Monday, December 19, 2011

Man Investigated By Feds For Selling Sperm Online


Your Black News reports:

Trent Arsenault, 36, is being investigated by the federal government for selling his sperm to women he met online.

The San Francisco minister has fathered fourteen children in the last five years by offering it to women through his personal website.

Medical specialists say that it is an unsafe practice, but Arsenault says that he donates it out of a “sense of service” for those women who can’t afford traditional sperm banks:

“I always had known through people praying at church that there’s fertility issues,” Arsenault told The Associated Press on Monday. “I thought it would just be a neat way of service to help the community.”

Last year, The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) sent Arsenault a cease-and-desist letter due to the fact that he is not following the agency’s regulations that require men to be tested for STDs within seven days of giving sperm. 

Arsenault faces a up to a year in prison and a $100,000 fine for violating the FDA’s human cell and tissues regulations, according to the agency’s website. He is resisting the stiff rules because though he gets tested frequently, to do so before every transaction would require that he start charging for his services.

“The regulations may be little bit strict, but I think that’s appropriate,” said Dr. Mitchell Rosen, director of the University of California, San Francisco Fertility Preservation Center.

Though authorities feel that Arsenault is in a dangerous business, he disagrees and says that it’s from the goodness of his…heart:

“This is not a business or a clinic. It’s just people partnering up to have a baby out of compassion,” he said.

Though he apparently hasn’t considered the potential for problematic situations that may arise from such a high frequency of breeding, medical professionals have voiced some of those concerns:

“There’s a danger of accidental incest or inbreeding if you’re the father of 14 children,” said bioethicist Arthur Caplan at University of Pennsylvania. “Nobody should be involved as a sperm donor on that level. It’s not safe.”

As of late last year, Arsenault had made 326 sperm donations to 46 women, a number he says is now much higher. He is allowed to continue to donate sperm while the case is pending --- something that he has every intention of doing:

“It’s not that much more different than a couple knowing each other who want to have a baby,” Arsenault said. “It’s just from me it comes in a cup versus sex.”

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