In the United States, women have a constitutional right to undergo abortion. The United States Supreme Court upheld the right to abortion in Roe v. Wade as well as in a series of cases that followed. Abortion is considered to be a fundamental right that states cannot unduly interfere with.
However, this does not mean that the right to abortion is unlimited within the United States. In fact, there are restrictions on the circumstances under which an abortion can take place.
One of those restrictions comes in the form of a federal law that bans partial birth abortion.
If you are accused of violating this federal law, it is imperative that you understand what rights you have available to you and that you take swift action to protect yourself from accusations of wrongdoing. You could face harsh penalties and be tried for a crime that has tremendous political implications, which means your privacy and reputation could be damaged as a result of an accusation related to partial birth abortion.
LV Criminal Defense can help. Our federal criminal defense lawyers will work closely with you to try to resolve charges as quickly and effectively as possible while maximizing the chances of a favorable outcome.
We work hard to represent clients facing federal charges in Arizona, California, Nevada, Utah, Oregon, and surrounding states, and we have the knowledge and skill to help you get the best possible outcome out of your involvement with the criminal justice system. Give us a call today to find out more.
The federal penal code addresses the offense of partial birth abortion in 18 U.S. Code Chapter 74. There is a single statute within 18 U.S. Code Chapter 74 that defines when partial birth abortion is unlawful under federal law. That statute is found in 18 U.S. Code section 1531.
According to 18 U.S. Code section 1531, a physician who, in affecting interstate commerce or foreign commerce, knowingly performs a partial birth abortion and kills a human fetus as a result of performing a partial birth abortion, can be tried and convicted of a federal crime.
If a physician is prosecuted for partial birth abortion under 18 U.S. Code section 1531 and is convicted of committing this offense, the doctor could face a maximum penalty of up to two years of imprisonment. The doctor who performed the partial birth abortion in violation of the law could also be fined as part of the criminal penalty.
18 U.S. Code Chapter section 1531 defines very clearly exactly what a partial birth abortion is. A partial birth abortion occurs only in circumstances where a person who performs an abortion deliberately and intentionally delivers a living fetus through the vagina until the entire fetal head is outside of the mother in situations where the baby prevents head-first. If the fetus is breach, then a partial birth abortion occurs only in circumstances where a doctor performing an abortion deliberately and intentionally delivers a living fetus through the vagina until part of the fetal trunk passed the navel is outside of the body of the mother.
A partial birth abortion occurs only upon delivering the baby until its head or trunk is out of the mother if the doctor’s purpose in delivering the child is to perform an overt act that the doctor knows will cause the death of the partially delivered living fetus. A partial birth abortion can also occur if the doctor delivering the fetus performs an overt act, other than completing delivery of the fetus, that kills the partially delivered child.
In other words, the law stipulates that doctors are prohibited under federal law from partially delivering a child for purposes of causing the death of the child.
Physician is also defined by 18 U.S. Code Chapter 1531 to include any doctor of medicine or doctor of osteopathy who is legally authorized to practice medicine and surgery in the state where the partial birth abortion is unlawfully provided. The statute also applies to any other individual who has been legally authorized by the state to perform an abortion, as well as to individuals who do not have authorization but who perform prohibited partial birth abortions anyway.
However, the law also makes clear that a physician or other person who performs a prohibited act under 18 U.S. Code section 74 will not be convicted if the physician is acting to save the life of the mother who is experiencing a physical illness or physical injury including life-endangering conditions the pregnancy is causing.
LV Criminal Defense will assist those accused of violating laws against partial birth abortion to understand the specifics of what a prosecutor would need to show to get a conviction.
Many federal criminal defense lawyers do not have the knowledge of 18 U.S. Code Chapter 74 that is necessary to represent defendants accused of violating laws related to partial birth abortions. Because this is a sensitive issue, it is important you have a compassionate attorney who knows the law well and who can help you to develop the best strategic legal approach to responding to charges. This means you need to carefully consider who should represent you and fight for your future.
The firm that you should turn to for help is LV Criminal Defense if you live in California, Arizona, Oregon, Nevada, Utah, or surrounding areas. Our compassionate and knowledgeable legal team understand the laws in in 18 U.S. Code section 1531 related to partial birth abortion and we can provide the advocacy you need to negotiate a plea agreement or fight for acquittal in court.
In every circumstance, we work to protect your reputation and future by helping you to get the best outcome possible as quickly as possible. To find out more about the assistance we offer as you respond to federal charges related to partial birth abortion, give us a call today.