DOJ indicts 2 more activists for targeting Florida pregnancy centers

The Department of Justice (DOJ) on Wednesday indicted two more abortion activists for allegedly targeting several pro-life pregnancy resource centers in Florida.

A federal grand jury for the Intermediate District of Florida returned a superseding indictment, charging Gabriella Oropesa and Annarella Rivera, as well as Caleb Freestone and Amber Smith-Stewart, with engaging in a “conspiracy to prevent employees reproductive health service facilities to provide these services.” The DOJ charged Freestone, 27, and Amber Smith Stewart, 23, in January 2023.

“As part of the conspiracy, the defendants allegedly targeted pregnancy resource facilities and vandalized those facilities with spray-painted threats. Some of the co-conspirators are said to have spray-painted threats, including “If abortions are not sure that neither (sic) are you, ”YOUR TIME IS OVER!!, ”WE’RE COMING for you,” and ”We are everywhere,” at a reproductive health services facility in Winter Haven, Florida,” according to the DOJ. “Facilities in Hollywood, Florida and Hialeah, Florida were also reportedly targeted.”

The Winter Haven facility in Polk County was vandalized in June after the Supreme Court overturned its 1973 ruling Roe vs. Wade decision. The Ledger reported at the time that the attack was claimed by “Jane’s Revenge,” an extremist pro-abortion group that claimed responsibility for attacks on pro-life pregnancy centers and churches across the country. Freestone and Amber Smith Stewart have been linked to Antifa.

The superseding indictment alleges that Rivera, along with Freestone and Smith-Stewart, violated the FACE law “by using threats of force to intimidate” the pro-life Winter Haven pregnancy center, according to the DOJ. The indictment also alleges that Rivera, along with Freestone and Smith-Stewart, violated this FACE law by intentionally damaging and destroying facility property because the facility provides “reproductive health services.”

Rivera, Freestone and Smith-Stewart each face up to 12 years in prison, three years of probation and fines of up to $350,000 if convicted. Oropesa faces up to a maximum of ten years in prison, three years of probation and a fine of up to $250,000.

Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody this week announced a lawsuit against Freestone and Smith-Stewart, saying “Antifa and Jane’s Revenge are criminal organizations and must answer for their crimes in Florida.”

“I am taking action to hold their members accountable for attempting to intimidate and threaten law-abiding citizens in our state,” Moody said in a statement.

Moody’s lawsuit accuses Freestone and Smith-Stewart of violating the FACE Act, which ssubjects to civil and criminal penalties anyone who “by force or threat of force… intentionally… intimidates or embarrasses or attempts to… intimidate or embarrass any person because that person provides or has provided reproductive health services”.

The First Liberty Institute has also sued for damages on behalf of one of the clinics allegedly targeted.

After the Dobbs the decision was disclosed but before deer was cancelled, Jane’s Revenge writing an open letter to pro-life centers across the country threatening acts of domestic terrorism. In the letter, the radical group took ownership of the acts of violence and vandalism at pregnancy centers across the country and promised to step up its tactics if pro-lifers continue their operations as usual. The group said:

Your 30 days expired yesterday. We offered an honorable way out. You could have left. Now the leash is off. And we will make it as difficult as possible for you to continue your campaign of oppression. We’ve demonstrated over the past month how easy and fun it is to attack. We are versatile, we are mercurial and we answer only to ourselves.

Promising to take “increasingly drastic measures” without giving details, the group said it would attack these centers both openly and covertly until insurance companies and funders “realize that you are a bad investment”.

Since flee of the Dobbs draft decision in May 2022, at least 83 pro-life pregnancy centers and 144 Catholic churches were attacked, vandalized or burned down, according to an attack tracker maintained by CatholicVote. During a hearing before the Senate Homeland Security Committee in November 2022, FBI Director Christopher Wray admitted that approximately 70% of threats of abortion-related violence in the United States since Dobbs decision were against pro-life groups.

Related: Surveillance Video: Arsonists Throw Molotov Cocktails at Pro-Life Clinic

Buffalo FBI via Storyful


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