Abortionist Pleads No Contest to Felonies, Faces up to 10 Years in Jail
LOS ANGELES, December 2, 2008 (LifeSiteNews.com) - Instead of proceeding with a scheduled jury selection, Bertha Pinedo Bugarin, 47, pleaded no contest yesterday to seven felony charges of committing abortions without a medical license. She was ordered to pay restitution of $7,800 to 16 of her victims.
Nine additional counts are to be dismissed, according to her plea bargain agreement, when she is sentenced in January. She faces up to 10 years in jail.
Bugarin’s sister, Raquel, was also charged, but earlier took a plea bargain that would have made her testify against her sister if a trial would have proceeded.
"We are praying that Ms. Bugarin goes to jail for a very long time," said Operation Rescue President Troy Newman, who for years has focused attention on exposing Bugarin’s chain of seedy abortion mills that once blanketed Southern California.
"Bugarin is a cold-hearted predator who sought out human misery in order to profit from it. She showed no remorse or sorrow for the women she preyed upon. She has shown only contempt for the law," said Newman. "The only way to protect women from further exploitation at Bugarin’s hands is to put her in jail, or, mark my words, she’ll be back at it again."
Bugarin also faces 10 felonies and one misdemeanor in San Diego County that could net her nine additional years in jail.
Bugarin once ran eleven abortion mills in Southern California, with a stable of troubled abortionists that, one by one, lost their medical licenses. Most of her clinics have closed, and phone calls made Monday to her offices in Panorama City, Santa Ana, and Los Angeles referred the caller to a number that has been disconnected.
"Let’s not make the mistake of thinking that Bugarin’s crimes are an anomaly," said Newman. "She was just unfortunate enough to get caught. In reality, illegal practices take place every day at our nation’s abortion mills. We haven’t met an abortionist yet that did not think he or she was above the law. In this case, we are grateful for the prosecution of Bugarin, but saddened that it took so many years - and so many broken lives - to bring her to justice."