Members of Congress and prosecutors in various states have started going after the evidence of possible misbehavior by Planned Parenthood as revealed in a series of undercover videos being released by the Center for Medical Progress.
And the video owners are asking for permission from a California judge who has ordered the evidence collected of the abortion industry’s baby parts trade suppressed for now.
Some argue that no permission is needed, but the CMP has gone to U.S. District Judge William Orrick with the request for clarification of his order, issued July 31 and extended a couple days later, that prevents CMP from releasing undercover videos it made during the National Abortion Federation’s annual meetings.
According to a Courthouse News report, CMP filed a motion asking Orrick to reveal whether the organization can share its information with the Judiciary Committee of the U.S. Senate, which is seeking the details.
Also, the attorney general in Arizona is seeking the details of the sale or purchase of fetal tissue, body parts and even cadavers.
CMP explained, “Materials covered by [Orrick’s suppression order] are responsive to this subpoena. The subpoena indicates that failure to comply could result in legal penalties or contempt.”
The organization, which created a fake company and then sent its undercover investigators into various abortion industry meetings and locations, said it wants to cooperate with the California judge as well as the congressional subpoena.
Orrick has banned CMP from “publishing or otherwise disclosing to any third party any video, audio, photographs, or recordings taken, or any confidential information learned, at any NAF meetings.”
The NAF said CMP investigators committed themselves to confidentiality at the meetings, but CMP says its videos were created in public areas where there is no reasonable expectation of privacy.
The videos have shocked the nation, prompted investigations by multiple states, several congressional committees and others. At least four states have pulled at least some funding from Planned Parenthood already and there is a growing effort in Congress to withhold the more than $500 million in annual federal taxpayer subsidies to the abortion industry behemoth.
The videos, six have been released so far, reveal Planned Parenthood executives callously negotiating payment for the body parts of unborn infants. One talks about the possibility of delivering intact cadavers. Another argues that she doesn’t want to be “low-balled” and also states “I want a Lamborghini,” a $200,000-plus car.
Another California judge also ruled this week StemExpress, a company that worked with Planned Parenthood in its business of salvaging and using body parts of unborn babies, could not gain access to undercover videos that may expose the misdeeds of industry insiders.
In one video already, a former StemExpress worker revealed that often the mothers are not asked for permission, which legally is required, before the bodies of their unborn infants are scavenged.
WND reported legal analysts said even if the courts suppress the evidence, there still are ways for it to become public.
The Heritage Foundation’s Daily Signal published a commentary on the issue by Hans von Spakovsky, an authority on a wide range of issues including civil rights, civil justice, the First Amendment, immigration, the rule of law and government reform, and Elizabeth Slattery, who writes about the rule of law, the role of courts, civil rights and equal protection. They both are with the foundation’s Edwin Meese III Center for Legal and Judicial Studies.
They write:[An] action that one or both of these congressional committees [investigating Planned Parenthood] should consider taking is immediately to request or subpoena all of the remaining videos from CMP that have not yet been released.
The actions of StemExpress and NAF, who are allies of Planned Parenthood, reveal the tactics that these abortion providers and organ buyers intend to use to prevent or delay the release of these videos: seeking out sympathetic judges who will prevent the further release of videos that severely damage the image of the abortion industry and reveal in gory detail their inner workings.
No federal or state judge has the authority to prevent a congressional committee from holding a hearing at which witnesses – like representatives of CMP – testify about their experiences or where the committee presents evidence it has obtained such as the undercover videos, which could also be posted on the committee’s website.
Such action by Congress may be the only way to ensure that litigation tactics do not prevent the public from seeing the rest of the evidence of Planned Parenthood’s possible violations of federal law, and its hideous practices and procedures.
In an interview with CNN, David Daleiden, president of CMP, explained why he thought StemExpress was so concerned about its statements becoming public.
He said StemExpress is trying to suppress “a specific video recording of a meeting with their top leadership where their leadership admitted they sometimes get fully intact fetuses shipped to their lab from the abortion clinics.”
“That,” he said, “could be prima facie evidence of born-alive infants. That’s why they’re trying to suppress that and they’re very scared of it.”
See the interview:
See all the videos: No. 6:
An old story
WND also has reported that as horrific as the videos appear, they should surprise no one, since such practices have been documented for nearly two decades already.
A price list uncovered by a pro-life organization dated June 1998 shows that the price per specimen from a second trimester abortion is $90 fresh and $130 frozen.
Mark Crutcher, whose Life Dynamics organization was a ground-breaker in investigating the abortion behemoth that gets some $500 million annually from U.S. taxpayers, worked on that investigation.
His group reported back in February 2000 how the baby parts market works: “A baby parts ‘wholesaler’ enters into a financial agreement with an abortion clinic in which the wholesaler pays a monthly ‘site fee’ to the clinic. For this payment, the wholesaler is allowed to place a retrieval agent inside the clinic where he or she is given access to the corpses of children killed there and a workspace to harvest their parts.”
He continued: “The buyer – usually a researcher working for a medical school, pharmaceutical company, bio-tech company or government agency – supplies the wholesaler with a list of the baby parts wanted. … when such orders are received … they are faxed to the retrieval agent at the clinic who harvests the requested parts and ships them to the buyer.”
The documentation was provided at that time to Life Dynamics by a worker who left Comprehensive Health for Women, a Planned Parenthood abortion clinic in Overland Park, Kansas.
Among the documents was a “Fee-for-Services” Schedule A, effective June 1998, which outlined a charge of $220 per specimen for first-trimester aspiration abortions and $260 if the baby parts were frozen.
Crutcher’s report, citing Planned Parenthood’s own paperwork, found that one agent sold during February 1996 alone 47 livers, 11 liver fragments, seven brains, 21 eyes, eight thymuses, 23 legs, 14 pancreases, 14 lungs, six arms and one kidney-adrenal gland.
He also sold three orders of blood from the unborn child. The retrieval agent “harvested all of the parts,” the report said, explaining that “in order for the blood of an aborted child to be sold, the dead baby had to be brought to him intact.”
The “specimens,” the report said, would have generated up to about $25,000 in revenue for one month from one retrieval agent at one Planned Parenthood business.
Crutcher reported that the tissue logs reveal that one baby is often chopped up and sold to many buyers.
For example, babies taken from donors 113968 and 114189 were both killed late in their second trimester and cut into nine pieces. By applying the price list, buyers would have been invoiced between $3,510 and $5,070 for these parts, he said.