Criminal Probes for Harvey Weinstein in NY and UK, None Yet in California

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by David Nussman  •  ChurchMilitant.com  •  October 18, 2017   

California law enforcement may be ignoring Weinstein, clearly targeting pro-lifers

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UPDATE, Oct. 20: The Los Angeles Police Department announced Thursday it would be investigating claims from an Italian actress that she was assaulted by Harvey Weinstein. 

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (ChurchMilitant.com) - California's attorney general filed a host of criminal charges against a pair of pro-life activists in 2015. But it is unknown if the state of California is doing anything about sexual abuse allegations against Harvey Weinstein. 

Weinstein, a big-name Hollywood movie producer, has been surrounded by scandal for the past two weeks, owing to an avalanche of sex abuse accusations. Kickstarted by an October 5 New York Times exposé, about 40 women have come forward, claiming the Hollywood mogul sexually harassed them. The allegations span two decades. 

According to some reports, the New York Police Department and London Metropolitan Police are investigating separate assault allegations against Weinstein. However, there is no known complaint or investigation in the state of California. 

 

Church Militant reached out to California Attorney General Xavier Becerra, as well as the California Department of Justice (DOJ), for comment about the Weinstein scandal. We asked if there were any complaints or investigations they could speak about.

A spokesperson for the California DOJ wrote back. As is common with law enforcement agencies, they withheld any possible complaints and investigations from the public. The department's representative stated, "Pursuant to longstanding policy, we don't comment on whether or not we've received complaints or whether or not there is a potential investigation."

The statement ended by saying, "In general, any potential criminal investigation of matters such as this would most likely be addressed by local authorities." 

However, local law enforcement in Los Angeles does not seem to be investigating Weinstein. According to an L.A. Times report published Tuesday, "In Los Angeles, where Weinstein spent considerable time, neither the Los Angeles Police Department, Beverly Hills Police Department, L.A. County Sheriff's Department or the district attorney's office has any active cases involving Weinstein. However, they said they would look into any cases brought to their attention." 

In Los Angeles, where Weinstein spent considerable time, neither the Los Angeles Police Department, Beverly Hills Police Department, L.A. County Sheriff's Department or the district attorney's office has any active cases involving Weinstein. 

While it is unclear if the state of California will help deal out justice to Weinstein, Californian courts have certainly come down harshly on pro-life activist David Daleiden.

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David Daleiden (left) and Sandra Merritt (right)

Daleiden is president of the Center for Medical Progress (CMP), a pro-life organization, which produces undercover videos, exposing illegal and unethical conduct in the abortion industry.

In 2015, CMP undercover videos revealed that Planned Parenthood affiliates illegally harvest aborted babies' body parts and sell them to biomedical companies. The National Abortion Federation (NAF) filed a civil suit against the CMP in 2015, as some of the undercover footage was captured at a NAF annual business conference. 

CMP's baby body parts videos sent shockwaves through the United States. They helped spark a movement to defund Planned Parenthood and even provoked congressional hearings.

In December 2016, Congress submitted criminal referrals to the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), advising them to investigate several Planned Parenthood affiliates and biomedical corporations. In a June 19 memo found by Breitbart, the FBI confirmed receiving and reviewing the referrals. In late September, the FBI mentioned distributing this information to field teams but — per usual policy — could not answer whether or not they were investigating the abortion giant. 

In March, California Attorney General Xavier Becerra filed 15 felony charges against Daleiden and CMP affiliate Sandra Merritt. The attorney general is a self-professed Catholic but is radically pro-abortion and pro-homosexuality. Furthermore, the California DOJ website regularly sends out press releases about Becerra's various acts of opposition to President Trump on issues such as immigration and transgenders in the military.

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California Attorney General

Xavier Becerra

On June 21, Judge Christopher Hite of the San Francisco County Superior Court dismissed 14 of the 15 charges. But on June 28, Church Militant learned that Beccera intended to submit a revised set of accusations. 

In addition to the pending criminal trial, the CMP is still doing battle with the NAF's civil suit. The federal judge hearing the civil case, William Orrick III of the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals, put a temporary gag order on CMP videos in July 2015, and in August 2015 he extended it indefinitely. The gag order still stands today. 

In June this year, Daleiden and his attorneys petitioned to have Judge Orrick removed from the case, alleging conflict of interest. The judge was involved in a non-profit that partnered with Planned Parenthood. What's more, Orrick's wife, Caroline Farrow Orrick, is outspoken on social media about her pro-abortion radicalism. She reportedly called the CMP undercover videos "an act of domestic terrorism." 

The petition was to no effect. On August 31, Judge Orrick found Daleiden and his attorneys in contempt of court and ordered them to pay nearly $200,000 to the NAF. This ruling came after Daleiden and team published a compilation video in May which featured excerpts from the blocked videos. Daleiden's attorneys argued that the compilation video was publicized in an effort to find corroborative witnesses for the case. 

On August 3, Life Legal Defense Foundation petitioned the U.S. Supreme Court to review the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals ruling in National Abortion Federation v. Center for Medical Progress.

On September 7, a coalition of 20 state attorneys general appealed the gag order to the Supreme Court. They argued that the gag order "sets a precedent that hampers law enforcement's ability to effectively receive information and investigate possible civil or criminal wrongdoing." 

The exhausting years-long legal battle has cost the CMP over $1.4 million. In a live webcast on October 6, Daleiden and his attorneys, as well as other American pro-life leaders, spoke on camera about the grueling courtroom ordeal. The livestream also announced a fundraising campaign to cover CMP's anticipated legal fees. 

During the webinar, David Bereit, founder and former CEO of 40 Days for Life, commented on Daleiden's plight, "They're trying to bankrupt him or send him to a California penitentiary." 

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David Nussman

David Nussman is an intern with the News Department.