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Arnold & Porter Secures Monumental Victory for Planned Parenthood

December 11, 2019

Arnold & Porter recently obtained a resounding victory for Planned Parenthood on all claims in a case against activists that embarked on a years-long campaign to shut down Planned Parenthood. The jury of nine men and one woman awarded Planned Parenthood both compensatory and punitive damages totaling more than $2 million.

Arnold & Porter represented Planned Parenthood Federation of America and several of its affiliates since 2015 against activists whose stated goal was to "destroy" Planned Parenthood. The activists engaged in a complex, long-term effort that involved creating a front company that purportedly facilitated fetal tissue research in order to infiltrate Planned Parenthood conferences and health centers, and surreptitiously record Planned Parenthood doctors and staff. In July 2015, the activists began posting videos of these recordings over several months in a coordinated media campaign against Planned Parenthood. In January 2016, Arnold & Porter filed a complaint in the Northern District of California against those who had infiltrated Planned Parenthood's conferences and clinics or conspired to do so, alleging fraud, trespass, breach of contract, wiretapping, and RICO violations.

A six-week jury trial began on October 2, 2019, and the Arnold & Porter team was successfully able to demonstrate the defendants embarked on a quest to destroy Planned Parenthood that included a disregard for the law and the consequences to doctors and staff.

The Arnold & Porter team included partners Rhonda Trotter and Jeremy Kamras, senior counsel Sharon Mayo and Steven Mayer, senior associates Diana Sterk and Oscar Ramallo, staff attorney Meghan Martin, and associate Arielle Feldshon. Other team members included: Natalie Collard-McCoy, Cara D. Davis, Matthew Diton, Tommy Huynh, Sherry Jarons, Andrew Johnson, Stephanie Kang, Christine Lao-Scott, Jennifer Lord, Angela Pelletier, Paul W. Rodney, Bert Slonim, and John S. Throckmorton; and on appellate briefing, Avishai Don, John Robinson, and Elisabeth Theodore.