Romania re-arrests 2 Israeli doctors

Prof. Levitt, Dr. Ziskind allegedly attempted to flee Romania, obstruct local probe into fertility clinic.

July 28, 2009 21:18
1 minute read.
Romania re-arrests 2 Israeli doctors

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Romanian authorities arrested two Israeli fertility doctors under investigation in Bucharest, Israeli Consul in Romania Lili Ben Harush announced on Tuesday evening. It was not immediately known why Prof. Nathan Levitt and Dr. Genya Ziskind were arrested, but it was assumed to be after an alleged attempt to escape the country and obstruct the local investigation into the suspected illegal activities of the Sabyc fertility clinic. Levitt and Ziskind were among the 30 people arrested in Bucharest last Monday on suspicion of paying Romanian women for donating their eggs to the Israel-owned Sabyc fertility clinic, some of whom, according to local media, were 15-year-old girls. After bail was posted, the two were among the 28 released from custody, but were banned from leaving Romania. The two clinic owners, father and son Harry and Yair Meron, are still in custody after being remanded for 29 days. Prosecutors in the country announced on Wednesday that a total of 22 charges would be filed against the suspects. According to a Romanian daily, the Sabyc fertility clinic was executing at least 2,000 artificial inseminations, each priced at an amount of between €8,000 and €10,000. The report said that the Bucharest-based clinic's earnings were estimated at around €20 million altogether. Levitt has denied that the clinic was in breach of Romanian law, maintaining that all necessary approvals for operating the clinic had been received in due time as requested by the authorities. On Thursday, Israel Tax Authority officials raided the Haifa offices and homes of Levitt and Ziskind on suspicion of committing tax fraud. Sharon Wrobel contributed to this report.

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