'Genius' Sperm Donor, Who's Schizophrenic, Turns Self In

Christian Aggeles, who looked good on paper, has fathered more than 36 children worldwide
By Elizabeth Armstrong Moore,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 2, 2016 7:20 AM CDT
'Genius' Sperm Donor, Who's Schizophrenic, Turns Self In
This Friday, April 17, 2015 photo shows the website of Xytex Cryo International sperm bank in Atlanta.   (AP Photo/David Goldman)

How often are sperm donors vetted, and how often do they get away with enhancing their positive traits? It's a question at the heart of ongoing lawsuits involving James Christian (Chris) Aggeles, who donated his sperm to Georgia-based Xytex Corp. years ago and fathered 36 children between 2000 and 2014. He billed himself as a highly intelligent donor working toward a PhD in neuroscience engineering, but he was actually a college dropout diagnosed with schizophrenia and narcissistic personality disorder who has spent time behind bars for burglary, reports the CBC. Aggeles appeared at a police station in Georgia's Athens-Clarke County last week to turn himself in, and police say he admitted lying.

But how much Xytex knew about his history—or whether the company has or is going to file a report against him—remains unclear. So far, he has not been charged with any crimes. Also unclear is whether a disease as genetically complex as schizophrenia will be passed down to his progeny, but it's an issue that's likely not limited to Aggeles. The Guardian reports that it's easier than ever for donor-conceived children to find a genetic family member, with the US Donor Sibling Registry helping to connect more than 10,900 people with their half-siblings or donors. Since donating his sperm, Aggeles has received mental health treatment, earned a degree in cognitive science, and is working toward a master's in artificial intelligence. (Parents are calling for more oversight of the sperm bank industry.)

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