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Fertility doctor used own sperm to father 48 children without parents' knowledge


A fertility doctor used his own sperm to inseminate unwitting women at his clinic and father at least 48 children, it has emerged.

Dr Donald Cline, 80, ran a clinic where he was trusted for decades to help couples conceive.

But many couples have recently discovered their children's true identities.

Many have slammed the doctor and authorities in Indianapolis.

Cline was convicted for lying about dozens of inseminations but Indiana law doesn't specifically prohibit fertility doctors from using their own sperm.

Yet Heather Woock, 33, recently found Cline was her dad.

She told The Atlantic she did some research using Ancestry.com and a DNA test her husband gave her for Christmas.

And her parents, who went to Cline for donor insemination, say they had no idea that he was the person who provided the sperm sample.

 Dr Donald Cline has fathered at least 48 kids by using his own sperm at his fertility clinic

Many of Cline's other children have built a community since learning the news, keeping in touch through a Facebook group.

Jacoba Ballard, 37, was also sickened after the discovery.

She said her mother was "violated".

Cline using his own sperm to inseminate the unwitting patients in the 1970s and 1980s.

He said that their medical records had been destroyed years earlier.

The doctor was investigated for lying about the inseminations and received a one-year suspended sentence in December 2017.

He apologised "for the pain my actions have caused".

But his victims remain furious. Liz White, 66, had gone to Cline's office with her husband in 1981, and found him to be a kind, gentle man.

She said the office was decorated with photos of babies "he'd helped conceive".

Yet her son has since discovered his real father is Cline.

He is one of a large number of other victims, half-siblings, who've grown close over social media.

Ms White told Atlantic: "You have almost this instant bond with people who are not only part of this horrible situation, but you can relate to them on an intimate level in a way you can't with anyone else."

Cline had opened his practice in 1979, when fertility medicine was quite new and sperm banks didn't exist.

But its reported he stopped using his own sperm in 1980 when sperm banks become more common across the US.

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