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Arrests are made during the rescue at Washington Surgi-Clinic on October 22, 2020DC Area Anti-Abortion Advocacy / Facebook

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WASHINGTON, D.C. (LifeSiteNews) – Five Republican members of Congress are seeking answers from the Biden Department of Justice regarding the disproportionate and suspiciously-timed prosecution of nine pro-life activists for blocking the entrance to a D.C. abortion center in October 2020.

Last month, federal law enforcement arrested the activists, who blocked the entrance as part of an effort to offer help to families seeking abortion, counsel them to change their minds, pray with them, and inform them about local resource centers. The Biden DOJ alleges that they “engaged in a conspiracy to create a blockade at the reproductive health care clinic to prevent the clinic from providing, and patients from receiving, reproductive health services” when they “forcefully entered the clinic and set about blockading two clinic doors using their bodies, furniture, chains, and ropes.” 

The pro-lifers face up to 11 years in prison, three years of supervised release, and a fine of up to $350,000. 

The organizer of the rescue, Lauren Handy, was later arrested when the police received a tip leading to the discovery of the bodies of five aborted babies in her home, which quickly became a subject of rampant online speculation. Handy and fellow pro-lifer Terrisa Bukovinac say they obtained a box containing the bodies from an anonymous truck driver who was allegedly loading boxes from the Washington Surgi Clinic abortion facility to transport them to the Curtis Bay Medical Waste incineration facility. The pro-lifers brought the aborted babies back to Handy’s apartment in order to give them a humane burial and funeral.

“Their late gestational ages as well as their apparent sustained injuries potentially show violations of the Partial Birth Abortion Act as well as the Born Alive Infants Protection Act which are federal crimes,” says the group Progressive Anti-Abortion Uprising (PAAU), for which Handy is activism director. 69 Republican lawmakers have called on the FBI and Justice Department to investigate.

Now, in an April 22 letter to U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland, Republican Reps. Paul Gosar, Ralph Norman, Mary Miller, Randy Weber, and Jeff Duncan have protested that “[t]hese non-violent advocates for the protection of life against murder are now being treated worse than violent felons…What is normally treated as a nuisance trespass is instead being treated as a decade long felony for these protesters.”

“This indictment and prosecution are abusive, unequal, and punitive,” they argue. “While the charge of trespass or clinic obstruction fits the facts, conspiracy against rights is unique and inappropriate for the conduct.”

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The Surgi-Center, a Washington, D.C. abortion clinic infamous for offering late, second trimester abortions, and its owner, abortionist Cesare Santangelo, are at the center of a scandal involving possible violations of federal laws against partial-birth abortion and infanticide.

In an exclusive video interview with LifeSiteNews, Lauren Handy, the director of activism at Progressive Anti-Abortion Uprising (PAAU), told LifeSiteNew's Editor-in-Chief, John-Henry Westen that, with the help of a whistleblower, her organization rescued and properly buried the remains of about one hundred aborted babies from Santangelo's Surgi-Center.

But, five of the deceased babies were so large and so developed that they suspected the Surgi-Center of engaging in the illegal practices of partial-birth abortion or infanticide (i.e., killing the child after birth) à la Kermit Gosnell.

The shocked pro-lifers then gave the aborted babies to the police and brought the matter to the attention of the D.C. Medical Examiner's office. But, the Medical Examiner's office has refused to take any action, saying they will not perform autopsies on the babies.

Please SIGN and SHARE this urgent petition to the Department of Justice, asking them to launch an investigation into alleged violations of federal law by Santangelo and the D.C. Surgi-Center, under either the Partial Birth Abortion Act (2003) or the Born-Alive Infants Protection Act (2002). *Anyone - no matter where you reside - can sign this petition!

Unfortunately, the story doesn't end there.

Handy and eight of her fellow pro-life rescuers in PAAU are, themselves, now facing jail-time after being arrested by the FBI for conducting a traditional pro-life sit-in in October, 2020, at the very same abortion center from which the late-term deceased babies (mentioned above) were rescued.

Please note that the two events - the pro-life rescue in 2020 and the gruesome discovery of the five near-to-full-term babies in the Surgi-Center's "bio-medical waste" earlier this year - are almost one-and-a-half years apart.

Thus, Handy believes that their recent arrest is no coincidence...and, moreover, that the FBI is being used to create a smokescreen by arresting her and the other pro-lifers.

At the same time, the D.C. Medical Examiner's office does not seem interested in discovering the truth about the deaths of the five aborted babies and possible illegal partial-birth abortions or infanticide happening at the D.C. Surgi-Center.

