A surrogate mother in California who became pregnant with twins and learned that one of the babies was her biological son is suing, alleging that the surrogacy agency wanted her to pay them to get her son back.
According to the Daily Mail, Omega Family Global matched Jessica Allen, 31, with a childless Chinese couple (called the Lius in the article) and Allen underwent in vitro fertilization in April 2016. A frozen embryo from the couple was implanted into Allen, who successfully became pregnant.
It wasn’t until a month after giving birth in December 2016 that she found out that one of the twin boys belonged to her and her husband. The Mail reported that Allen was unaware she suffered from superfetation.
MedicineNet describes superfetation as the following: “An extremely rare situation in which a pregnant woman becomes pregnant a second time with another (younger) fetus. Superfetation is characterized by the fertilization and the implantation of a second oocyte in a uterus already containing the product of a previous conception.”
The babies were reportedly delivered via C-section and taken away before Allen could see them. She claims she asked to see them the following day but a coordinator for the surrogacy agency informed her that she couldn’t see or hold the newborns.
“Jessica was devastated and was only permitted to see a cell phone photograph of the two children, taken by the intended mother, which she was hesitant to show Jessica,” the lawsuit states.
Upon viewing the photograph, Allen expressed concern that the twins looked nothing alike. However, the coordinator, Tracy Amato, allegedly dismissed her concerns and again rebuffed Allen’s request to see the babies in person.
“One, his skin tone was much fairer than the other. One looked full Chinese, the other didn’t look full Chinese,” Allen told People in November 2017. “It was very clear that they were not identical…but I didn’t ask questions.”
The lawsuit alleged that Amato had the babies vaccinated and circumcised and filed pre-birth legal documents which designated the Lius as the boys’ legal parents.
It was a month later, in January 2017, when Mrs. Liu sent Allen a picture of the boy which made it abundantly clear that the babies weren’t identical twins. Jessica is white and her husband, Wardell Jasper, 34, is black.
The Lius had a DNA test done on both boys and learned that one of them wasn’t theirs. The couple, who “wanted nothing to do with a biracial baby” sent him back to the surrogacy agency, according to the lawsuit.
Allen told People that the couple initially wanted $22,000 to give baby Malachi to them as the agency deceived them into thinking that she was going to sue them. Additionally, Amato allegedly demanded that Allen and her husband pay the agency $9,200 for expenses related to Malachi’s care.
The lawsuit indicates that the couple was also informed they would have to pay an additional $3,000 to amend Malachi’s birth certificate.
“We tried to get him on numerous occasions, but one excuse they gave us was the intended parents didn’t want to sign over the power of attorney, so we didn’t get him,” the mother told the magazine. “We got another call and we were supposed to get him, then we didn’t because they were thinking about giving him up for adoption.”
After lawyers became involved, the agency reportedly handed over the baby in a Starbucks parking lot on February 5. However, the couple alleged the infant had diaper rash and breathing problems when they finally got him.
While Malachi is now with his biological parents, the Daily Mail reports that the California couple is suing the surrogacy agency — accusing the agency of several crimes, including child abduction and abuse, battery, extortion, and conspiracy.
The lawsuit concludes, “They have suffered immense and irreparable loss as to what can never be regained, i.e. being able to bond with their baby during the first two months of his life, holding him, watching him sleep, putting him to bed, feeding him, playing with him, getting to know him—all of this was stolen from Jessica and Wardell, all of this they can never get back.’
[Featured image: Jessica Allen, Malachi/Facebook]