Featured Image
Joe BidenPhoto by Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images


CLEVELAND, Ohio (LifeSiteNews) — The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) under the Biden administration has announced a lawsuit against even more pro-lifers for supposed violations of the federal Freedom of Access to Clinic Entrances (FACE) Act, as sentencing continues for nine pro-life advocates convicted last fall of the same.

DOJ is seeking “compensatory damages, monetary penalties and injunctive relief” against the groups Citizens for a Pro Life Society and Red Rose Rescue, as well as against Laura Gies, Lauren Handy, Clara McDonald, Monica Miller, Christopher Moscinski, Jay Smith, and Audrey Whipple, allegedly for “engaging in physical obstruction” at two Ohio abortion centers, according to a press release.

READ: Elderly pro-lifer Jean Marshall sentenced to 24 months, denied home confinement despite health issues

“Obstructing people from accessing reproductive health care [abortion] and physically obstructing providers from offering it are unlawful,” said DOJ Civil Rights Division Assistant Attorney General Kristen Clarke, citing the FACE Act. “The Civil Rights Division is committed to enforcing federal law to protect the rights [sic] of those who seek and those who provide access to [abortion].” reports that the charges are based on two incidents, one in which pro-lifers entered Northeast Ohio Women’s Center in Cuyahoga Falls last June by falsely claiming to be patients, then began distributing roses to women in the waiting room and encouraging them to leave (five reportedly did so).

The next day, Miller and two others entered Planned Parenthood of Greater Ohio’s Bedford Heights Surgery Center’s fenced parking lot, where one member distributed literature inside the building and others spoke to patients outside. One member allegedly knelt in front of the center’s entrance and refused to move. Police reportedly requested that the Planned Parenthood close for the day, as they lacked the manpower to handle the situation.

The feds are seeking $20,516 for first violations and $30,868 for repeat offenses, bringing the potential damages in excess of $50,000.

READ: Pro-lifer Joan Andrews Bell sentenced to 27 months in DC FACE Act case

“Red Roses Rescues DO NOT violate the FACE Act,” Monica Miller, the head of Citizens for a Pro-Life Society, a group which has been involved in several Red Rose Rescues, responded in a statement to LifeSiteNews. “In an RRR pro-lifers never block anything or anyone – and if the Department of Justice is coming after us for our peaceful life-saving efforts it’s because they will simply play fast and loose with the FACE language having to do with ‘physical obstruction’ that prevents ‘freedom of movement.’” 

“There have been 37 RRRs. We have NEVER been charged with FACE, and indeed, the RRR we did at the PP in Bedford Heights, June 5, 2021, one of the two that involves this DOJ accusation, all charges were dropped!” she added. “We have every confidence that through our great attorneys we will prevail over this bogus attempt by the weaponized DOJ to drag even RRR under its persecution of those who seek to defend the unborn from violence!”

News of the new lawsuit follows a series of FACE Act convictions last fall against Handy, who is also named in the new case, and eight other pro-lifers in Washington, D.C.

READ: Jailed pro-lifer held in prolonged solitary confinement suffers stroke

As LifeSiteNews has extensively reported, the activists stood trial for blocking access to the scandal-plagued Washington Surgi-Clinic late-term abortion facility in downtown D.C., in a “traditional rescue” in October 2020. Pro-life “rescues,” of which there were many in the early days of the pro-life movement before the FACE Act became federal law, involve physically entering abortion centers and refusing to leave in an effort to convince women to choose life for their babies.

Washington Surgi-Clinic is also where five late-term aborted babies were discovered who may have either been killed by illegal partial-birth abortion procedures or after live-birth.

Sentencing began in May for the “D.C. Nine,” in which Handy was sentenced to four years in prison and the rest of the sentences so far have ranged from one year to 34 months. Pro-lifers criticize these and other prosecutions as forming a pattern of the pro-abortion Biden DOJ weaponizing the criminal justice system to crush its political enemies.

Since May 2022, when the U.S. Supreme Court’s intention to overturn Roe v. Wade was first leaked, “there have been at least 236 attacks on Catholic churches and at least 90 attacks on pro-life pregnancy centers,” the Daily Signal reports. Yet the DOJ “charged only pro-life activists with FACE Act violations in 2022, and has since charged only five individuals with violating the FACE Act by targeting pregnancy centers.” At the same time, it has zealously pursued incidents involving pro-lifers, from the D.C. defendants to Philadelphia sidewalk counselor and Catholic father of seven Mark Houck.

READ: Pro-life rescuers are very effective in saving lives despite the risk of jail: here’s why