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Arizona Man Sentenced in Contaminated Body Parts Scheme

On December 11, 2015, Stephen Gore was sentenced in Maricopa County Superior Court, Phoenix, AZ, to a 12 month suspended sentence, 48 months of probation, and was ordered to pay $122,000 restitution. Gore previously pled guilty to State charges related to a scheme in which he obtained donated body parts under false pretenses and provided his unsuspecting customers with contaminated or infectious human tissue. DOT-OIG’s investigation focused on allegations that Gore’s company violated DOT regulations and shipped undeclared infectious human tissue without disclosing the hazards and safety risks associated with the cargo.   

Gore, owned and operated Biological Resource Center of Arizona (BRCAZ), a business that specialized in providing donated deceased human bodies, organs and tissue for medical research to foreign and domestic universities, researchers, and/or medical device companies. He admitted to fraudulently acquiring “willed-to-science” cadaver parts from unwitting and non-consenting donors, for the purposes of dismemberment and sale to a network of medical researchers, medical equipment developers, and pharmaceutical end users. Many body parts were known by Gore to be infectious or diseased before being improperly packaged, transported, and sold to unsuspecting buyers without proper declaration that the shipment contained hazardous biological substances. Additionally, he provided unknowing vendors with donated body parts for unauthorized uses contrary to the donors’ wishes.

DOT-OIG is conducting this investigation with the FBI, the Arizona Attorney General’s Office, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.