FREMONT (CBS 5) — The Food and Drug Administration is trying to crack down on a Fremont sperm donor who has fathered more than a dozen children.

Trent Arsenault has fathered 14 children as a sperm donor. Arsenault said he is just helping people who cannot have a baby on their own.

“It is helping people in need,” Arsenault said. “I don’t make any money, I don’t charge people anything. And it is just helping childless couples have children.”

But the FDA does not see it that way. In a legal dispute that has gone on for more than a year, the agency said Arsenault must cease his donations because he is violating the law.

An excerpt of the letter said, “Your firm or establishment located in Fremont recovers and distributes semen and therefore is a manufacturer of human cells…”

Arsenault said the only thing he is doing is entering into mutually desired partnerships with childless couples. So he is a bit puzzled as to why the FDA is holding him to the same standards to which it holds for-profit sperm banks.

“I think inspectors typically go to clinics and hospitals and that sort of thing. So it was probably unusual for them to come to a house,” he said.

Arsenault said he started donating sperm in 2004 when he read about a neighborhood teacher who wanted to have a baby.

He attended the United States Naval Academy and works in Silicon Valley as a computer security expert.

The Fremont man has now set up a website with all of his relevant personal and medical history, saying he had about 20,000 email inquires in all.

“Yeah I would like to continue helping the families in the community who have asked me to be their donor,” Arsenault said.

Arsenault continues to donate while he awaits a formal hearing by the FDA.

(Copyright 2011 by CBS San Francisco. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

Comments (30)
  1. ml66uk says:

    Why are the FDA getting involved in this? If it’s legal to have unprotected sex with a stranger, then how can it be illegal for a donor to be tested for STI’s, and allow informed consenting adult women to inseminate themselves using his semen?

  2. Bill Voelker says:

    How is he “donating” his sperm? With a turkey baster?

    1. ml66uk says:

      It looks like he either gives it them in a plastic cup or ships it to them. The insemination would normally be performed using a plastic syringe or a softcup.

      If he was having unprotected sex with the recipients, there wouldn’t be any problems, even though it’s a lot more dangerous. It baffles me that the FDA (that’s the “Food and Drug” Administration) think this has anything to do with them.

  3. Peggy says:

    does he not understand that the more children he produces the higher chances of the offspring meeting and having
    children of their own that would be to closely related. I believe men are limited to ONLY seven offspring from sperm donations.

    1. ml66uk says:

      There are no such limits in the USA. The ASRM has a recommendation of no more than 25 children per population centre of 850,000, but since donors can donate at multiple sperm banks, and only about 40% of births are reported anyway, this is almost impossible to enforce.

      There are several clinic donors with over 100 genetic children. Trent’s children will at least be able to find each other, which is more than can be said for the children of most US clinic donors.

    2. Ivy says:

      this is a ridiculous reason to intervene. he’s a known donor, and the offspring can be told about their origins and can ask potential mates about theirs.

  4. Darwin says:

    Well at least the women met him to see how creepy looking the off-spring will be.

  5. Jennifer says:

    Ewwwww. Adoption people!

    1. Ivy says:

      why can’t you let others make their own choices?

  6. Duped SpermDonors Wife says:

    The FDA specifically informed me in 2002 that they had no interest in regulating sperm donation by known parties. The only interest they have is in stopping HIV transmission with sperm through anonymous donors to cryobanks. YOU see, if a women knows her donor and waives her consent to having HIV tests done she can still impregnate herself with any suspect sperm she procures. She does it at her own risk, though. . FDA also didn’t think spouses needed to give consent to gamete transactions by their partners either. Wait that was just men. Men can do what they want with their sperm. But women need the consent of their male boyfriends or their husbands. Wives are just collateral damage to another woman’s right to procreate by any resourceful , conniving, immoral means.

  7. PrudentPassion says:

    Ok. So he goes to a bar and impregnates every woman in there… Let’s say it adds up to 28… I don’t think FDA would even get involved. Seriously? WHY are they wasting tax dollars on this? Buyer, Beware!

