PALISADES, N.Y.(CBSNewYork) — A Rockland County woman tracing her DNA online made a shocking discovery. Back in the 1980s her mother conceived her through what she thought was an anonymous sperm donor.
But she now says her father is the fertility doctor who treated her mom, and is accusing him of fertility fraud, CBS2’s Lisa Rozner reported Tuesday.
Bianca Voss, of Clifton, New Jersey, raised her daughter, Roberta, only knowing her father was an anonymous sperm donor that was allegedly selected by her fertility specialist, Dr. Martin Greenberg.
“He did say, ‘Do you mind if the donor was Jewish?’ And I said no. I kind of thought it might be a medical student from the hospital, but that was it,” Voss said.
Voss says at the time the doctor asked if she had a preference for ethnicity or religion. He charged a $100 fee to procure the sperm.
But recently, daughter Roberta, now of Palisades, New York, learned from the DNA ancestry website 23AndMe that her father is Dr. Greenberg, himself.
Back in 1983, Greenberg had a practice in an Upper East Side building. Today, he lives in Aventura, Florida, outside Miami.
“It’s horrifying to look in the mirror and see the person who violated my mother, and I see his face every time I look in the mirror. And I’m in turmoil about who I am,” Roberta Voss said.
“I hate that they will have to know and live with the fact that their father and grandfather is a medical rapist,” Bianca Voss added.
Rozner tried reaching Dr. Greenberg, but was hung up on. She left multiple voicemails.
The Voss family is suing him in federal court, accusing Greenberg of battery, fraud, negligence and emotional distress, among other things.
Records show that around 2010 New York state sanctioned him for, “dishonorable, unethical, [and] unprofessional conduct.”
“This is not something in our experience that a doctor does just once,” attorney Joseph Peiffer said.
Peiffer said because DNA was not as widely available decades ago, there are dozens of cases like this involving other doctors from the 1980s and ’90s.
Today, because science has advanced, fertility experts say it’s less likely.
“Even though identifying info is not exchanged, the intended parents know who the donor is. They get photographs. They get medical history,” said Parham Zar, founder of the Egg Donor & Surrogacy Institute.
In this case, it’s not clear if Greenberg used his sperm for other patients’ pregnancies.
The Voss family hopes by sharing their story, others will try to find out.
The family’s attorneys said there is no federal law that prohibits fertility fraud. Some states have criminalized the act of a doctor using his sperm to impregnate patients without consent.