Planned Parenthood cleared by Texas jury over videos, activists indicted

Reuters News
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Posted: Jan 25, 2016 5:46 PM

AUSTIN, Texas (Reuters) - A Texas grand jury has indicted two anti-abortion activists in a case involving covert videos on fetal tissue procurement talks with Planned Parenthood and found there was no wrongdoing on the part of the health group, a district attorney said on Monday.

"After a lengthy and thorough investigation by the Harris County District Attorney’s Office, the Texas Rangers, and the Houston Police Department, a Harris County grand jury took no action Monday against Planned Parenthood Gulf Coast," the Harris County District Attorney's office said in a statement.

The grand jury decision was a result of a probe launched last year under Texas Governor Greg Abbott who accused Planned Parenthood of the "gruesome harvesting of baby body parts."

No evidence was provided by Texas to back the claim. Planned Parenthood has denied the accusation and called the probe politically motivated.

David Daleiden and Sandra Merritt have both been indicted by the grand jury for tampering with a governmental record, said prosecutors for the county in which Houston is located.

The two were involved in covert videos last year in which a discussion was held with a Planned Parenthood official on the procurement of fetal tissue.

(Reporting by Jon Herskovitz; Editing by Matthew Lewis)