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Published on December 29th, 2008 | by Jennifer Lance

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Lipo Biodiesel Doctor Violated CA Law and Fled the Country

Dr. Bittner flees the country for violating state law making biodiesel from lipo fat[social_buttons]

Last week, Nick told you about the plastic surgeon who discovered he could use the fat from liposuctions to fuel his two SUVs.  He’s not the first person to use human fat for biodiesel, as Team Earthrace used the captain’s liposuctioned fat to beat the world record for circumventing the Earth powered by biodiesel.

Now, the Beverly Hills plastic surgeon Craig Alan Bittner is being investigated by the California’s public health department for violating state law that  forbids the use of human medical waste to power vehicles, which I think is a strange law to be on the books.

Powering SUVs with human fat is just the tip of the iceberg for the plastic surgeon’s legal troubles.  Dr. Bittner has been accused by three of his patients of removing more fat than was necessary during liposuction that led to the patients’ disfigurement.  Did he do so to make more biodiesel for his SUVs? In addition, lawsuits have been filed alleging that his assistant and girlfriend performed surgeries without a medical license.  The state medical board has not made any official statements on the case.

Dr. Bittner is suspected to have fled the country to do volunteer work in South America. On his website, he writes:

My journey has been an amazing one. I began my medical career volunteering in a rural clinic outside Bogata, Columbia that did not have enough equipment and was cursed with only sporadic electricity.After 10 years in practice, I have treated over 40,000 patients, including almost 7000 liposculpture patients. I am proud to be able to tell you that the record of my liposculpture practice has been impeccable; not one single serious complication or infection. Liposculpture is truly my passion and I have been extremely fortunate, however after 10 years of private practice, I am going back to South America to volunteer with a small clinic that is very similar to where my medical career began decades ago, where I can help those most in need.

I wonder if he is volunteering at a clinic to make biodiesel from lipo fat in the Southern Hemisphere?  Are there laws down there about using human fat to power vehicles?

Image: dralanbittner.com




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About the Author

Jennifer lives on 160 acres off-the-grid in a home built with her own two hands (and several more skilled pairs of hands) from forest fire salvaged timber. Her home is powered by a micro-hydro turbine, and she has been a vegetarian for 21 years. Jennifer graduated from Humboldt State University with a degree in art education and has been teaching art to children for over 16 years. She also spent five years teaching in a one-room schoolhouse before becoming the mother of two beautiful children. Jennifer has a Master's Degree in Early Childhood Education and is currently teaching preschool, as well as k-8 art. She enjoys writing, gardening, hiking, practicing yoga, and raising four akitas. Jennifer is the founder and editor of Eco Child's Play (http://ecochildsplay.com) "I’ve always been concerned about the earth and our impact upon it. Now that I have children, I feel compelled to raise them with green values. From organic gardening to alternative energy, my family tries to leave a small carbon footprint." Please visit my other blog: http://reallynatural.com



  • Doug

    I find it odd that you think this is a weird law. Just like the article alleges, what would stop people from “over-harvesting” human fat? Soon you would hear stories of countries like Zimbabwe selling people to fuel factories. Personally there is enough to worry about without adding body harvesting to the mix.

  • Doug

    I find it odd that you think this is a weird law. Just like the article alleges, what would stop people from “over-harvesting” human fat? Soon you would hear stories of countries like Zimbabwe selling people to fuel factories. Personally there is enough to worry about without adding body harvesting to the mix.

  • Doug

    I find it odd that you think this is a weird law. Just like the article alleges, what would stop people from “over-harvesting” human fat? Soon you would hear stories of countries like Zimbabwe selling people to fuel factories. Personally there is enough to worry about without adding body harvesting to the mix.

  • http://ecochildsplay.com Jennifer Lance

    Doug, I guess I just think it is weird a politician would have the foresight to think of this law. What about normal human medical waste though? Why not use it for fuel? Why can’t it be collected from hospitals? I don’t know if there are any health risks involved, but I believe most doctors are ethical and would not overharvest.

