Anti-Abortion Extremists Indicted for Helping Kopp
Loretta Marra and Dennis Malvasi were indicted on charges yesterday that they helped James Kopp, who recently confessed to the sniper-style killing of a Buffalo gynecologist/obstetrician and abortion provider, while he was on the run from the law for more than two years. The couple was indicted on charges of harboring a known fugitive, conspiracy to harbor a known fugitive and conspiracy to possess false identification – charges that could add up to 13 years in prison for each. The indictment alleges that Marra and Malvasi provided money, advice and support to Kopp, according to the Associated Press.
Marra’s attorney, Bruce Barket said that the couple was prepared to plead guilty if the US Attorney’s Office agreed to offer another plea deal. Prosecutors refused to comment yesterday on their strategy, according to the AP.
Prosecutors in Buffalo originally offered Marra and Malvasi a plea deal in order to avoid a trial and ensure that Kopp’s murder trial would not be tainted. However, this plea deal was rejected twice by Buffalo district judge Richard Arcara. The case was then moved to a court in New York City.
It is unclear at this time how Kopp’s recent admission of guilt in the murder of Dr. Slepian will affect the trial of his accomplices. “With Kopp’s confession,” stated Eleanor Smeal, Feminist Majority Foundation president, “Marra and Malvasi certainly should not now receive a plea deal from the federal authorities and should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law to help shut down this terrorist network.”
Media Resources: Associated Press 12/9/02; Kaiser Daily Reproductive Health Report 12/10/02; Feminist Daily News 11/25/02
8/28/2015 Alaska Court Protects Abortion Access for Low-Income Women - The Alaska Superior Court struck down a state law yesterday that would have severely limited abortion access for low-income women in Alaska.
The state's Superior Court also struck down a Department of Health and Social Services regulation that placed narrow specifications on Medicaid coverage for abortions, requiring that Medicaid-funded abortions be determined by a physician to be "medically necessary." Last year, the Center for Reproductive Rights, the American Civil Liberties Union, and Planned Parenthood sued on behalf of the Planned Parenthood of the Great Northwest, claiming that the narrow definition of "medically necessary" arbitrarily established conditions designed to restrict the ability of low-income women to access abortion services.
The law was temporarily blocked last July by an Alaskan state court judge.
Superior Court Judge John Suddock ordered yesterday that the state be blocked from implementing this regulation, ruling that it placed an undue burden on low-income women seeking abortion services in Alaska.
"By providing health care to all poor Alaskans except women who need abortions, the challenged regulation violates the state constitutional guarantee of 'equal rights, opportunities, and protection under the law'," the ruling read.
"We applaud the superior court for striing down these cruel restrictions on women's health and rights that violate the Alaska Constitution," said Chris Charbonneau, CEO of Planned Parenthood of the Great Northwest and the Hawaiian Islands. . . .
8/26/2015 Saudi Women Prepare to Vote for the First Time - The fight for gender equality is making slow but notable progress in Saudi Arabia, where women will be allowed to vote for the first time in upcoming December elections.
This shift in Saudi law came in 2011, when a royal decree announced that women would be allowed to vote and run in local elections beginning in December of 2015. . . .