One of the founding board members for the organization that captured on video Planned Parenthood and other abortion-industry executives negotiating the price of the body parts of unborn babies says it is “gratifying” to know a formal criminal investigation is under way.
The comment came from Troy Newman, president of Operation Rescue and board member of the Center for Medical Progress, or CMP.
CMP released in 2015 more than a dozen undercover videos showing Planned Parenthood and other abortion industry executives discussing how much they should be paid for the unborn baby body parts. One famously said, in the pursuit of higher prices, “I want a Lamborghini.”
“It is gratifying to learn that a criminal investigation of the nation’s largest abortion merchant is under way,” said Newman.
The confirmation of the investigation into Planned Parenthood and others came in a letter sent Thursday from the Department of Justice to Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, the chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee.
WND reported in October the FBI said it was reviewing the recommendations of two congressional committees to investigate evidence of Planned Parenthood’s trade in the body parts of unborn children.
WND reported in May that leaders of several advocacy groups representing millions of Americans had written to Attorney General Jeff Sessions and then-acting FBI Director Andrew McCabe seeking an investigation, based on evidence from CMP’s probe into “paid fetal tissue transfers involving Planned Parenthood.”
“The facts uncovered raise a reasonable suspicion that these organizations, and/or individuals employed by them, may have engaged in a conspiracy to violate the fetal tissue law,” the letter said.
That was when the FBI’s assistant director of the Office of Congressional Affairs, Gregory Brower, replied to Grassley, informing him the FBI received the committee’s criminal referrals of Planned Parenthood and was reviewing the recommendations, according to the nonprofit legal group Liberty Counsel.
Liberty Counsel is representing one of the undercover videographers, Sandra Merritt.
The letter to Grassley was delivered during the summer but was not publicized by the Judiciary Committee until later, Liberty Counsel said.
“We can confirm the Criminal Investigative Division (CID) of FBI Headquarters received your referrals and sent them to the relevant FBI field offices for review,” the letter said, “and whatever action that is deemed appropriate. Should the field offices have any questions pertaining to findings with the Majority Staff Report, they will be certain to contact your office.”
The leaders who requested the FBI investigation include Jeanne Mancini of the March for Life Education & Defense Fund, Tom McClusky of the March for Life Action, Daniel Schneider of the American Conservative Union, Catherine Glenn Foster of Americans United for Life; Gary Bauer of American Values, Jim Backlin of Christian Coalition of America, Penny Young Nance of Concerned Women for America, Michael Bowen of SoliDeo Partners, Eunie Smith of Eagle Forum; Rebekah Gantner of Eagle Forum Education & Legal Defense Fund, David Christensen of Family Research Council, Jonathan Alexandre of Liberty Counsel Action, Mat Staver of Liberty Counsel, Paul Caprio of One Nation Under God Foundation and Marjorie Dannenfelser of Susan B. Anthony List.
Liberty Counsel noted the Senate Judiciary Committee and the U.S. House Select Panel on Infant Lives both opened investigations into the abortion industry after CMP first exposed the baby-body-parts trade in 2015. Late last year, both committees concluded their investigations by recommending that the FBI investigate and potentially file criminal charges against Planned Parenthood.
‘True face of Planned Parenthood’
The letter Thursday from Justice Department Assistant Attorney General for Legislative Affairs Stephen Boyd verified a criminal investigation was ongoing.
“As a co-founder of the Center for Medical Progress, I am very proud our work in exposing Planned Parenthood’s criminal conduct,” said Newman.
“The videos show the true face of Planned Parenthood; one that is obsessed with exploiting every possible profit stream from their abortion business at the expense of the women they purport to serve,” Newman continued. “Greed, deception, and exploitation of the vulnerable are all hallmarks of Planned Parenthood’s nefarious activities.”
Newman and other CMP members continue to fight federal lawsuits filed by Planned Parenthood and the National Abortion Federation, which won an injunction to halt the release of further videos and barred the sharing of videos with law enforcement officials even if they contained evidence of crimes.
