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Somoza said to have diverted millions in U.S. foreign aid dollars to build and equip blood harvesting centers.

December 29, 2012

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In the pre-revolutionary Nicaragua of the 1960s, it has been charged, millions of dollars in U.S. foreign aid funds were diverted to construct and equip blood harvesting centers in several locations around the country. When completed they mysteriously became the private property of Centro Americana de Plasmapheresis, S.A., a Nicaraguan corporation at least partially owned by then President Anastasio Somoza.

nicaragua-burningBetween 1975, when it was licensed to collect blood for export to the United States by the U.S. Bureau of Biologics, and 1978, when it was burned to the ground by Sandinista revolutionaries, untold numbers of glass and plastic containers filled with the blood and plasma of Nicaraguan peasants found their way into the pipeline that fed the U.S. blood industry, otherwise known throughout Latin America as la sanguijuela (the bloodsucker).

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