Case Study: China International Transplantation Assistance Center (CITNAC)
On October 16, 2007, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs made a rare, high profile announcement that Hiroyuki Nagase, the CEO of a Japanese-funded company, had been arrested for illegal organ trading.1 The Ministry indicated that, since 2004, the Shenyang-based IPC Information Service Corporation had published online information about organ trafficking under the name of “China International Transplantation Assistance Center.”
The arrest came when the center’s website attracted international attention after China’s organ harvesting program was exposed in 2006. The website contained information about organ transplant prices,2 the availability of kidney transplants from living sources,3 and how the Chinese government facilitated its high transplant volume.4 The website was available in Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Russian, and English. It was subsequently shut down after September 23, 2007:5
The China International Transplantation Network Assistance Center (CITNAC), which focused mainly on foreign patients, was founded in 2003 under the organ transplantation department of the First Affiliated Hospital of China Medical University. We refer to it by the name on its English website.6 While nominally foreign-owned, the center was established within a Chinese hospital. The government apparently used this structure, and the prosecution of a foreign national, to avoid culpability for illicit organ transplants carried out by a Chinese institution.
"Japanese national suspected of illegal operations in China, arrested according to law by Shenyang prosecution office. Sohu News. October 16, 2007."
一日本人涉嫌在华非法经营 被沈阳检方依法批捕 来源：《中国新闻网》 2007年10月16日
"Price list (archived web page). CITNAC. August 29, 2007."
中國國際移植網 - 公開的價錢表
"Online Answers (archived web page). China International Transplantation Network Assistance Center (CITNAC) September 5, 2004."
"Facts of Chinese Transplantation (archived web page). China International Organ Transplant Center. October 23, 2004."
"The Selection of Volunteers (archived web page). CITNAC. August 29, 2007."
"Introduction of China International Transplantation Network Assistance Center. October 22, 2004."