Judge Christopher Hite of the San Francisco Superior Court has already dismissed one and a half of the 15 felony criminal charges brought against Sandra Merritt by California Attorney General Xavier Becerra for her undercover journalism work which exposed Planned Parenthood’s trade in baby body parts. The statute of limitations has run out on these dismissed charges so they cannot be brought again.

The undercover videos, most of which were recorded at the National Abortion Federation’s (NAF) 2014 and 2015 abortion convention and trade shows, exposed Planned Parenthood’s illegal involvement in harvesting and selling aborted baby body parts to companies such as StemExpress. The recordings capture Planned Parenthood executives haggling over the prices of baby body parts, picking through bloodied arms and legs of aborted babies in a pie tray, and discussing how to alter abortion methods to obtain better body parts for sale.

Merritt and Merritt’s co-defendant, David Daleiden, the founder of the Center for Medical Progress, are the first undercover journalists to be criminally prosecuted in the history of the state. As Liberty Counsel defends Merritt, no other citizen journalist or journalism organization has ever been charged with a crime for undercover recordings made in the public interest.

During the two-week preliminary criminal hearing, Judge Hite dismissed the charge regarding “Doe 8,” an abortion professor at a taxpayer-funded, public university, who never showed up to testify last week.

The other charge concerned two alleged events with “Doe 9,” a Planned Parenthood doctor.  However, half of that charge was dismissed since the attorney general’s office never played the video in court of the alleged incident on April 8, 2014.

Liberty Counsel’s Founder and Chairman Mat Staver said, “Each day of this hearing reveals that this case is frivolous and should be dismissed immediately. The state of California has abused the legal process by prosecuting Sandra Merritt when she did nothing wrong. The entire case should be dismissed.”

Liberty Counsel

Author: Liberty Counsel