According to LifeSiteNews, Judge Christopher C. Hite issued a 15-page ruling on Monday stating that he will not quash the search warrant of the home belonging to Center for Medical Progress’ David Daleiden. The defense attorneys had argued that Daleiden and co-defendant Sandra Merritt are citizen journalists and therefore are protected by California’s Shield Law. Hite disagreed.
Defense attorneys had initially filed a motion back in August to quash and traverse the search warrant that then-attorney general Kamala Harris signed on April 5, 2016. A second motion to quash and traverse the search warrant was filed on September 3.
“[E]ven assuming Daleiden was a journalist at the time of the recordings his actions would not be protected by the California Shield Law or the Federal Privacy Protection Act under the circumstances alleged in the search warrant,” wrote Hite. He went on to say that the law under which Daleiden is charged “does not contain an express exception for media, journalists or other First Amendment protected news-gathering agencies or activities.”
Hite said that he believes there was “sufficient probable cause in the warrant that Daleiden was engaged in criminal activity irrespective of his journalistic status and that the items seized were related to criminal activity.”
Hite also ruled against a Franks hearing on Monday, according to LifeSiteNews. The defense team had requested it based on the testimony of Special Agent Brian Cardwell. According to USlegal.com, a Franks hearing is “a hearing to determine whether a police officer’s affidavit used to obtain a search warrant that yields incriminating evidence was based on false statements by the police.”
As reported by LifeSiteNews, Cardwell testified that when Department of Justice agents interviewed Planned Parenthood chief counsel Beth Parker, she said “Planned Parenthood would like the computers used to produce the videos.”
His affidavit was also missing information on the “confidentiality” claims of the Does.
“Agent Cardwell’s heart was not in it,” said Daleiden’s attorney, Brentford Ferreira. “He did what he was told.” He argued that the police “knew that this was politics and not a criminal investigation. They knew that.”
Hite, however, ruled that there was not enough evidence presented by the defense team to allow for a Franks hearing. Further details can be read at LifeSiteNews.
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