Undercover journalist and anti-abortion activist David Daleiden filed a lawsuit Tuesday in the U.S. District Court of California against Planned Parenthood, the former and current state attorneys general, and others for suppressing his video that exposed the activities of the abortion clinic in the illegal selling of body parts from aborted babies.
Daleiden's lawsuit claims that California officials are using the state's new recording laws to cover up the truth revealed in his exposé.
The state's recording law forbids the recording of "confidential" conversations but Daleiden provided examples of other news media in California using undercover videotaping which the attorney general's office never prosecuted.
Daleiden's organization, the Center for Medical Progress, released a statement Wednesday claiming that Daleiden was being prosecuted "not because of the method of video recording he utilized in his investigation" but for revealing information that California officials wanted to keep hidden.
"The California Attorney General first admitted that they are enforcing the video recording law solely based on how they feel about the message being published, and then further admitted they are not even trying to follow the text of the law as written," the organization said. "CMP's undercover reporting has been corroborated by the successful prosecution of fetal body parts sales we reported in southern California, multiple Congressional investigations, and forensic video analysis. It is every reporter's First Amendment right to underscore the gravity of their findings, especially when the politically powerful disagree with them."
Daleiden and pro-life journalistic colleague Sandra Merritt attended abortion industry conferences from 2013 to 2015, posing as human tissue procurers for a fake company called BioMax. They secretly recorded conversations of abortion doctors and staff before posting their findings online.
? In November, a federal judge awarded Panned Parenthood $2.2 million, including $870,000 in punitive damages.