Select Panel Hearing on Baby Body Parts Reveals Sufficient Evidence to Launch Federal Investigation

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WASHINGTON, D.C. – Yesterday, the House Select Investigative Panel on Infant Lives held a hearing on “The Pricing of Fetal Tissue” as it continues its investigation into whether abortion centers and tissue procurement businesses were profiting from the sale of baby body parts, organs and tissues in violation of federal law.  Three former U.S. prosecutors on the panel testified that there is sufficient evidence to launch a federal grand jury investigation based on the exhibits provided.

Arina Grossu, FRC’s Director of the Center for Human Dignity reacted,

“We are grateful to Rep. Marsha Blackburn and all of the House members of the Select Panel for their diligence.  The information revealed by the Select Panel’s investigation is groundbreaking.  Some of the exhibits show actual invoices from Planned Parenthood to Stem Express, charging for each aborted baby as well as other purchase orders for baby body parts.  The Panel’s findings also reveal that Stem Express was working with 100 abortion centers nationwide in 2015, which is 1 in every 5 abortion centers, 20% of the abortion industry.  The problem is even more pervasive and widespread than we thought.  The Panel’s findings go far beyond what we learned last summer with the Center for Medical Progress’ revelations. They show serious evidence of violations of federal law profiting off the sale of unborn baby organs. Clearly this warrants further congressional investigation and shows the need for a federal Department of Justice investigation to uncover the truth about the abortion industry’s sale of baby body parts.”

Brian P. Lennon, a former U.S. Attorney for Michigan, “Based on my review of the exhibits, a competent, ethical federal prosecutor could establish probable cause that both the abortion clinics and the procurement business violated the statute, aided and abetted one another in violating the statute, and likely conspired together to violate the statute… In my opinion, and assuming the validity and admissibility of the exhibits provided to me, there is sufficient evidence to launch a federal grand jury investigation targeting the abortion clinics and the procurement business identified in the exhibits…”

Michael J. Norton, a former U.S. Attorney for Colorado testified, “It seems clear from the documents and evidence that the Select Committee on Infant Lives has gathered, as well as the videos I have reviewed, that there has been profiteering at multiple levels in this grisly business…In my opinion, there is probable cause to believe that the relevant statute has been violated. It is therefore also my opinion that our Nation would also be well-served by an aggressive investigation and, should the facts support it, the prosecution of these criminal violations by the appropriate federal authorities.”

Kenneth W. Sukhia, a former U.S. Attorney for Florida testified, “Accounting and marketing materials from the fetal tissue procurement business demonstrate beyond question that there is more than sufficient cause to support a full investigation by federal authorities to determine if such practices violate the felony provisions of 42 USC §289 g-2.”

Rep. Mia Love (R-Utah) and attorney Catherine Glenn Foster both discussed how the abortion centers gave tissue procurement technicians patient information before the abortion and before they signed informed consent forms, serious violations of HIPAA which must also be investigated.

Majority witness testimony included four attorneys and Sen. Ben Sasse (R-Neb.).  The minority witness testimonies included Sen. Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) and two attorneys: Fay Clayton, a self-proclaimed patient of Planned Parenthood, and Robert Raben, president and founder of The Raben Group-- Planned Parenthood’s crisis management PR firm.

The full hearing can be found here.