FYI.

This story is over 5 years old.

Gross: South Korean Customs Busts Dead Baby Pill Smugglers

This may take the cake for foulest thing I've written: around 17,000 pills filled with the dried, ground flesh of _dead babies_ have been confiscated by South Korean customs officials. Officials announced today that a series of 35 busts that netted all...
May 7, 2012, 4:00pm

This may take the cake for foulest thing I’ve written: around 17,000 pills filled with the dried, ground flesh of dead babies have been confiscated by South Korean customs officials. Officials announced today that a series of 35 busts that netted all those pills, which confirms the findings of a documentary by South Korean station SBS TV from last August that made the initial claims.

According to the Daily Mail, the South Korean Customs Service said that, after the SBS report, it increased searches of packages brought in from China. The officials claimed to have stopped 35 smuggling attempts since last year.

The pills are apparently packaged as “stamina boosters,” and are generally used as a medical cure-all. According to the SBS documentary, abortion clinics and hospitals in China deliver the remains of aborted fetuses and stillbirths — allegedly with mothers’ consent — to drug companies, who dry and package the flesh. The SBS team had pills tested and found they were 99.7 percent human. Holy hell.

From the Daily Mail:

‘Ethnic Koreans from north-east China who now live in South Korea are those who were mostly intending to use the capsules or share them with other Korean-Chinese’ said a customs official.

‘They are normally brought into South Korea in luggage or posted by international mail.’

Chinese newspapers have identified the north eastern provinces as the source of the human flesh capsules, in particular the Jilin region which is close to North Korea.

There have been disturbing reports that some babies were those who had perished in China’s notorious ‘dying rooms’ where youngsters are deliberately left to die because they were born into families that already had the limit of one child in country areas.

In order to keep its population down, China performs 13 million abortions a year – mainly because mothers sacrifice their newborns to avoid punishment such as severe fines or even a beating by the authorities.

There’s no shortage of cringe-inducing supplements used in traditional Chinese medicine — the use of rhinoceros horns has led to a 90 percent loss of the world’s rhino population, tiger penises are prized, and seahorse-based remedies have drastically affected their numbers — but this is simply absurd. One of the easiest ways to get rich in this world is to convince people that you’ve got the health solution, but this is way beyond fad diets and dodgy supplements. Sure, it’s good that custom agents have been successful in catching smugglers. But the fact that there’s even a market for this is simply foul.

Lead image via SBS.

Follow Derek Mead on Twitter: @drderekmead.

Connections: