WASHINGTON, May 13, 2002 ( – James Kopp, the pro-life activist charged with the 1998 murder of Buffalo abortionist Barnett Slepian, claims that he did not flee the United States because he was guilty, but because he feared that he might be killed, as he believes happened to Canadian pro-lifer Maurice Lewis, who died in September, 1997 under mysterious circumstances.  In a letter written to friends while he was in prison in France in 2001, Kopp claimed that he was innocent in the Slepian killing.  In response to questions as to why he fled, he wrote “The answer is a person, not a thing or an idea. The person is Maurice Lewis, R.I.P., who was poisoned in Canada in 1996, roughly.”  Lewis was a pro-life activist who had launched a challenge to British Columbia’s abortion “bubble zone” legislation.  When Lewis died, allegedly of accidental asphyxiation in the cab of his truck, his case died with him. Kopp was a friend of Lewis who had spent six weeks with him in an Italian prison after a rescue protest at a Rome abortion clinic.  In a seven part series for the on-line news service WorldNetDaily, journalist and film producer Jack Cashill reveals many inconsistencies in the FBI’s case against Kopp. Cashill based much of his work on a 108 page report last year by Texas pro-life group Life Dynamics International.  The evidence noted by Cashill and the Life Dynamics report includes:  —the lack of ballistics evidence linking the gun found at the crime scene to the shooting;—Kopp’s secure alibi placing him in Pennsylvania for the day the gun was purchased in Tennessee;—the FBI’s questioning of Kopp’s friends even before his name had been raised as a possible suspect;—the FBI’s dropping from its investigation two members of a violent leftist group who had been picked up at Slepian’s home the night after the shooting;—questions about the discovery of personal effects of Kopp’s at the site two weeks after the shooting, and the separate discovery of a high powered rifle some six months later. Kopp has told friends that he is innocent of any crime and looks forward to a trial before an American court to clear his name.  WorldNetDaily story: Life Dynamics Report