The U.S. Supreme Court has rejected an appeal against a lower court order blocking pro-life activists from releasing undercover videos that purportedly show Planned Parenthood officials engaging in illegal baby body parts trade.
The videos in question were recorded by The Center for Medical Progress (CMP) during the 2014 and 2015 annual meetings of the National Abortion Federation (NAF).
Later that year, the NAF sued CMP alleging that the videos were illegally recorded, adding that the pro-life advocates had infiltrated the meetings by posing as buyers of fetal tissue.
In 2016, U.S. District Judge William Orrick in San Francisco blocked the CMP from releasing videos recorded at the conference, claiming that the recordings did not contain any evidence of wrongdoing on the part of Planned Parenthood or the NAF.
The judge dismissed the arguments that the pro-life activists were acting as "citizen journalists" when they were recording the videos.
Last year, a three-judge panel at the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals upheld an injunction preventing the release of additional footage from the undercover investigations.
CMP board member Troy Newman, one of the defendants in the case, argued at the time that the injunction had prevented them from releasing incriminating evidence to law enforcement agencies.
In one of the videos released by CMP, an abortionist was heard talking about a biomedical company asking her about the availability of body parts such as limbs and livers.
"I get a lot of 'oohs' and aahs' from Stemex(press) you know, they're wanting livers. Last week I was in Sacramento and she said, 'I need four intact limbs' and I said 'you want what?'" said Leslie Drummond of Planned Parenthood Mar Monte, as reported by World Net Daily.
The videos had been cited in investigations conducted by House and Senate Panels that later referred Planned Parenthood affiliates to the Justice Department for criminal investigation and prosecution.
NAF President Vicki Saporta argued that the undercover videos have put the lives of abortion clinic workers in danger.
"We are grateful that the Supreme Court denied the defendants' latest attempt to circumvent the very necessary security precautions NAF has in place," Saporta said, according to Reuters.
In a statement released on Monday, Newman said that he and his fellow pro-life activists will continue to challenge the injunction in court.
"We pray that one day the full truth will come out, and those who have committed crimes will be held accountable in a court of law," he said, as reported by The Christian Post.