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Wednesday Feb 14 2018

Eight more suspected victims come forward in Hafizabad spinal fluid case


HAFIZABAD: Eight more women have emerged as suspected victims of a gang accused of extracting spinal fluid from unsuspecting ‘patients’ and attempting to sell it on the black market.

The women belong to the city’s Bahawalpura area.

Three of the women were shifted to DHQ Hospital for a formal medical checkup, while the other women were referred to hospitals in Lahore.

The total tally of the suspected victims has climbed to 24 after sixteen women were found on Thursday to have syringe marks on their spinal cords, Dr. Rehan Azhar of DHQ hospital said.

The gang was busted on Monday after reports surfaced that it had illegally extracted spinal fluid from unwilling women under the pretext of a ‘medical checkup’.

Two of the gang suspects have been shifted to Lahore for a polygraph test, the DPO said. He added that the investigation will be completed in the next two days.

The father of a 17-year-old victim had informed the police that a sample had been taken from his daughter by people who claimed they were employees of a hospital and said that the spinal fluid was a necessary part of a medical checkup, which was required for financial assistance for the victim's dowry, Geo News reported on Tuesday.

According to the father, his daughter started feeling weak after returning home. He then reported the incident to the police, informing them about the place where her daughter’s ‘medical test’ had taken place.

Police then raided the location in Muhalla Bahawalpura and arrested the gang’s members.

"Gang members pretended to be from the DHQ hospital. The gang consists of three men and a woman. We were informed by the victim’s father of her sample being taken on the promise of a dowry package being provided under a government scheme,” SHO Hafizabad had said on Monday.

The number of gang members nabbed are now said to be five.


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