  • http://ecochildsplay.com Jennifer Lance

    Doug, I guess I just think it is weird a politician would have the foresight to think of this law. What about normal human medical waste though? Why not use it for fuel? Why can’t it be collected from hospitals? I don’t know if there are any health risks involved, but I believe most doctors are ethical and would not overharvest.

  • Martin K.

    The only ridiculous thing about this story is that there is a law against using human waste for fuel. Lots of human tissue can be sold at a profit, even for transplants. Anybody willing to risk a patient’s health for personal gain won’t care two straws about the law. It’s not like stealing organs or tissue without permission is legal. These people wanted to get rid of their fat and he put it to good use. End of story.

  • Martin K.

    The only ridiculous thing about this story is that there is a law against using human waste for fuel. Lots of human tissue can be sold at a profit, even for transplants. Anybody willing to risk a patient’s health for personal gain won’t care two straws about the law. It’s not like stealing organs or tissue without permission is legal. These people wanted to get rid of their fat and he put it to good use. End of story.

  • Martin K.

    The only ridiculous thing about this story is that there is a law against using human waste for fuel. Lots of human tissue can be sold at a profit, even for transplants. Anybody willing to risk a patient’s health for personal gain won’t care two straws about the law. It’s not like stealing organs or tissue without permission is legal. These people wanted to get rid of their fat and he put it to good use. End of story.

  • Doug

    @Martin and Jennifer,

    I doubt it was foresight Jennifer, I am sure they had a previous issue. As I said the problem is not the use of the medical waste it is the HUGE door that is opened for illegally obtained fat. Martin your comment is exactly why they can not legalize the use of human waste. Seriously do you really want to open up another angle for these crooks? There is just no way to make this work safely.

  • Doug

    @Martin and Jennifer,

    I doubt it was foresight Jennifer, I am sure they had a previous issue. As I said the problem is not the use of the medical waste it is the HUGE door that is opened for illegally obtained fat. Martin your comment is exactly why they can not legalize the use of human waste. Seriously do you really want to open up another angle for these crooks? There is just no way to make this work safely.

  • Doug

    @Martin and Jennifer,

    I doubt it was foresight Jennifer, I am sure they had a previous issue. As I said the problem is not the use of the medical waste it is the HUGE door that is opened for illegally obtained fat. Martin your comment is exactly why they can not legalize the use of human waste. Seriously do you really want to open up another angle for these crooks? There is just no way to make this work safely.

  • Carlos

    Is this a real history?

    Amazing World ;-P

  • Carlos

    Is this a real history?

    Amazing World ;-P

  • Carlos

    Is this a real history?

    Amazing World ;-P

  • joanne

    If they could sell it and use it for cars alone then the prices of the procedure would drop and more people would be having it done. Think about all the overweight people who could have this done! ITS just FAT – get over it! get rid of that stupid law.

  • joanne

    If they could sell it and use it for cars alone then the prices of the procedure would drop and more people would be having it done. Think about all the overweight people who could have this done! ITS just FAT – get over it! get rid of that stupid law.

  • Doug

    What if the fat is force removed? What if the find shops of people being melted down for diesel? Sure these are worst case scenarios, but that is what the law is designed to prevent. Their is already a huge and growing problem with organ thieves. This would just make the whole body profitable. So way to let your “green dream” trump reality. Stopping drinking the rainbow colored kool-aid and apply some common sense.

  • Doug

    What if the fat is force removed? What if the find shops of people being melted down for diesel? Sure these are worst case scenarios, but that is what the law is designed to prevent. Their is already a huge and growing problem with organ thieves. This would just make the whole body profitable. So way to let your “green dream” trump reality. Stopping drinking the rainbow colored kool-aid and apply some common sense.

  • Doug

    What if the fat is force removed? What if the find shops of people being melted down for diesel? Sure these are worst case scenarios, but that is what the law is designed to prevent. Their is already a huge and growing problem with organ thieves. This would just make the whole body profitable. So way to let your “green dream” trump reality. Stopping drinking the rainbow colored kool-aid and apply some common sense.

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