Please SIGN and SHARE this urgent petition to the Department of Justice, asking them to launch an investigation into alleged violations of federal law by Santangelo and the D.C. Surgi-Center, under either the Partial Birth Abortion Act (2003) or the Born-Alive Infants Protection Act (2002).

The DOJ press release claims that the pro-lifers: "engaged in a conspiracy to create a blockade at the reproductive health care clinic to prevent the clinic from providing, and patients from receiving, reproductive health services."

But, commenting on the arrest, Lauren Handy stated: "Media reports have stated that we ‘invaded’ the abortion center and ‘disrupted’ women from exercising their ‘reproductive rights’. No, that is not what we did."

"We entered the clinic and sought to love the women who were already there for their abortion procedures," Handy said. "We tried to offer them help so they would choose life. We non-violently defended the unborn who were about to be exterminated – the innocent, the most vulnerable, killed in horrific acts of violence and treated as so much trash."

Tireless pro-life activist Dr. Monica Miller, the director of Citizens for a Pro-Life Society and leader of Red Rose Rescue, told LifeSiteNews that "this is the first time any of them are facing federal charges. That the rescuers were hunted down by FBI agents is unprecedented in the history of pro-life activism."

All of this...possibly...for discovering five near-or-at-term aborted babies at Cesare Santangelo's D.C. Surgi-Center, and for seeking to give justice and dignity to the murdered babies.

The truth now needs to come out!

Please SIGN and SHARE this urgent petition to the Department of Justice, asking them to launch an investigation into alleged violations of federal law by Santangelo and the D.C. Surgi-Center, under either the Partial Birth Abortion Act (2003) or the Born-Alive Infants Protection Act (2002).

Thank you for SIGNING and SHARING this urgent petition!

To contribute to the legal defense of Lauren Handy and the other eight members of PAAU, please CLICK on the following link to find out more about their LifeFunder campaign (also operated by LifeSiteNews): https://www.lifefunder.com/victims

Thank you!

FOR MORE INFORMATION:

'EXCLUSIVE VIDEO: Pro-life hero raided by FBI speaks about the aborted babies she was trying to honor' - https://rumble.com/vzsslx-exclusive-pro-life-hero-raided-by-fbi-speaks-about-the-aborted-babies-she-w.html

'Pro-lifers arrested in FBI raids, face 11 years in prison for blocking access to late-term abortion mill' - https://www.lifesitenews.com/news/pro-lifers-raided-charged-and-face-11-years-in-jail-for-blocking-access-to-infamous-dc-abortion-mill/

'BREAKING: Video surfaces of FBI raid, arrest of nonviolent pro-life activists' - https://www.lifesitenews.com/news/breaking-video-surfaces-of-biden-fbi-raid-arrest-of-nonviolent-pro-life-activists/

'Court Docs reveal previously unknown patient death due to negligence at late-term abortion facility' - https://www.operationrescue.org/archives/court-docs-reveal-previously-unknown-patient-death-due-to-negligence-at-late-term-abortion-facility/

**Photo Credit: YouTube screenshot of pro-lifers protesting outside the Surgi-Center abortion facility, in Washington, D.C.

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The lawmakers note that under President Joe Biden, the Justice Department “has a disturbing history of overcharging people with political beliefs contrary to those in office,” citing the pending prosecutions of nonviolent Americans charged with trespassing for entering the U.S. Capitol during the January 6 riot of 2021, contrasted with the relative lack of federal prosecutions for participants of the Black Lives Matter riots of the previous summer.

“The conspiracy against rights charge is especially egregious. It is reserved for two people who conspire to ‘oppress, threaten, or intimidate’ a person in the ‘free exercise’ of their constitutional rights,” but “[a]bortion is not a right in the Constitution,” the Republicans noted. “The Supreme Court in Roe acknowledged as much, which is why that decision has been on life support ever since. Life is the first sacred and unalienable right named in the Declaration of Independence. Charging someone for protecting our first right named in the Declaration for violating a made-up right not in the Constitution is absurd. A right to kill cannot exist.”

“The timing of this arrest indicates a pre-meditated intent to distract from a grotesque incident uncovered by one of the defendants,” they went on. “Five dead babies were found in possession of this particular defendant, with evidence to suggest they had been killed by an abortionist in the Washington Surgi-Clinic in violation of federal law either after birth or during a partial birth abortion procedure.”

The letter closes by asking the Justice Department to answer several questions, including why it waited for more than a year to indict the pro-lifers, whether the timing of the rest was dependent on knowledge of the tip the defendants sent to D.C. police, and how many times the Department has charged conspiracy of rights violations or violations of the federal Freedom of Access to Clinic Entrances (FACE) Act of 1994.

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