Thomas More Society Special Counsel Peter Breen was in court for oral arguments on November 17, 2017, as Planned Parenthood lawyers tried to fight off a free speech challenge presented by the David Daleiden defense team to the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco.
Daleiden, the undercover journalist who exposed the abortion giant’s role in trafficking aborted baby body parts, is now being sued by Planned Parenthood. The multi-billion-dollar outfit claims that Daleiden caused Planned Parenthood to lose millions of dollars and endangered the safety of its doctors and staff when he publicized recordings he made of a number of Planned Parenthood’s senior managers and medical directors admitting to selling aborted baby body parts and other violations of the law.
However, Daleiden points out that his reporting techniques are no different than those exercised by undercover journalists worldwide and that he did the public a service by revealing Planned Parenthood’s many violations of the law. The Thomas More Society and other attorneys representing Daleiden are seeking the dismissal of the suit’s state law claims under the California Anti-SLAPP Act, a law protecting the free speech of those brought into court on meritless legal claims. A three-judge panel of the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals will announce its decision shortly. [Courthouse News Service explains the legal conflict here.]
Following the hearing before Circuit Judge Mary Murguia, Circuit Judge Ronald Gould and Chief U.S. District Judge Nancy Freudenthal, Breen spoke to supporters and the media outside the courthouse. His prepared remarks included the following:
“Today’s hearing showed that we have put Planned Parenthood on the defense. This has not been a good year for them, and it’s not getting any better. This is one of many cases that are pending against David, for what he did in terms of exposing the lies of the abortion industry, particularly Planned Parenthood. What you’re going to see going forward is that there is no evidence of any wrongdoing – if anything, the wrongdoing is on the part of Planned Parenthood. We’ve challenged them and forced them to come to terms with this.
They continue to refuse, to try to dodge and duck, and have been unable to make a good answer for any of their claims. We are striking back and today is yet another part of ensuring that justice will be done in the end, baby body parts will no longer be sold, and abortion will no longer be so blithely thrust upon the women and children of America as the preferred ‘solution’ to untimely pregnancies. And we will again recognize the humanity of the unborn.”
Breen’s comments were made as part of a Students for Life of America press conference, at the final stop on the #SockIt2PP tour. The nationwide awareness and education initiative, headed by this Thomas More Society client, collected 328,348 pairs of baby socks – the same number of children that Planned Parenthood aborted in the last year. A truck filled with the socks – five thousand pounds of them – has toured the United States to represent Planned Parenthood’s voiceless victims and call upon Congress to defund the abortion Goliath.
Watch the November 17, 2017 press conference including comments from Thomas More Society Special Counsel Peter Breen here.