Running Organ Harvesting Ring

Thank you!

This article has been sent!