What would you do for a nicer figure? For one aspiring social media star, that desire caused a tragedy.
A mother-daughter duo in California is facing murder charges relating to a botched attempt to perform Brazilian “butt lift” surgery. The mother, Libby Adame, 51, and her daughter, 23-year-old Alicia Galaz, have no professional medical training, just the promise to perform the operation at a fraction of the cost of what an actual surgeon would charge. The pair are suspected of using social media to advertise this service in major cities like Los Angeles and Las Vegas, but possibly to potential customers outside of the country as well.
Though the arrest came on the 5th of August in Riverside, California, the victim, 26-year-old Karissa Rajpaul, died on October 15th, 2019, after a third “butt lift” operation performed by Adame and Galaz. Police say Rajpaul had moved from South Africa to Los Angeles, California, in order to pursue a career in the adult film industry.
Rajpaul had apparently survived the first two procedures and was doing well enough to opt-in for a third. When the operation went awry and complications arose, Adame and Galaz hastily called 911 before abandoning Rajpaul to her fate. Though medical personnel were able to get Rajpaul to a hospital, she wound up dying later in the day in spite of efforts by real doctors to save her, according to Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) Deputy Chief Alan Hamilton in a statement to KTLA.
“They pass themselves off like they have skill or expertise to do surgeries on the human body and that is not the case. They took people’s cash and we know in a couple of incidents, it resulted in murder. Some of these victims may have not survived these procedures and that’s what we are looking into now,” Hamilton told KTLA.
“These individuals have no medical training, they’re not experienced and they’re putting people’s lives at risk,” Hamilton told KABC-TV in a separate statement.
Investigators believe the women were not honest about their amateur status, and led victims like Rajpaul to believe they were specialists. The pair are believed to have injected Rajpaul with some materials used by legitimate cosmetic physicians, but probably at incorrect dosages, and mixed with dangerous ingredients found at any hardware store.
Dr. A.J. Khalil, a licensed and board-certified surgeon, expressed sadness at this incident to KTLA, and said it, unfortunately, happens too often:
“… It’s unsafe, it’s illegal and these people are going to have to deal with the consequences. They killed a patient… It’s done by individuals who aren’t trained, who are injecting either silicone grade stuff from Home Depot or Lowe’s, any kind of compound.”
The police suspect that there are other, unknown “patients” who did not survive, or were harmed in other ways by the botched operations, and are encouraging any family members to come forward if they or a loved one has potentially been the victim of the two women.
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