California court dismisses 14 charges against pro-life activists
by Leigh Jones
Posted 6/21/17, 04:11 pm
A California court on Wednesday dismissed 14 of the 15 charges filed by state Attorney General Xavier Becerra against pro-life activists David Daleiden and Sandra Merritt. The court ruled in response to a request from the pair’s attorneys, declaring the state did not provide legally sufficient evidence to support the charges. Merritt and Daleiden, founder of the Center for Medical Progress, secretly recorded videos of Planned Parenthood executives and abortionists talking about the fetal tissue trade. Becerra claimed both Merritt and Daleiden violated California law against secret recordings, even though they took all 14 videos listed in the complaint in public places. The last count against the pair, which remains outstanding, alleges conspiracy to invade privacy. Horatio Mihet, an attorney with the Christian law firm Liberty Counsel representing Merritt, noted no other undercover journalists have been charged under the state’s recording laws. Mat Staver, Liberty Counsel founder, said the firm would now work to have the final count dismissed.
This article has been edited to reflect that charges were dropped against both Sandra Merritt and David Daleiden.
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Leigh is acting managing editor for WORLD Radio. She is a World Journalism Institute graduate who spent six years as a newspaper reporter in Texas before joining WORLD. Leigh also co-wrote Infinite Monster: Courage, Hope, and Resurrection in the Face of One of America's Largest Hurricanes. She resides with her husband and daughter in Houston, Texas.