Surrogate pretended to gay couple that their baby was born dead
The case of a woman accused of defrauding two gay couples who hired her as a surrogate mother has begun in France.
The surrogate, who is named in the case as Aurore, arranged her first successful contract in 2010 with a male homosexual couple in western France. She agreed to carry a child for them for €15,000.The due date was 21 March, 2011, but when the time came she sent a text message to the couple claiming that the child was stillborn.
The baby’s due date was 21 March 2011, but on that date she sent a text message to the couple claiming that the child was stillborn.
In fact, she had given birth to a healthy baby boy. The child was then sold for around €10,000 to another gay couple living in Luxembourg.
In 2012, she promised a baby to another male gay couple for €15,000.
Again she had a healthy child but told them it died. This time, she sold the baby to a heterosexual couple in northern France.
By the time she was arrested in 2013, she was in contact with another three couples and was charged with fraud and attempted fraud.
Experts said the defendant, who claims she had been raped by her father as a teenager, suffered from “major emotional neglect” and low self-esteem.
“I just wanted to make people happy,” the sobbing 37-year-old defendant told the court in the Loire Valley city of Blois as the trial opened yesterday.
“I would rather have been adopted by parents who would have loved me as I am,” she told the court.
In France, Surrogacy – even if altruistic – has been banned in France since 1994.
Her clients are being tried simultaneously for “incitement to the abandonment of children”.
“We realised it was illegal to use a surrogate mother, but when we went on the internet we saw how easy it was,” one of them told the court.
Altruism was Aurore’s initial reason for becoming a surrogate.
She already had four children in 2008 when she became pregnant with an unwanted fifth child. She offered this baby girl for free to a Parisian couple.
She claims that experience inspired her to earn money as a surrogate mother.
In August 2009, a British couple showed interest but non-professional efforts to inseminate her with the husband’s sperm failed.
Deputy prosecutor Jean Dematteis has recommended that she be sentenced to a year in jail with nine months suspended and that all four couples in the case should be given suspended fines of 2,000 euros.
The fate of the three children – the one she gave away and the two she sold – will be decided pending the outcome of the trial.
The verdict is set for 22 March.
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