CMP founder David Daleiden said: “Over two years ago, citizen journalists at The Center for Medical Progress first caught Planned Parenthood’s top abortion doctors in a series of undercover videos callously and flippantly negotiating the sale of tiny baby hearts, lungs, livers, and brains. Since then, two Congressional investigations found even deeper wrongdoing and confirmed that Planned Parenthood Federation of America, several of their biggest affiliates, and multiple business partners broke the law in a profit-driven scheme to commodify dismembered baby body parts. It is time for public officials to finally hold Planned Parenthood and their criminal abortion enterprise accountable under the law.”
Because the Obama administration was in the White House at the time the congressional referrals were made, nothing was done at the time, and the reviews have only begun under the Trump administration.
One of the videos showed an official admitting Planned Parenthood sells fully intact aborted babies.
In the first undercover video released by CMP, Deborah Nucatola of Planned Parenthood commented on crushing babies.
“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,” she said.
See the first video:
In the second video, Planned Parenthood’s Mary Gatter discussed how her compensation for organs could rise when she said, “I want a Lamborghini.”
See her comments:
The fifth video released shows Melissa Farrell of Planned Parenthood’s Houston clinic discussing “intact fetal cadavers.”
The seventh video has the testimony of a Planned Parenthood worker who tapped an aborted infant’s heart and saw it start beating.
WND reported when a Planned Parenthood-linked judge in California, William Orrick III, censored the latest undercover video that was released.
Even news outlets not party to the case were barred from posting the video.
WND, however, transcribed for its readers the comments of the abortion-industry figures.
Lisa Harris, medical director for Planned Parenthood of Michigan, says in the video: “Our stories don’t really have a place in a lot of pro-choice discourse and rhetoric, right? The heads that get stuck that we can’t get out. The hemorrhages that we manage.”
Susan Robinson of Planned Parenthood of Mar Monte in San Jose, California: “The fetus is a tough little object and taking it apart, I mean taking it apart, on day one is very difficult.’
Talcott Camp, deputy director of the American Civil Liberties Union’s Reproductive Health Freedom Project: “I’m like oh my god! I get it! When the skull is broken, that’s really sharp. I get it, I understand why people are talking about getting that skull out, that calvarium.”
Deborah Nucatola, senior director of medical services at Planned Parenthood Federation of America: “You know, sometimes she’ll tell me she wants brain, and we’ll, you know, leave the calvarium in ’til last, and then try to basically take it, or actually, you know, catch everything, and even keep it separate from the rest of the tissue so it doesn’t get lost.”
Uta Landy, founder of the Consortium of Abortion providers for Planned Parenthood: “An eyeball just fell down into my lap, and that is gross.”
Her comment was followed by raucous laughter from the abortionists at the meeting of the National Abortion Federation, where the undercover video was taken.
The video was the work of the Center for Medical Progress, which since 2015 has released more than a dozen videos of abortionists. Most of the videos have been released to the public, but the National Abortion Federation went to court demanding that videos of its members speaking be removed from the Web.
There were other notable comments in the videos.
Ann Schutt-Aine of Planned Parenthood of the Gulf Coast: “If I’m doing a procedure, and I’m seeing that I’m in fear that it’s about to come to the umbilicus, I might ask for a second set of forceps to hold the body at the cervix, and pull off a leg, or two, so it’s not PBA (partial-birth abortion).”
Harris again: “Given that we actually see the fetus the same, and given that we might actually both agree that there’s violence in here, ask me why I come to work every day. Let’s just give them all the violence, it’s a person, it’s killing, let’s just give them all that.”
Susan Robinson of Planned Parenthood Mar Monte: “You go in there, and you go, ‘am I getting the uterus, or the fetus? Oh good fetus. What have I got. Nothing. Let’s try again.'”
Leslie Drummond of Planned Parenthood Mar Monte: “I get a lot of ‘oohs’ and aahs’ from Stemex(press) you know, they’re wanting livers. Last week I was in Sacramento and she said, ‘I need four intact limbs’ and I said ‘you want what?'”
Paul Blumenthal, Planned Parenthood of Maryland: “I know Planned Parenthood sells a lot of stuff (fetal organs) to people.”
Deb Vanderhei of the Consortium of Abortion Providers: “But the truth is that some might want to do it for, to increase their revenues. And we can’t stop them.”