Kathy Schiffer is a Catholic blogger. In addition to her blog Seasons of Grace, her articles have appeared in the National Catholic Register, Aleteia, Zenit, the Michigan Catholic, Legatus Magazine, and other Catholic publications. She’s worked for Catholic and other Christian ministries since 1988, as radio producer, director of special events and media relations coordinator. Kathy and her husband, Deacon Jerry Schiffer, have three adult children.
The pro-life activists who uncovered Planned Parenthood's sale of aborted baby body parts have been charged with 15 felony counts in California. Meanwhile, the abortionists and procurers of fetal tissue whose activity has been exposed in the videos continue to operate openly.
And as he has done in the past, David Daleiden responded to the new charges by releasing yet another undercover video, exposing a Planned Parenthood abortionist's callous disregard for human life.
In the 15 charges announced on March 28, California State Attorney General Xavier Becerra alleges that David Daleiden and Sandra Merritt, who operate the Irvine-based Center for Medical Progress, invaded the privacy of medical providers by filming without their consent. Becerra filed one charge for each of the 14 people filmed by the Center for Medical Progress between October 2013 and July 2015. In addition, a fifteenth count alleges criminal conspiracy to invade privacy.
Daleiden's Response to the Charges
The Center for Medical Progress issued a response to the charges, saying:
The bogus charges from Planned Parenthood’s political cronies are fake news. They tried the same collusion with corrupt officials in Houston, TX and failed: both the charges and the DA were thrown out. The public knows the real criminals are Planned Parenthood and their business partners like StemExpress and DV Biologics – currently being prosecuted in California – who have harvested and sold aborted baby body parts for profit for years in direct violation of state and federal law. We look forward to showing the entire world what is on our yet-unreleased video tapes of Planned Parenthood’s criminal baby body parts enterprise, in vindication of the First Amendment rights of all.
Video Shows Callous Disregard for Life, Intent to Circumvent the Law
In the video released on March 29, the Center for Medical Progress shows Dr. DeShawn Taylor, previously the Medical Director of Planned Parenthood of Arizona and a longtime abortion provider at Planned Parenthood Los Angeles, describing in graphic detail how to deliver intact fetuses in late-term abortions to harvest high-quality body parts.
In the new CMP video, when the investigators ask her about obtaining intact fetal organs, Dr. Taylor replies, “It’s not a matter of how I feel about it coming out intact, but I gotta worry about my staff and people’s feelings about it coming out looking like a baby.”
She continues, “We have the people who do our paperwork for the fetal death certificates, they email us calling them ‘babies.’ Baby this, baby that, baby so-and-so, and I’m like, that’s creepy!”
Dr. Taylor explains to the investigators, “In Arizona, if the fetus comes out with any signs of life, we’re supposed to transport it. To the hospital.” When one investigator then asks, “Is there any standard procedure for verifying signs of life?” Dr. Taylor replies, “Well, the thing is, I mean the key is, you need to pay attention to who’s in the room, right?”
Dr. Taylor then laughs as she repeats what the Arizona law requires, and says, “It’s a mess. It’s a mess.”
Attorney General Becerra's Longtime Support for Abortion
This new case against Daleiden and his team was introduced by California Attorney General Xavier Becerra. Becerra – a longtime Congressional Democrat – was sworn in as California's Attorney General only two months ago, on Jan. 24, 2017. Before that, from 1993 to 2017, Becerra was a member of the U.S. House of Representatives for California's 34th congressional district, which includes downtown Los Angeles. He served as Chairman of the House Democratic Caucus.
Becerra has a longstanding reputation as an abortion supporter, and in 2012 he received a 100% rating from Planned Parenthood and NARAL Pro-Choice America. While in Congress, Becerra voted against H.R. 3541, the Prenatal Nondiscrimination Act (PRENDA), which would have imposed civil and criminal penalties on anyone knowingly attempting to perform a sex-selective abortion. The bill also would have required healthcare providers to report known or suspected violations to law enforcement, including suspicions about a woman's motives for seeking an abortion.
The Ongoing Case Against Sale of Fetal Tissue
David Daleiden's Center for Medical Progress targeted two Orange County companies, DaVinci Biosciences and DV Biologics, in March 2016. As a result of the undercover videos, the two Yorba Linda companies and their owners, Estefano Isaias Sr. and Estefano Isaias Jr., were charged with illegally selling hundreds of fetal tissue products for profit and treating human parts as commodities.
Although state and federal law prevents selling or profiting from the sale of bodily tissues, the two companies have specialized in products derived from the cells and tissues of aborted fetuses. In Nov. 2014 and July 2015, the California Franchise Tax Board forfeited the companies' powers, rights and privileges, due to their failure to pay the required taxes and fees to transact business in the state.
On March 24, just four days before the new charges against Daleiden and Merritt were announced, the Orange County Superior Court overruled an attempt by defendants Estefano Isaias Sr. and Estefano Isaias Jr., to be dismissed from the case filed against them.
A Former Case in Texas Was Dropped
In July 2016, similar charges against Daleiden and Merritt in the state of Texas were dropped by the Harris County district attorney's office. In that case, the videographers were charged with tampering with a governmental record – a second-degree felony charge that carries up to 20 years in prison. Daleiden and Merritt had successfully infiltrated Planned Parenthood Gulf Coast, gaining access to the building by using fraudulent California driver's licenses.
Harris County District Attorney Devon Anderson said in a statement that Texas limits what can be investigated after a grand jury term gets extended, as had happened in the Daleiden case.