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Sale of Body Parts at UCLA Alleged
Sat Mar 6, 7:55 AM ET Add Top Stories - Los Angeles Times to My Yahoo!


By Charles Ornstein Times Staff Writer

Two UCLA employees have been placed on leave amid a criminal investigation into allegations that they stole body parts from cadavers donated to the medical school and sold them for personal gain, school officials and others familiar with the investigation said Friday.


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People familiar with the case said it probably involved dozens of cadavers donated to the school's willed body program over a period of five years. If so, it would dwarf previous scandals involving the sale of cadaver parts at other medical centers around the country.


Authorities, who first became aware of problems Feb. 26, said they are trying to determine the full extent of the alleged wrongdoing and potential charges.


The UCLA program, established in 1950 as the first of its kind in the nation, receives about 175 donated bodies each year and makes cadavers available for medical education and research.


The university is still enmeshed in a lawsuit filed in 1996 involving a previous scandal over the way cadavers had been disposed of for several decades.


UCLA School of Medicine officials released few details Friday other than to confirm that the two employees had been placed on leave and that a criminal investigation had been launched.

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