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Florida ‘toxic tush’ surgeon jailed

AFP-JIJI

A transgender U.S. woman who claimed to be a surgeon and reportedly injected adhesives and cement into a woman’s bottom was sentenced Thursday to one year in jail.

Oneal Ron Morris, 32, accepted a plea deal for one count of illegal practice of health care in what became known as the “toxic tush” case, in Miami Gardens, Florida.

Another suit is pending against Morris, involving the death of a woman who was one of her patients.

Prosecutors said Thursday they could not determine exactly what substances Morris injected in women, many of whom were transgender. “I think the media picked up on a key word and ran with it,” her lawyer, Michael Mier, told the court. “There was no evidence of Fix-a-Flat or Super Glue.”

Images that circulated widely in the U.S. press last year showed the woman in question, whose face had been altered and who had a grossly swollen rear end. Photos of Morris, who apparently injected herself with the same toxic mix, as evidenced by her large, misshapen hips, also gained traction in the media.

Morris must surrender to authorities on Jan. 7. For the moment, it is not clear what will happen with the murder charge that Morris faces for the death of a patient in Broward County, north of Miami.

Morris first came to the attention of authorities in May 2010 when a woman who paid $700 for an operation to increase the size of her buttocks ended up in a hospital with pneumonia and grossly deformed hips, among other issues. At the time, doctors said her buttocks had been injected with adhesive, tire sealant, mineral oil and cement.