by Steven Ertelt
January 10, 2008
Appleton, WI (LifeNews.com) — A leading Wisconsin attorney who is representing a man who tried to force his girlfriend to have an abortion has received court approval to remove himself from the case. Tom Zoesch was representing Manish Patel in the case, but has decided to excuse himself after Patel apparently fled the country.
Patel, who hails from India, is charged with lacing his girlfriend Darshana Patel’s drink with the dangerous abortion drug RU 486, otherwise known as mifepristone.
The abortion drug has been responsible for killing 13 women worldwide and injuring another 1,100 in the United States alone.
Patel has been charged with attempted first-degree homicide of an unborn child and six other charges in the case. He posted a $750,000 bail with the help of friends and family but apparently fled the country last month.
Zoesch has his request to be removed as Patel’s legal counsel approved Thursday.
At the time he signed up to defend Patel, Zoesch was heralded as a top-flight lawyer who might have gotten his client off the hook.
"We are fashioning theories of defense that definitely do exist," Zoesch said last month after agreeing to represent Patel. "This is not a slam dunk for the DA’s office by any means. Manish and I are very pleased with the resources we’ve been able to put together to fight this case."
Wisconsin’s Fetal Homicide Law was enacted in 1998.
The law recognizes unborn children as separate victims when they are killed or injured as the result of violence directed toward the unborn child’s mother or the unborn child by a third party. The law applies regardless of the gestational age of the unborn child.
According to the National Right to Life Committee, 35 states recognize the unlawful killing of an unborn child as homicide in at least some circumstances.
Some 25 of those laws protect pregnant women and their unborn children throughout pregnancy and another 10 offer justice only after viability.