LOS ANGELES Ė The former director of UCLAís Willed Body
Program and an associate were indicted today in connection with a
body-parts-for-profit scheme that they allegedly operated for
The indictment returned this morning and unsealed this afternoon
after the defendants pleaded not guilty, mirrors charges originally
filed against the pair on March 7, 2007. Deputy District Attorney
Marisa Zarate of the Major Fraud Division said the case was taken to
the Los Angeles County Grand Jury after numerous postponements of
the menís preliminary hearing.
The superseding indictment (BA331871) eliminates the need for a
preliminary hearing and moves the case toward trial.
Henry Reid, 58, of Anaheim, the former director, and Ernest
Nelson, 50, of Rancho Cucamonga, each are free on bail. Reidís bond
is $500,000 and Nelsonís $350,000. Since the indictment calls for
bond of $1 million each, bail will be the first matter taken up when
the defendants return to Los Angeles Superior Court Department 103
on May 30 for a pretrial hearing.
Reid and Nelson are charged with one count of conspiracy to
commit grand theft and one count each of grand theft and grand theft
of personal property. The indictment alleged the theft was more than
Nelson additionally was charged with four counts of filing false
California tax returns between 1999 and 2003. At the time of the
alleged crimes, Nelson owned and operated Empire Anatomical Co.,
which sold cadavers and human body parts to private companies for
The men are accused of using bodies donated to the UCLA program
for research for their personal financial gain between May 7, 1999,
and Feb. 26, 2004. Reid allegedly sold human body parts to Nelson
and deposited the funds to his personal bank account. Nelson, in
turn, allegedly sold human cadavers and body parts from the UCLA
program to more than 20 private firms for more than $1 million.