The biomedical company StemExpress has dropped its lawsuit against the Center for Medical Progress, according to a statement from the center Wednesday.
StemExpress, a former Planned Parenthood business partner, faced questions about the financial nature of its relationship with the nation’s largest abortion provider after the Center for Medical Progress released a series of undercover videos alleging that Planned Parenthood was profiting from the sale of aborted fetal body parts.
Both companies claimed the videos were deceptively edited and denied wrongdoing.
In 2015, the Center for Medical Progress released an undercover video of a meeting with Cate Dyer, CEO of StemExpress, in which she said she wanted “another 50 livers a week” and appeared to concur with an actor’s statement that their partnership with abortion clinics should be financially beneficial for both sides.
Profiting from the sale of human body parts — including those of the unborn — is illegal in the United States.
In the aftermath of the video’s release, StemExpress severed its ties with Planned Parenthood and sued the Center for Medical Progress.
Lawmakers on the House Select Panel on Infant Lives recently voted to hold StemExpress in contempt of Congress for allegedly failing to fully comply with a congressional subpoena.
David Daleiden, the founder of the Center for Medical Progress, said in a statement that the end of the lawsuit is a “victory for free speech and citizen journalism”:
StemExpress was the first of Planned Parenthood’s accomplices to file a retaliatory lawsuit against citizen journalists and the first to seek an unconstitutional prior restraint on our First Amendment rights to speak and publish. Now, the video is out for all the world to see, StemExpress faces criminal referral in multiple jurisdictions, and they are walking away from their own lawsuit empty-handed.
Daleiden went on to thank his legal representation in the case by Chuck LiMandri at the Freedom of Conscience Defense Fund and Katie Short at Life Legal Defense Foundation.
“StemExpress’ surrender sends an unmistakable message to Planned Parenthood, the National Abortion Federation, and all their political cronies who would dare to attack the First Amendment to cover up their crimes,” Daleiden said.
In a press release, the Freedom of Conscience Defense Fund said StemExpress abruptly dropped the suit the day before a pivotal hearing in the case.
LiMandri, the president of the Freedom of Conscience Defense Fund, said in a statement that he hopes the dismissal will lead Planned Parenthood to reconsider their own lawsuit against Daleiden and the Center for Medical Progress.
Alexandra Snyder, executive director of the Life Legal Defense Foundation, said in a statement, "Life Legal is thrilled that StemExpress has dropped its meritless lawsuit.”
"We have always maintained that the allegations raised in the lawsuit were baseless and that the suit was only filed to punish David Daleiden for exposing the truth about the StemExpress' role in the illegal trafficking of fetal body parts," Snyder said.
A spokesperson for StemExpress did not immediately return TheBlaze’s request for comment.