Chinese authorities indict five over teen selling kidney for iPhone and iPad

zheng scar

Authorities in south China have laid charges against five people in a chase that, we hope, will be unique in technology history. The five are charged with intentional injury for organizing the removal — and subsequent transplant — of a kidney from a seventeen year-old high school student. According to China’s official Xinhua news agency, the defendants include organ brokers, a hospital contractor, and a surgeon. Other suspects are still being investigated.

The kidney removal and transplant took place last April. The student, identified only by the surname Wang, was given 22,000 yuan (about US$3,500) for his kidney. He then returned home, where his mother immediately questions how he was able to afford a new iPad 2 and iPhone. The student told her he had sold one of his kidneys.

The mother called police, and the story made Chinese television news. Initial reports had Wang’s condition worsening following the surgery, which was apparently conducted in a facility not certified for organ transplantation. Xinhua reports the student now suffers from renal problems and his condition is worsening.

According to the report, the scheme was hatched by one of the defendants who sought to make quick money through illegally selling kidneys; Xinhua describes as “penniless and frustrated over gambling debts.” He had another of the defendants trawl online chat rooms looking for potential donors, and had another lease an operating room at a local hospital’s urology department. The transplant itself was conducted by still another defendant. Overall, the originator of the scheme received 222,000 yuan (about US$35,000) for the deal: about 10 percent went to Wang, while the rest was split between the surgeon and other people involved in the deal.

China only banned trade in human organs in 2007, but a significant illegal market exists. China’s Ministry of Health reports that about 1.5 million people in China are in need of organ transplants, but only around 10,000 transplants are conducted every year. The government has set up a voluntary organ donation system, but it is not yet meeting the need, prompting many to seek organs on the black market.

Giveaways

Enter our giveaway to get a free, limited-edition Star Wars-inspired parka

It's giveaway time! This week we're giving away a limited-edition Star Wars Empire Crew Parka. The jacket is an exact replica of what Lucas and his team wore while filming on the Hardangerjokulen Glacier in Norway back in 1979.
Gaming

Soulja Boy’s ‘new’ console appears to include stolen Nintendo games

Rapper Soulja Boy recently released his SouljaGame console, and it includes several emulated games that appear to be stolen from companies like Nintendo, SNK, and Capcom. A handheld version is also available.
Gaming

‘Fortnite’ streamer reportedly arrested after abusing wife while on Twitch

An Australian Fortnite streamer who goes by the name MrDeathMoth abused his pregnant wife while he was live on Twitch. An anonymous cybersecurity expert took matters into his own hands, resulting in the arrest of the streamer.
Digital Trends Live

CEO of shoe startup OB/VS talks about exploration-focused footwear

Today we had the founder of OB/VS Kelly Dachtler to talk about why he wanted to start a footwear company, what makes the shoes his firm manufactures unique, and what future products are in store.
Business

Chinese court upholds Qualcomm's complaint that Apple infringed on two patents

Apple is following the FTC's lead and has sued Qualcomm for a massive $1 billion in the U.S., $145 million in China, and also in the U.K., claiming the company charged onerous royalties for its patented tech.
Deals

Need a last-minute gift? Get an iPhone Wireless Charger for under $20

Whether you're looking for stocking stuffers or gift ideas, these deals from Mophie, Anker, and Yootech can get you a wireless charging pad for cheap. Don't settle for wired charging if you don't have to.
Computing

Looking for an Apple MacBook below $900? Woot has you covered

If you're looking for a great deal on an Apple MacBook, then Amazon's Woot may just have what you have been seeking. It has Macbooks available for only $810 with Intel M3 CPUs, 8GB of RAM, and 256GB SSDs.
Mobile

On a budget? We found the best affordable smartphones you can buy

Here are the best cheap phones for anyone working with a tight budget, whether you're a fan of stock Android or marathon battery life. Find out what you can get for under $500 or far, far less as we round up the best budget smartphones.
Mobile

Put down the controller and pick up the best phones for gaming on the go

Which phones are the best if all you want to do is play some mobile games? We've done the hard work and put together a list of the best gaming phones on Android and iOS, so you can keep playing and winning.
Mobile

Protect your new iPhone with one of our favorite iPhone XR cases

Apple's new iPhone range is the toast of 2018, with beautiful style and more power than you can shake a stick at. But beauty can often be fragile -- keep the damage to a minimum with the best iPhone XR cases.
Computing

Don't know what to do with all your old DVDs? Here's how to convert them to MP4

Given today's rapid technological advancements, physical discs are quickly becoming a thing of the past. Check out our guide on how to convert a DVD to MP4, so you can ditch discs for digital files.
Mobile

Apple's iOS 12.1.1 makes it easier to switch cameras in FaceTime

After months of betas, the final version of iOS 12 is here to download. The latest OS comes along with tons of new capabilities, from grouped notifications to Siri Shortcuts. Here are all the features you'll find in iOS 12.
Mobile

New Apple Watch begins saving lives one week after getting EKG feature

The Apple Watch Series 4 was updated almost a week ago with a new feature that allows users to take electrocardiogram tests -- and already it seems like the new feature is saving lives.
Mobile

The best smartphone stocking stuffers for a very techy Christmas

If you've got a tech-loving smartphone enthusiast to buy for, we can help you out. Here's a selection of top phone accessories that would make amazing stocking stuffers so you can have a very Merry Christmas.