A Chinese court on Monday sentenced He Jiankui, the researcher who shocked the global scientific community when he claimed he had created the first genetically modified babies, with three years in prison for committing “unlawful medical practices”.
In a surprise announcement from a trial that was closed to the public, a court in the southern city of Shenzhen found the scientist guilty of forging approval documents from ethics review boards to recruit couples in which the man had HIV and the woman not, Central China Television reported.
He had said he was trying to prevent HIV infections in newborns, but state media on Monday said he misled medical subjects and authorities as well.
He sent the scientific world into turmoil last year when he announced at a conference in Hong Kong that he had given birth to the first genetically modified babies – twin girls.
On Monday, China’s state-run media said his work had resulted in a third genetically modified baby not previously discovered.
He was found guilty and also fined $ 430,000, according to Xinhua, China’s official news agency.