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UK: Sperm donor fathered 15 children for lesbian mothers without telling them he had an inheritable ‘low-IQ’ illness

James MacDougall, 37, fathered children to lesbian women through donations via social media despite knowing that he suffered from Fragile X syndrome, a hereditary disease associated with low IQ and mental development delay, and is incurable.

A sperm donor who offered his services online and fathered 15 children never told their mothers that he had an inheritable ‘low IQ’ condition that causes developmental disabilities. 

James MacDougall, 37, fathered children to lesbian women through donations via social media despite knowing that he suffered from Fragile X syndrome, a hereditary disease associated with low IQ and mental development delay, and is incurable.

MacDougall, who advertised on social media as a private sperm donor for lesbian women did not sign up with donor clinics given his condition. He signed an agreement with the mothers, stating that he suffered from fragile X syndrome, but did not mention what it is. Most of the mothers who looked up to MacDougall for sperm did not read the document in totality.

The donor also stated in his document that he did not want any contact with ‘his’ children once they were born. However, he demanded access to his offsprings from four women to whom he donated his sperm. MacDougall went to the court demanding the same, while three mothers opposed this proposition. The case was heard by Justice Lieven who stripped the donor from taking any parental responsibility.

Court slams MacDougall for keeping the mothers in dark about his hereditary disease, says he should be stopped from being a sperm donor

In the order, MacDougall was called out publically for not revealing his mental development condition – the X syndrome which could be inherited. He was named as a warning to other women seeking to become mothers. With the fragile X syndrome, James MacDougall had already fathered more than 15 kids to lesbian couples via private sperm donation.

Justice Lieven commented in her order, “The usual approach of anonymity in the Family Courts should not be used as a way for parents to behave in an unacceptable manner and then hide behind the cloak of anonymity.”

The judge also maintained that MacDougall should be named to stop other women from using him as a sperm donor. One of his clients, a 25-year-old woman, conceived a girl in October 2018 and another one was born in 2020. He handed her a three-page document in highly legalistic language which on page 3 had a mention of the Fragile X syndrome without providing any explanation.

MacDougall used to visit his baby daughter often, and during the lockdown in 2020, even started living with the mother. The lady became pregnant with a second child but asked MacDougall to leave in June 2020. During the legal battle in the court, she claimed that the donor made sexual advances on her and showered with the toddler which she found problematic.

MacDougal was arrested in June 2020 after he left bruises on the mother’s neck and back in an attack. The mother noted that while the daughter is now three-years-old, she is not yet verbal and her behaviour is challenging. In another such case, MacDougall is also the sperm donor father of another toddler boy while he got into a relationship with his mother just months before.

MacDougall removed from Facebook group following the court order

After the ruling, Anthony Fletcher, who manages a number of sperm donor Facebook groups of which MacDougall was part, has removed him from all the groups. However, the septuagenarian parents of the controversial donor have defended him saying that he suffered from autism.

Speaking to MailOnline, the donor’s mother said, “This court case has broken his heart, and ours. When he first told me he had become a dad two to three years ago, he showed me a picture and said – this baby was mine.”

“He didn’t want any money, he just wanted to help women, who couldn’t conceive naturally, have babies. It was his gift to them and he never did anything illegal, as far as we are concerned,” she asserted.

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OpIndia Staff
OpIndia Staffhttps://www.opindia.com
Staff reporter at OpIndia

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