UPDATE: Planned Parenthood is announcing that Planned Parenthood of the Rocky Mountains is also joining the lawsuit.
In January, Planned Parenthood Federation of America, along with several California Planned Parenthood affiliates, filed a suit against the Center for Medical Progress, alleging the pro-life group violated the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations (RICO) Act. Planned Parenthood also claims that the Center for Medical Progress “committed fraud, trespassed on private property, illegally and secretly recorded footage and invaded the privacy of Planned Parenthood employees.”
Now, Houston’s Planned Parenthood affiliate has joined the suit. The case centers around undercover videos filmed by the Center for Medical Progress, which show Planned Parenthood officials discussing the sale of fetal body parts. One of the videos was filmed at Planned Parenthood Gulf Coast Houston.
Melaney Linton, president of Planned Parenthood Gulf Coast, criticized the videos as outright lies…
Extreme anti-abortion politicians who want to ban abortion have invoked these lies to fuel their efforts to pass extreme restrictions on access to reproductive health care… These extreme anti-abortion activists acted illegally and then spread lies about our care.
But the Center for Medical Progress argues that Planned Parenthood is the group at fault, and is attempting to turn blame on the Center for Medical Progress for exposing them. In a statement, the Center for Medical progress defended themselves:
Planned Parenthood is under investigation by the United States Congress and multiple law enforcement agencies, while their business is drying up and the public is turning against their barbaric abortion for baby parts trade. Now they are filing a frivolous lawsuit in retaliation for CMP’s First Amendment investigative journalism that has done nothing more than tell the truth about Planned Parenthood’s lawless operations.
This last-ditch move of desperation is going to expose all of the sordid dealings of the California Planned Parenthood affiliates to the light of the legal system and the public will see them for the corrupt abortion and baby body parts profiteers that they really are.
Planned Parenthood Gulf Coast’s director of research in Houston, Melissa Farrell, admitted on CMP’s undercover video that her research department “contributes so much to the bottom line of our organization here” and stated during price negotiations that it was easy to make it look like Planned Parenthood wasn’t actually profiting from the sale of fetal body parts:
Yeah and so if we alter our process, and we are able to obtain intact fetal cadavers, then we can make it part of the budget, that any dissections are this, and splitting the specimens into different shipments is this. It’s all just a matter of line items.