Planned Parenthood made a big mistake in its case against undercover journalists with the Center for Medical Progress, their lawyers said this week.
The civil trial began last week against David Daleiden, Sandra Merritt and others who helped to release undercover videos of Planned Parenthood allegedly selling aborted baby body parts for profit. The trial is separate from a criminal case against Daleiden and Merritt launched by former California Attorney General Kamala Harris.
American Center for Law and Justice Chief Counsel Jay Sekulow, who is defending the journalists, said Planned Parenthood “fought tooth and nail” to keep details of the CMP investigation from the jury, World Net Daily reports.
During the trial, however, the abortion chain’s “own attorney opened the door” to allow discussion of Planned Parenthood’s unethical and potentially illegal practices, Sekulow said.
“This is a very big deal in this case,” he said.
Planned Parenthood’s lawyer made the mistake after calling Merritt to the stand, according to the legal group.
“The judge in the case has said that the abortion- related nature of the videos should not be the focus of the trial,” according to the ACLJ. “But the attorney for Planned Parenthood opened the door by asking Merritt why she recorded her conversations with the Planned Parenthood doctor. And the judge allowed it.
“Merritt’s answer was that her main reason for participating was to see if Planned Parenthood was engaged in criminal activity,” according to her lawyers. “She said that she went undercover to see if abortionists were really willing to alter the abortion procedure in order to profit from the sale of human body parts, such as performing partial-birth abortion. She also wanted to see if any other laws were being violated.”
Planned Parenthood is accusing Merritt, Daleiden and others of more than a dozen crimes, including trespassing, breach of confidentiality, wiretapping and conspiracy, The Federalist reports. It wants hundreds of thousands of dollars in damages for increased security costs allegedly caused by the undercover investigation.
Daleiden and his fellow investigators contend that they did not do anything wrong; they are undercover journalists who worked to expose the unethical and potentially illegal harvesting and sales of aborted baby body parts by Planned Parenthood, the nation’s largest abortion provider.
On Tuesday, Daleiden accused Judge William Orrick of “major due process violations” by granting Planned Parenthood’s lawyers’ request to ban them from showing the jury their undercover videos.
In a post on Twitter, Daleiden asked how they can defend themselves against Planned Parenthood’s “privacy” accusations without showing the footage of the allegedly private conversations.
“You can’t keep out from the lawsuit the reason why the entire project was undertaken,” Peter Breen, lead defense attorney, vice president, and senior counsel at the Thomas More Society, told The Federalist. “You can’t have a trial without telling people what they were doing in there or why they were there. That has a significant bearing on how you view the project.”
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Breen said lawyers for the abortion chain constantly have been trying to block from the trial any evidence of aborted baby parts trafficking that Daleiden uncovered in his investigation.
The mistake during Merritt’s questioning could change that.
Last week, a Planned Parenthood witness also admitted that some of the security “threats” were just letters from people saying they were praying for abortion clinic staff and other incidents had nothing to do with the undercover investigation.
The trial is expected to continue through early November.
The expose videos catching Planned Parenthood officials selling the body parts of aborted babies have shocked the nation. Here is a list of all 14:
- In the first video: Dr. Deborah Nucatola of Planned Parenthood commented on baby-crushing: “We’ve been very good at getting heart, lung, liver, because we know that, so I’m not gonna crush that part, I’m gonna basically crush below, I’m gonna crush above, and I’m gonna see if I can get it all intact.”
- In the second video: Planned Parenthood’s Dr. Mary Gatter joked, “I want a Lamborghini” as she negotiated the best price for baby parts.
- In the third video: Holly O’Donnell, a former Stem Express employee who worked inside a Planned Parenthood clinic, detailed first-hand the unspeakable atrocities and how she fainted in horror over handling baby legs.
- In the fourth video: Planned Parenthood’s Dr. Savita Ginde stated, “We don’t want to do just a flat-fee (per baby) of like, $200. A per-item thing works a little better, just because we can see how much we can get out of it.” She also laughed while looking at a plate of fetal kidneys that were “good to go.”
- In the fifth video: Melissa Farrell of Planned Parenthood-Gulf Coast in Houston boasted of Planned Parenthood’s skill in obtaining “intact fetal cadavers” and how her “research” department “contributes so much to the bottom line of our organization here, you know we’re one of the largest affiliates, our Research Department is the largest in the United States.”
- In the sixth video: Holly O’Donnell described technicians taking fetal parts without patient consent: “There were times when they would just take what they wanted. And these mothers don’t know. And there’s no way they would know.”
- In the seventh and perhaps most disturbing video: Holly O’Donnell described the harvesting, or “procurement,” of organs from a nearly intact late-term fetus aborted at Planned Parenthood Mar Monte’s Alameda clinic in San Jose, CA. “‘You want to see something kind of cool,’” O’Donnell says her supervisor asked her. “And she just taps the heart, and it starts beating. And I’m sitting here and I’m looking at this fetus, and its heart is beating, and I don’t know what to think.”
- In the eighth video: StemExpress CEO Cate Dyer admits Planned Parenthood sells “a lot of” fully intact aborted babies.
- The ninth video: catches a Planned Parenthood medical director discussing how the abortion company sells fully intact aborted babies — including one who “just fell out” of the womb.
- The 10th video: catches the nation’s biggest abortion business selling specific body parts — including the heart, eyes and “gonads” of unborn babies. The video also shows the shocking ways in which Planned Parenthood officials admit that they are breaking federal law by selling aborted baby body parts for profit.
- Unreleased Videos: Unreleased videos from CMP show Deb Vanderhei of Planned Parenthood caught on tape talking about how Planned Parenthood abortion business affiliates may “want to increase revenue [from selling baby parts] but we can’t stop them…” Another video has a woman talking about the “financial incentives” of selling aborted baby body parts.
- The 11th video: catches a Texas Planned Parenthood abortionist planning to sell the intact heads of aborted babies for research. Amna Dermish is caught on tape describing an illegal partial-birth abortion procedure to terminate living, late-term unborn babies which she hopes will yield intact fetal heads for brain harvesting.
- The 12th video in the series shows new footage of Jennefer Russo, medical director at Planned Parenthood in Orange County, California, describing to undercover investigators how her abortion business tries to harvest intact aborted babies’ bodies for a local for-profit biotech company and changes the abortion procedure to do so.
- The 13th video: exposes a Planned Parenthood medical director admitting that babies born alive after abortion are sometimes killed.
- The 14th video: catches Planned Parenthood executives discussing gruesome abortion procedures and the sale of body parts from aborted babies for profit.