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Planned Parenthood Videos Lead to Felony Charges Against Activists

Image: Planned Parenthood Videos Lead to Felony Charges Against Activists

Left: In this April 29, 2016, file photo, David Robert Daleiden leaves a courtroom after a hearing in Houston. Right: In this Feb. 3, 2016, file photo, Sandra Merritt leaves the courtroom after turning herself in to authorities and bonding out in Houston. (AP Photos/Pat Sullivan, File)

By    |   Thursday, 30 Mar 2017 06:27 AM

Planned Parenthood videos made undercover in an attempt to connect its officials with allegedly selling fetal tissue has landed two anti-abortion activists in hot water Tuesday with California prosecutors.

David Daleiden and Sandra Merritt were charged with 15 felony counts in connection the filming 14 people during meetings with health care providers in El Dorado, Los Angeles, Pasadena, and San Francisco, the Los Angeles Times reported.

The newspaper said the edited videos were published online, and were followed by a wave of threats to abortion providers and those who were secretly record. State prosecutors filed 14 felony counts of unlawfully recording people without their permission — one count for each person — as well as one count of conspiracy to invade privacy, the Times noted.

Last July in Houston, the Harris County district attorney's office dismissed charges against Daleiden and Merritt in connection with secretly videotaping Planned Parenthood officials there, the Houston Chronicle reported.

Daleiden and Merritt had been charged with tampering with a governmental record, for using a fake identification to gain access to the facility, the Chronicle noted.

"The right to privacy is a cornerstone of California's Constitution, and a right that is foundational in a free democratic society," state attorney general Xavier Becerra said, according to the Los Angeles Times.

Daleiden released a statement through the Center for Medical Progress Tuesday, calling the indictments "fake news."

"They tried the same collusion with corrupt officials in Houston, and failed: both the charges and the DA were thrown out," the statement said. "The public knows the real criminals are Planned Parenthood and their business partners like StemExpress and DV Biologics — currently being prosecuted in California — who have harvested and sold aborted baby body parts for profit for years in direct violation of state and federal law."

Mary Alice Carter, Planned Parenthood Federation of America interim vice president of communications, voiced support for the indictments in a statement.

"As we have said from the beginning, and as more than a dozen different state investigations have made clear: Planned Parenthood has done nothing wrong, and the only people who broke the law are those behind the fraudulent tapes," Carter said in the statement.

Becerra was a longtime Democratic U.S. Congressman before he became the state's attorney general in January, noted the Times.

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Planned Parenthood videos made undercover in an attempt to connect its officials with allegedly selling fetal tissue has landed two anti-abortion activists in hot water Tuesday with California prosecutors.
planned parenthood, videos, felony, charges
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2017-27-30
Thursday, 30 Mar 2017 06:27 AM
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