02:48 - Source: CNN
Grand jury indicts Planned Parenthood accusers

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"There is no chance that a conviction can be had on these indictments," attorney Terry Yates said

"We consider these two individuals to be modern day heroes whose work is making a difference all around the country," attorney Jared Woodfill said

Washington CNN —  

Attorneys for anti-abortion activists who were indicted in Texas this week after making secret videos to expose Planned Parenthood said Wednesday that the charges have “no chance” of ending in convictions, and asked the county district attorney to allow another grand jury to investigate the organization.

“The indictments issued are factually and legally insufficient. They are not going to hold up under the weight of the law,” criminal lawyer Terry Yates told reporters at a press conference in Bellaire, Texas, on Wednesday.

“There is no chance that a conviction can be had on these indictments,” he added.

Attorneys are asking Harris County District Attorney Devon Anderson not to proceed with the indictment and want Gov. Greg Abbott, Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick and Attorney General Ken Paxton to be able to move forward with their investigation of Planned Parenthood.

“When you have a grand jury that has acted out of bounds, you can clearly present the case to another grand jury,” attorney Jared Woodfill said.

He added that he was “hopeful” that Anderson will “do the right thing” and submit the charges to another grand jury.

A Texas investigation into Planned Parenthood, which provides health services and abortions, on Monday culminated in an indictment – of the organization’s accusers, the Center for Medical Progress. The group had released a series of secretly recorded videos over the summer that purported to show Planned Parenthood officials discussing the sale of fetal tissue, which is illegal.

Planned Parenthood maintains that it does not profit from the sale of fetal tissue and only recovers its cost. After the videos raised controversy, Planned Parenthood announced it would no longer accept reimbursement.

David Daleiden and Sandra Merritt were indicted for tampering with a governmental record, a second-degree felony, and Daleiden was also indicted on the count of prohibition of the purchase and sale of human organs, a class A misdemeanor, according to the Harris County district attorney.

The Harris County District Attorney’s office, meanwhile, announced that Planned Parenthood Gulf Coast had been cleared in the two-month-long investigation.

Attorneys for Daleiden and Merritt said the indictment came from “a runaway grand jury” acting contrary to the law.

“We consider these two individuals to be modern day heroes whose work is making a difference all around the country,” Woodfill said.