SAN FRANCISCO (ChurchMilitant.com) - Bombshell testimony from the trial of Center for Medical Progress undercover journalists David Daleiden and Sandra Merritt has revealed that infanticide is commonplace inside U.S. abortion mills.
Earlier this month, attorneys for Daleiden submitted a closing argument brief detailing that live births are occurring inside the facilities and that these newborns are routinely killed — their organs harvested while still alive.
Describing Daleiden's research into the practice, the brief recounts that he discovered "a mainstream media exposé produced and aired in 2000 by Chris Wallace for the program '20/20.'"
From Wallace's report, Daleiden learned of Dean Alberty, who worked as a fetal tissue procurement technician inside a Planned Parenthood facility in suburban Kansas City.
According to the brief:
From the "20/20" video he learned that Alberty had been handed whole fetuses from Planned Parenthood doctors and had harvested beating hearts. Alberty had also testified before Congress and described a live birth of twins who were actually cuddling each other. He would not harvest from them and the abortion doctor drowned them in a pan of water.
The practice was not isolated to Kansas City, Daleiden discovered.
In the course of his research, he came across the book Beyond Abortion: A Chronicle of Fetal Experimentation, which documents experiments performed on unborn babies, as well as the removal of organs from infant abortion survivors.
In Beyond Abortion, Daleiden found an article titled "Artificial Placenta," which described "obtaining live fetuses as old as 24 weeks from unnamed abortionists and keeping them alive in a machine for study but letting them drown in the machine after obtaining data."
In the summer of 2011, he learned of a company named StemExpress, which specializes in providing "biospecimens" to researchers across the country; a deeper look at the firm revealed the scale of tissue harvesting occurring inside American abortion mills.
Daleiden discovered that StemExpress required "tissue procurers to service 48 universities and 8 private entities with fetal organs and tissues."
He later uncovered "a StemExpress order form with a list of organs and tissues for sale, including whole hearts, hearts with veins and arteries attached, as well as brains, livers and other organs."
He then found "a Stanford study using whole human fetal hearts obtained from StemExpress which they put on a Langendorff perfusion machine."
According to the brief:
Mr. Daleiden learned through his own research and by consulting experts, including Dr. Theresa Deisher, that in order to use the Langendorff machine the heart had to either still be beating when it was placed on the machine or a beating heart had to be arrested in a relaxed state in a potassium solution and then quickly transported to the machine. ... Dr. Deisher testified that she told Mr. Daleiden that the "most horrifying aspect of the use of the remains of aborted fetuses was that some of the babies had to be alive, have beating hearts when they were harvested."
Deisher, a stem cell research scientist, testified that based on her experience with stem cell research on hearts, this was a frequent occurrence. The babies' hearts have to be harvested while still beating, she explained, as otherwise the organ would have no research value because once in "contracture," the heart's cells would no longer be capable of regenerative growth.
The brief detailed additional evidence of infanticide — including testimony by a former StemExpress employee:
Mr. Daleiden continued to gather evidence for his investigation. He met Holly O'Donnell who had worked for StemExpress and told him she left after seeing a late gestated fetus. She was directed to dissect its brain. She did so. She also told him that her superior Jessica tapped the fetuses' heart and it started beating. She also told him of seeing a message stating that an intact fetus was being sent to the StemExpress facility.
Daleiden later learned that "StemExpress technicians had to work very closely with the abortion doctors at [Planned Parenthood] MarMonte who increased dilation on the patients in order to obtain intact fetuses with beating hearts."
California Attorney General Xavier Becerra — a self-identified Catholic — is prosecuting Daleiden and Merritt for their undercover work. In his preliminary hearing closing argument, he made no effort to rebut testimony about the harvesting of infant abortion survivors' organs.
Instead, Becerra suggested that harvesting organs from newly born infants is protected by the state's abortion statutes.
The "defendants willfully misrepresent the law on homicide in California," he argued. "California law is clear that therapeutic abortion is not homicide."
Pro-life advocates counter that there is nothing "therapeutic" about harvesting beating hearts from live infants.