  8. Chaka Chuka says:

    Trent Arsenault, my kind of stud.

  9. Om says:

    Most IVF clinics perform HIV tests, whether or not it was donated

  10. Harley says:

    So you’re telling me this guy openly provides his medical records and any other information requested to consenting women, which is a helluva lot more than a one night stand usually does, and the FDA has a problem with this? I’m sorry, but would they rather the guy just goes out and wrecklessly knocks boots with countless women, thus raising the risk of getting/transmitting diseases and impregnating women who don’t want/didn’t plan on children?

  11. Pauli Gela says:

    Against the law? This from a lawless government. How ridiculous.

  12. MK says:

    Keep up the good work Trent. You’re a hero to some people.

  13. duped spermdonor says:

    Side note , I also know of a 2008 CA. paternity case where a known sperm donor to a childless couple contributed his sperm to a sperm bank to show intent of parties. Eight years after the birth, the couple went before a CA. judge committing perjury and frauds to demand blood tests on the sperm donor to hold him accountable as a bio parent and for child support because the presumed legal father who financially supported his wife’s decision to use a sperm donor wanted out of the arrangement. The Judge decided a child has the right to know who his real daddy was even though the law said otherwise. But the judge thought the existing paternity laws of CA. were “ridiculous” and recklessly ignored the law. So beware sperm donors out there doing good deeds. The law doesn’t actually protect you from activist judges who can do whatever they think feels right.. for the child’s sake.

  14. duped spermdonor says:

    Oh, I forgot to add… the duped sperm donor case cited above was in ALAMEDA county !

    tick-tock-tick tock

  15. Kenneth says:

    Since when is the government able to tell us what an were our sperm is able to go ? The U.S. Government is only looking out for the wealth of the rich and not the middle class or even the poor anymore … They are more worried about Petrol and ww3…

  16. JW says:

    We should ban this stuff like they do in the UK.

    1. ml66uk says:

      It’s not banned in the UK. Why on earth should it be banned anyway though? Who are you to tell a donor and a recipient they shouldn’t have children? Who else do you want to stop having children?

  17. J.I. Galo says:


    I’ve been ‘donating’ to beautiful women all my life.

    You mean I may be a criminal?

  18. ME says:


    1. ml66uk says:

      Since he already has 14 people, obviously a lot more people than you’d think.

      Who are you to decide who should want his DNA anyway – shouldn’t that be up to the recipients?

  19. JED says:

    He just like whacking his wand away from home plus getting newer free girlie magazines.

  20. BuyerBeware says:

    I have known sperm donor Trent Arsenault for a long time and I don’t understand why anyone would want his sperm. Trent is misleading everyone and in my opinion a mentally unstable person. Trent has grotesque pornographic photos of himself on a website called The MEDIA, anyone considering using Trent’s sperm, anyone who has used Trent’s sperm and Trent’s associates need to view these photos to see who Trent really is. Among the 1000’s of photos, you will see Trent masturbating in a bathroom on a commercial airliner and showing himself nude in public. Look at the photos, read the captions and judge for yourself. After viewing the photos, would you let this person anywhere near your children? Would you want this person “fathering” your children? Trent’s donor website is full of half truths. For example, Trent wants you to believe he was an honorable member of the Naval Academy. Trent doesn’t want you to know that he did not even make it one semester before being discharged from the Naval Academy. In fact, Trent does not even have a college degree. I feel sorry for the parents duped by Trent and even more sorry for the children “fathered” by Trent. Wait until they are old enough to view the photos of their “father” and come to the same opinion that I have, that they are the offspring of a deranged individual.

  21. BuyerBeware says:

    The attorneys who represent Trent for free and media really need to know who Trent is. You will be embarrassed once you figure out who Trent really is. Trent is a sinking ship that you don’t want to be associated with. In this Sandusky media era anyone associating with Trent ought to question themselves. Go look at all his sick nude photos that he takes of himself in public. Are children present? The photos are certainly taken in public places where children could be. Just go to and you will see what I am talking about. BEWARE!!!!!! BEWARE!!!!!