Japanese father granted sole custody of 13 surrogate children in Thailand

Japanese father granted sole custody of 13 surrogate children in Thailand

The babies were first discovered by police in 2014 (Stock image)

Tuesday, February 20, 2018

A Japanese man who is the father of 13 surrogate children has been named their legal parent and only guardian by a court in Thailand.

Police first discovered the 13 babies in 2014 who had been born by nine surrogate mothers. They had been created using donor eggs and the sperm of the Japanese man.

This resulted in the babies being taken into care and since 2015 the father has been attempting to gain custody, according to Reuters.

The court said the man did not have links to human trafficking and part of the reason he has been given custody is due to his financial position.

The man is the "heir and president of a well-known company listed in a stock exchange in Japan, owner and shareholder in many companies," according to a court statement.

His lawyer, Kong Suriyamonthon, said his reason for having so many children is for "personal and business reasons. He was born in a big family, so he wants his children to grow up together.”

Little information has been given about the father, however it is claimed he will take the children to Japan where he has previously brought up other surrogate children.

He has reportedly also raised surrogate children in Cambodia.

When the babies were found in 2014, investigators discovered a number of unregulated surrogacy businesses in the country. However the case, along with others, has prompted the government to make commercial surrogacy illegal.