Unlicensed Abortion Business Owner Sits in Prison Awaiting Second Sentencing
by Steven Ertelt
February 13, 2009
San Diego, CA (LifeNews.com) — The owner of a chain of abortion centers in California who was expected to be sentenced last week on additional charges of unlicensed abortions is sitting in state prison awaiting a postponed hearing. Bertha Pinedo Bugarin, 48, will have her hearing delayed until February 27.
Bugarin was sentenced earlier this month to three years and four months in prison on charges of pretending to be a physician and doing abortions without a medical license.
She had pleaded no contest to seven felony counts in Los Angeles Superior Court.
Bugarin was accused of putting more than a dozen patients at risk by doing abortions on them or giving them the dangerous RU 486 abortion drug without having medical training.
Now, Bugarin faces sentencing in San Diego County on similar charges. She had a hearing in that case last month and could be headed to jail for nine years in association with those charges.
The pro-life group Operation Rescue has been closely following the case and informed LifeNews.com today that the hearing will take place in two weeks.
"Bugarin is cooling her heels in a state prison while she awaits her scheduled sentencing in San Diego on February 27 at 1:30 PM on nine felony counts of practicing medicine without a license," the group indicated.
The pro-life group began exposing the problems at Bugarin’s abortion centers as early as 1991.
"Information finally caught the attention of authorities and Bugarin was arrested last year along with her sister, who helped her commit illegal abortions," OR said.
"Also arrested was sex offender Laurence Reich, who was convicted twice for molesting and raping his abortion patients. Even though his license was revoked, Reich continued to do abortions illegally until his arrest early last year," the group added.
Prosecutors have found at least nine women who have said Bugarin did abortions on them and one of the women had to be hospitalized three times because of complications from the failed abortion. She eventually gave birth prematurely and the baby died three hours later.
Another woman had to return to the abortion center a second time because Bugarin allegedly botched the first attempt at doing the abortion.
Bugarin operates several abortion businesses in the southern California area operating under the name Clinica Medica Para La Mujer De Hoy. At its height of prosperity, the chain ran eleven abortion centers, but problems with the incompetent abortion practitioners hired by Bugarin troubled the chain.
According to Operation Rescue, abortion practitioner Nolan Jones, who has his own problems with state medical authorities with numerous cases of Medical Board disciplinary action for botched abortions, is running them.
Jones filed for bankruptcy for substantial amounts of debt in 2003 and has bounced around several southern California abortion centers moving to new ones when others close for medical problems or other reasons.
Nicholas Braemer, the medical director of the abortion centers, surrendered his medical license under pressure in 2000 after Operation Rescue exposed his numerous botched abortions and other problems.
He was replaced as medical director by Reich.
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