A New Jersey mother filed suit against her former physician, alleging he used his own sperm to impregnate her in an intrauterine insemination procedure performed in 1983.
Nearly 4 decades ago, Bianca Voss sought fertility services at the former Park Avenue offices of Martin Greenberg, MD, in New York City, according to a complaint filed Tuesday in federal court. Voss claims that, without her knowledge or consent, Greenberg — who now resides in Aventura, Florida — used his own sperm to impregnate her, rather than using an anonymous donor from a sperm bank as promised.
The discovery only happened recently, when Voss’s daughter, Roberta, received the results of a 23andMe DNA kit, according to the complaint. The results showed that Greenberg was Roberta’s biological father.
Voss said the discovery is terrible for her daughter and her grandson during a webinar held Tuesday afternoon by Peiffer Wolf Carr Kane & Conway, the law firm representing Voss in her case against Greenberg.
“I hate that they will have to know and live with the fact that their father and grandfather is a medical rapist,” Voss said. “This kind of abuse is so terrible, and I want to help stop it from happening again to other women and other families by sharing my story.”
Roberta also spoke during the webinar. She said she never could have imagined the discovery she made when completing her at-home DNA kit. She added that it is “horrible to look in the mirror and see the person who violated my mother.”
Joe Peiffer, an attorney at the firm that is representing Voss, said during the webinar that the firm is pushing for national legislation to curb fertility misconduct amid an epidemic of such occurrences. He called Greenberg’s alleged conduct “unethical, unacceptable, and illegal.”
Peiffer Wolf Carr Kane & Conway said in a statement announcing the case that the U.S. is in the midst of uncovering thousands of fertility fraud cases in which doctors secretly inserted their own sperm when carrying out fertility treatments.
“Most instances of fertility fraud happened between the late 1970s and 1990,” the firm stated. “This was the period when inseminations became more common, but before at-home DNA testing was on the horizon.”
“Some unscrupulous fertility doctors thought that they could get away with it without being caught,” the firm added. “That is why most child victims who discover fertility fraud are 30 years of age or older today.”
It is not yet clear whether there are other victims of Greenberg’s alleged misconduct.
Roberta said during Tuesday’s webinar that she reached out to Greenberg, but that she had not heard back from him. Voss’s complaint states that Roberta’s reason for reaching out to the physician was because she was aware that his son had unfortunately passed away at an early age, and she wanted to know if she may have inherited a concerning medical condition or passed such a condition on to her own child.
The complaint further states that Greenberg “fraudulently and knowingly concealed from [Voss] what he had done to her for the purpose of escaping responsibility for his misconduct.”
“The allegations made against Dr. Greenberg are for events that allegedly took place approximately four decades ago and are unsubstantiated,” Barry Postman, legal counsel for Greenberg, said in a statement provided to MedPage Today.
Greenberg dedicated his professional life to “helping parents bring children into this world when the thought of having families was only a dream,” said Postman.
“My client has been retired for over 15 years and has no medical record and is not aware of any other document suggesting that he ever was involved in Ms. Voss’ medical care,” he added. “Moreover, it is my understanding that Ms. Voss’ daughter is living a healthy productive life. We look forward to addressing the Plaintiff’s allegations within the confines of the Civil Lawsuit that was filed.”
Last Updated May 25, 2021