Today, a judge in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California granted the National Abortion Federation (NAF) a preliminary injunction prohibiting Biomax Procurement Services LLC, the Center for Medical Progress (CMP), David Daleiden, and Troy Newman from releasing recordings and materials they illegally obtained at NAF’s educational meetings. The court specifically held there was no evidence of criminal activity by NAF members on the 504 hours of tapes, as the defendants had repeatedly and misleadingly claimed throughout the case. The practical effect of the court’s order is that the temporary restraining order (TRO) it issued last July when NAF first filed suit is now extended through trial on the merits.
“There’s no denying that the fraudulent campaign launched by the defendants has put abortion providers at risk,” said Vicki Saporta, NAF President and CEO. “We are very grateful that the judge granted this preliminary injunction, which will help protect the safety and security of our members.”
Judge Orrick said in the order:
In rare circumstances, freedom of speech must be balanced against and give way to the protection of other compelling Constitutional rights, such as the First Amendment’s right to freedom of association, the Fifth and Fourteenth Amendments’ protection of liberty interests, and the right to privacy. After fully considering the record before me, I conclude that NAF has made such a showing here…
Critical to my decision are that the defendants agreed to injunctive relief if they breached the agreements and that, after the release of defendants’ first set of Human Capital Project videos and related information in July 2015, there has been a documented, dramatic increase in the volume and extent of threats to and harassment of NAF and its members…
It should be said that the majority of the recordings lack much public interest, and despite the misleading contentions of defendants, there is little that is new in the remainder of the recordings. Weighed against that public interest are NAF’s and its members’ legitimate interests in their rights to privacy, security, and association by maintaining the confidentiality of their presentations and conversations at NAF Annual Meetings. The balance is strongly in NAF’s favor.”
Derek Foran, Morrison & Foerster partner and litigation counsel for NAF, was pleased with the court’s ruling. “This is a great day, and a really important victory, for NAF and its members in the fight against radicals and extremists who would seek to do them harm,” he said.
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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Alissa Manzoeillo, National Abortion Federation
202.667.5881, ext 219; 202.595.4395 (after hours/cell)
The National Abortion Federation (NAF) is the professional association of abortion providers. Our members include individuals, private and non-profit clinics, Planned Parenthood affiliates, women’s health centers, physicians’ offices, and hospitals who together care for half the women who choose abortion in the U.S. and Canada each year. Our members also include public hospitals and both public and private clinics in Mexico City and private clinics in Colombia.