Saudi Arabia: Up to Two-year jail, SR1 million in fine or both for sale or brokering human organs

Saudi Arabia: Anyone who involves in paying or accepting or brokering a reward in cash or kind for the organ donation will be awarded a maximum 2-year jail term or SR1 million in fine or both. This is one of the provisions of the Organ Donation Law, approved by the Council of Ministers on Tuesday.

According to the law, it is not permissible to divulge any information related to the body of the donor whether alive or dead except in the legally determined cases or if an order is issued to do so by a judicial authority. The violators of this provision will be punished with a fine not exceeding SR500,000.

The law warned health facilities against violating the ban of using organs, which are removed, for purposes other than what is meant for donation. Such violators will face penalties including imprisonment or a fine or of both. It is also prohibited donation of a human organ if that organ is indispensable for the life of the donor. Article 11 of the law stipulates that the dignity of the donor shall be protected while removing the organ and protect it from mutilation.

The law allows for the transfer, transplant, preservation, and development of organs to preserve human life, protect the rights of those from or to whom human organs are transferred. It also defines the responsibilities of licensed health facilities with regard to organ donation and transplantation and prevents exploitation of the need of the patient or donor or trafficking in human organs.

The draft law was approved by the Shoura Council in September 2019. It is noteworthy that the Council of Senior Scholars and the Council of Islamic Jurisprudence issued a fatwa (religious edict) 22 years ago permitting the donation of organs of the deceased.


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