New Zealand Prosecutes Chinese Student for Illegally Importing Abortion Drugs

National   |   Steven Ertelt   |   May 15, 2006   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

New Zealand Prosecutes Chinese Student for Illegally Importing Abortion Drugs Email this article
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by Steven Ertelt Editor
May 15, 2006

Wellington, New Zealand ( — A Chinese student who illegally imported abortion drugs is the first person prosecuted for illegal abortions in more than 40 years in New Zealand. Last month, the nation filed charges against the distributors of an illegally imported abortion drug made by a Chinese company.

Zinfeng Zhu (also known as Kelly Zhu), who is 24 and from Auckland, faces seven years in jail after admitting in Auckland District Court this month to bringing the illegal abortion drugs into the country.

She brought the drugs into the country during 2005 and newspaper reports have highlighted several cases of women hemorrhaging and nearly dying from incomplete abortions after using the drugs.

According to the Sunday Star-Times newspaper, Zinfeng faces $40,000 and six months in jail on each of several charges.

Officials discovered Zinfeng after confiscating bags containing the drugs at Auckland International Airport.

Abortions are legal in New Zealand as long as they are done by licensed doctors and approved abortion facilities. A 1961 law prohibits unlicensed abortions and Zinfeng was charged under that law.

The abortion drug RU 486, also know as Mifepristone, is legal in New Zealand and available from abortion practitioners in Auckland and Wellington.

Zinfeng had advertised the abortion drugs, on an Internet web site that was one of the most visited Chinese-language web sites in New Zealand.

Director General of Health Karen Poutasi previously a warning to women to avoid taking the abortion and morning after pills that Zinfeng obtained and disseminated. She said the drugs, which could be tainted, could present dangerous health problems for women.

The drugs are labeled in Chinese and apparently were made in China.