Four additional women have come forward with claims of nonconsensual surgeries they said were performed on them while in U.S. immigration detention, the Associated Press reports. Practices said to have been carried out by physicians enlisted by Immigration and Customs Enforcement would have resulted in firings in other situations, doctors told the AP. Many of these surgeries were reportedly performed by gynecologist Mahendra Amin, who migrant women held at Georgia’s Irwin County Detention Center said they feared. Amin has told reporters that he’s only performed one or two hysterectomies in the last three years; lawyers for the women told the AP that he’s performed surgery and other gynecological treatments on at least eight women detained since 2017, and that additional women are coming forward. Accounts from the women claim Amin removed one migrant woman’s fallopian tube without her consent, coerced a different woman into a hysterectomy when doctors confirmed to AP that there were other less invasive procedures to be taken, and more. “We look forward to all of the facts coming out, and are confident that once they do, Dr. Amin will be cleared of any wrongdoing,” Amin’s attorney Scott Grubman said in a statement. “Detainees are afforded informed consent, and a medical procedure like a hysterectomy would never be performed against a detainee’s will,” said Ada Rivera, medical director of the ICE Health Service Corps that oversees health care in detention, in a statement to the AP.
Detained women have said Amin was not the only doctor who did surgeries without their OK and jeopardized their ability to have children. An internal watchdog at the Department of Homeland Security launched an investigation of the allegations this week.