Columbia County, GA – An Arizona woman is behind bars in Columbia County, but is facing charges in the Grand Canyon State.
Arizona Investigators said Chalice Zeitner forged a doctor’s note saying she had cancer so she could get a late term abortion.
The procedure was deemed medically necessary, so Zeitner got the state of Arizona to pay for it. The fetus was born alive, but died 20 minutes later. Doctors realized Zeitner was lying when she gave birth to another child a year later.
Back here in the CSRA, a Grovetown woman fears that she may have been scammed by Zeitner.
After hearing about what happened in Arizona, Angela Aduri believes Zeitner was trying to scam her as a surrogate mother.
Sunday was supposed to be a special time when the eggs were going to be retrieved for surrogacy, but instead Aduri is finding out more about Zeitner’s past.
“Our hopes and dreams, we thought were answered,” said Aduri.
The shock is still setting in for Angela Aduri.
The woman she trusted to carry her child was arrested for fraud, forgery and theft.
“Just a total disbelief because we were thinking this person actually was going to be our surrogate carrier,” said Aduri.
Aduri and her husband posted a classified ad in March to find a surrogate mother because she’s unable to have any more children.
That’s when Chalice Zeitner, who at the time used the name “Al Serkez,” came into the picture.
“We met with her a couple times in person, we checked all her information out that she provided with her Georgia driver’s license, medical insurance, name, and address, her references, everything was cleared and verified,” said Aduri.
This surrogate contract was written up through the state of Georgia and signed by both parties. In the contract, a payment plan was outlined. The couple gave Serkez $2,000 at the time of the signing.
“She made us feel very comfortable with her, she was very knowledgeable about many things, especially on the medical side, she told us she had previously done another surrogacy in California,” said Aduri.
Aduri went with Serkez to a local fertility clinic for appointments and medical clearance.
As treatments began, the couple paid Serkez another $2,000, and spent more than $10,000 for medical services.
This week, the embryo was supposed to be implanted.
“We had saved for five years to have a surrogate carrier, so now we are back to stage one again waiting at least two years to save money up,” said Aduri.
Aduri said even though almost $20,000 is gone, she’s relieved this happened before it was too late.
“What extent would she have went to if we would have actually had the embryo implanted in her, would if she tried to blackmail us,” said Aduri.
Aduri said she wants other people to be aware of fraud because it can happen in any situation, even as sensitive as a child.
The couple plans to file a formal complaint with Columbia County authorities and with the state.
We will continue to update you on this story as it develops.