WHAT’S BEING CLAIMED:
- A 30-year-old Japanese woman gave up her baby after learning her sperm donor had lied about his background.
- The donor claimed he was a single Japanese national who graduated from Kyoto University.
- The woman discovered that the donor was actually Chinese, married and went to a different university.
A Japanese woman is suing the biological father of her second child for 330 million yen ($2.86 million) after learning that he’d lied about his identity.
The Tokyo resident thought she’d found a successful Japanese man with a Kyoto University education. She had sex with him 10 times in an effort to get pregnant, according to Japanese media. The 30-year-old woman remains unidentified in local reports.
The woman had previously had one child with her current husband. When she learned her husband carried a hereditary disorder that could be passed to his offspring, she decided to conceive with a sperm donor. She sought the help of social media to find the perfect candidate.
The efforts paid off in July 2019. But soon after getting pregnant by the donor, she learned that the biological father of her unborn child has lied about his background. He is, in fact, a married Chinese man who did not attend the prestigious university.
The woman decided to put her baby up for adoption as it was already too late to abort the pregnancy. She’s now suing for fraud, citing “emotional distress” caused by his lies.
Japan’s sperm donation industry is largely unregulated, according to a Vice News investigation. Commercial artificial insemination is scarce, and it’s limited only to heterosexual married couples. The situation has led many parents to take their efforts online and into their own hands.
“In Japan, there is no public system or legal system for sperm donation,” the woman’s lawyer said during a press conference Tuesday. His client has relayed that the ordeal has caused her physical and emotional distress, due in part to the backlash prompted by her decision to give up the child.
But Mizuho Sasaki, a child welfare worker in Japan, called the woman “shallow,” in a statement to Vice, for “treat[ing] the child like an object.”
Sasaki added, “But I think it’s better to leave the kid with someone who can be a good foster parent.”