Women in the United States in search of curves that rival celebrities like Kim Kardashian and Jennifer Lopez, are increasingly turning to the black market for plastic surgery, a trend that can have deadly consequences.
During a preliminary court hearing in a Mississippi case on Monday, prosecutors said 37-year-old Karima Gordon died in March after being injected in the buttocks with a silicon-like substance. Morris Garner, a 52-year-old transgender man, who also uses the name Tracey Lynn Garner, is facing murder charges in the case.
According to published reports, authorities say Gordon wanted to be a model and found Garner through the Internet.
Attorney General’s Office Investigator Lee McDivitt testified on Monday that the Georgia medical examiner who performed an autopsy on Gordon, said she died from an embolism when the injected foreign substance blocked the flow of blood to her arteries.
“Brain surgery would probably be a less invasive surgery than having to remove the buttocks of this victim all the way down to the meat and bone to get all of this substance out of her,” testified McDivitt.
Earlier this month, 29-year-old Barbara Nieto, a New York spa owner, pled guilty to unauthorized practice of profession and was sentenced to two years in prison and fined for illegally performing liposuction and administering butt-lifting injections to a woman who nearly died of septic poisoning.
Another black market plastic surgery made headlines in April. Miami police told local media 30-year-old Oneal Ron Morris performed buttocks injections on a number of patients using a mixture of cement, mineral oil, and Fix-a-Flat tire sealant. She then sealed the incisions with super glue, police said.
Oneal was arrested after two women who had the procedure ended up sick and deformed. Since then, several more alleged victims came forward to share their stories.
Some of the victims in these black market plastic surgery cases didn’t live long enough to share their stories. In early 2011, a 20-year-old British woman traveled to a U.S. hotel room for buttocks implants and later died.
A similar case occurred in Las Vegas where a husband and wife were sentenced to up to eight years in prison for leaving a woman to die after botching her buttocks enhancement procedure in the back room of a tile store.