Brown Ordered to Testify in UCI Willed-Body Program Scandal
In the latest chapter of the ongoing UCI body-donation program saga, a Superior Court judge yesterday ordered the "elusive" former director of the program, Christopher Brown, to give a sworn deposition in a case against UCI, the Orange County Register reports. His testimony could "prove key" to families who donated relatives' bodies to the school and later found out that body parts were sold to research companies. The Orange County District Attorney's Office is continuing to investigate allegations that Brown sold, lost or gave bodies that had been donated to the program to the wrong families. No charges have been filed yet. Mary Luetto Nichols, attorney for the family of an individual whose remains were returned, said, "If anybody is going to be able to sort out the people, and the bodies, and the ashes, it would be him." The judge also "slapped" Brown with a $700 sanction for refusing to answer attorneys' questions in November. Brown maintained that answering the questions -- even giving his name -- would incriminate him. Brown "surprised" attorneys by appearing at a hearing Wednesday about his testimony because he had been unreachable since moving from the area (Heisel, Orange County Register, 2/8).