Judge Suppresses Evidence Of Baby Body Part Trafficking In Planned Parenthood Trial
‘We’re not going into the truth of abortion procedures. I’ve excluded that,’ said Judge William Orrick during the trial of Planned Parenthood v. David Daleiden.
Over the last two weeks in the ongoing federal civil jury trial of Planned Parenthood against David Daleiden, Judge William Orrick has repeatedly cut off defense questioning that he considers straying too close to eliciting information related to Planned Parenthood’s history of selling tissue from aborted fetuses.
Planned Parenthood is suing undercover journalist David Daleiden and others associated with his organization, Center for Medical Progress (CPM), alleging that Daleiden and his team committed illegal wiretapping, trespassing, breaches of confidentiality, and more. The challenge that Planned Parenthood attorneys have accepted is to make the case that Daleiden and his team illegally recorded private conversations, without admitting what exactly those conversations were about.
But it’s not just the plaintiffs who don’t want the jury to consider the potentially illegal activities happening at Planned Parenthood clinics. Judge Orrick laid out the ground rules to the jury in his opening statements on Day One, saying this case “is not about the truth of whether plaintiffs profited from the sale of fetal tissue or otherwise violated the law in securing tissue for those programs,” and adding that, “those issues are a matter of dispute between the parties in the world outside this courtroom.”
On day two of the trial, when defense attorney Horatio Mihet asked Daleiden’s partner and CMP investigator, Sandra Merritt, about information she learned about the human tissue procurement company StemExpress from a Planned Parenthood whistleblower, Orrick ordered the court to take a break. He sent the jury out of the room and lectured Mihet for disobeying his orders to not discuss abortion procedures.
“I just want to be very clear that I want these witnesses to be able to testify as to what their reasonable state of mind was with respect to the specific defense…but we’re not going into the truth of abortion procedures. I’ve excluded that,” Orrick said.