Yesterday afternoon, the House Select Panel on Infant Lives — tasked last year with exploring Planned Parenthood’s possible involvement in illegal fetal-tissue trafficking — released a complete list of the criminal referrals it has made so far during the course of its investigation.
The panel was established last fall in the wake of the Center for Medical Progress’s undercover videos, which revealed evidence of extensive wrongdoing on the part of Planned Parenthood affiliates and associated organization. Since that time, the panel has issued 15 criminal and regulatory referrals to federal, state, and local authorities, advising further investigation into the practices of these organizations, as well as possible prosecution if additional evidence of illegal activity is found.
Over the course of the investigation, the bipartisan panel has discovered increasingly damning evidence of the fact that abortion clinics and tissue-procurement organizations (TPOs) — groups such as StemExpress and Advanced Bioscience Resources, which partner with Planned Parenthood and other clinics to obtain fetal tissue and resell it at a profit to research firms — have repeatedly conspired to violate a federal statute making it a felony to profit from the sale of human fetal tissue.
There is also some evidence that Planned Parenthood and other entities might have violated federal privacy laws meant to protect vulnerable women from exploitation. In addition, many of the groups implicated in illegal activity have withheld, tampered with, or destroyed documents relevant to the investigation in order to disguise evidence of wrongdoing; the House panel voted to hold StemExpress in contempt of Congress for lack of compliance in this regard.
The panel is expected to complete a final report by the end of the year, detailing its work so far and outlining all of the evidence of this criminal activity on the part of the abortion industry and its accomplices. The members have not yet decided when that report will be available to the public.