Incidents » Crimes
Author`s name Ольга Савка

Bodies of 351 infants found in prestigious Parisian hospital

The remains of dead babies were carefully kept according to all the rules in standard containers for anatomical samples

Hundreds of baby bodies were in the morgue of Saint Vincent de Paul hospital. This relates to the babies who were either stillborn or died shortly after their birth. Saint Vincent de Paul is one of the most prestigious hospitals in France. It has always been known for its stainless reputation. Earlier on the investigation suggested that babies' organs could have been used for illegal experiments, Russian Channel 1 reports. It is highly likely that these bodies would have been kept in the hospital longer if not for the diligence of one of the officials. A married couple claimed that they could not get their stillborn baby's body for the burial. An employee of the hospital assumed that the body had been sent to crematorium by mistake. Usually bodies of stillborn babies must be kept for 10 days before cremation. 

However, there were no records in the cremation logbook. This led to suspicion and parents insisted on checking the hospital's morgue. A terrible discovery followed. The horrible mortuary was located in but a few steps from the place where newborn babies are crying and their parents come to have a look at them.

The remains of dead babies were carefully kept according to all the rules in standard containers for anatomical samples and were registered with special accuracy. The bodies were placed in formalin. It is obvious that the hospital's staff that did the revision had known about this. All the dead embryos coincided with other records of failed operations and abortions.

Moreover, during 20 years those who had access to the mortuary never asked themselves why all these embryos and stillborns had been kept there. They pretended not to notice those containers. The hospital's staff could not provide any clear explanation. As La Stampa reports, the mortuary could have been a huge illegal organ bank or an archive of delinquent medical experiments.

Three hundred and fifty-one bodies altogether were found there. Some of the embryos were registered as early as in 1980. They had been kept at the hospital for 25 years…Meanwhile, according to the current legislation stillborn babies must be cremated in 10 days if they are not taken away by their parents.

Everyone in Paris is involved into investigation: prosecutors, the police scientific research departments, the ministry of health and the hospital itself. French Prime Minister Dominique de Villepin has commanded an immediate investigation. All the hospitals that have maternity wards and morgues have been checked.

Paris Mayor, Bertrand Delanoe, called the discovery “surreal and illegal.” Ethics Committee was called in order to “evaluate law currently in force and form necessary recommendations in the sphere of ethics, legislation and science.”  “Embryos and stillborns do not have legal status in France. When an embryo dies, it does not mean death because of hospital blunder. It is considered an operation under the necessity, not a murder. In other words, it won’t be easy to solve this case,” Ethics Committee President, Didier Sicard, said. 

French journalists remind of a similar scandal, which took place in Liverpool hospital. Dr. Dick Van Velsen, who had been working there, was suspended from practice for removing baby organs. It has been four years since then but the government does not exclude that the vicious practice is still taking place.