A group of pro-life activists lost its final motion to prevent a $16 million punitive judgment against them for releasing undercover videos of abortion industry insiders discussing the harvesting and sale of organs from aborted babies.
Operation Rescue made the announcement Friday concerning appeals by the pro-life investigative group Center for Medical Progress, attorney Steve Cooley, Operation Rescue’s Troy Newman, and pro-life activists Sandra Merritt and Albin Rhomberg.
Starting in 2015, CMP began releasing a series of secretly-recorded conversations with officials from Planned Parenthood and the National Abortion Federation, which set off a firestorm of controversy and a string of revelations about the abortion industry breaking multiple federal laws against profiting off human tissue, altering abortion procedures for the sake of procuring better tissue samples, and potentially even committing partial-birth abortions or infanticide, as well as video examples of abortion workers displaying callousness toward the humanity of the children their work killed.
Neither the Obama nor Trump administrations took action against the abortion organizations over the revelations, but the pro-lifers who exposed their activities were hit with various lawsuits and felony charges on claims of trespassing, misidentifying themselves with fake driver’s licenses, and recording people without their consent. Last year, CMP appealed a nearly $16 million judgment against them, arguing that the federal Racketeer Influenced & Corrupt Organizations (RICO) Act had been misapplied. The U.S. Supreme Court declined to hear that appeal in October.
“I have always maintained my innocence and will continue to do so,” Newman said of the latest development, vowing to use “every legal means available” to resist Planned Parenthood’s efforts to collect. “There can be little doubt that Planned Parenthood’s substantial political clout contributed to what I consider to be an injustice against those of us who exposed proof of Planned Parenthood’s grisly baby-parts trafficking practices.”
“The public deserves the truth about the horrific nature of the business of abortion, and I will continue to expose the barbaric practices of Planned Parenthood, despite this setback,” he added. “I will not be intimidated into silence.”