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Special prosecutor to handle charges against abortion doctor, official says

Special prosecutor to handle charges against abortion doctor, official says

Kansas' outgoing attorney general, a vocal abortion opponent, announced Wednesday he would appoint a special prosecutor to investigate a prominent abortion doctor he accused of performing illegal late-term abortions on patients ages 10 to 22.
Republican Attorney General Phill Kline, who lost the November election, made the announcement about two hours before a court hearing on whether his charges against Dr. George Tiller should be reinstated.
Kline charged Tiller with 30 misdemeanor counts last week, accusing him of performing 15 illegal late-term abortions in 2003 on patients ages 10 to 22 and not properly reporting details to state officials. Tiller's clinic is one of the few in the United States to perform late-term abortions
Sedgwick County District Judge Paul W. Clark dismissed the charges Friday over a jurisdictional issue, and Kline asked the judge to reconsider.
Even if Clark does not reinstate the criminal charges, Kline said he will ask the special prosecutor to move ahead with the investigation. Asked how the prosecutor would proceed, Kline replied: "There are numerous options."
Critics have argued that Kline let a personal agenda drive his decisions in the case. He had been investigating abortion providers, and earlier this year he won a two-year legal battle for access to the records of 90 clinic patients.
Tiller's clinic has been a high-profile target of abortion opponents. It was bombed in 1985, and Tiller was shot in both arms by a protester in 1993.
"This appointment of an independent special prosecutor will remove this investigation from a highly charged political process," Kline said Wednesday.
Kline leaves office in three weeks.


Updated : 2021-04-23 01:31 GMT+08:00