Planned Parenthood fires employee in controversial video

NEW YORK Wed Feb 2, 2011 1:32pm EST

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NEW YORK (Reuters) - A Planned Parenthood clinic manager has been fired for behavior captured on an undercover video made by an anti-abortion group, a Planned Parenthood spokesman said on Wednesday.

The video recorded at a central New Jersey clinic was made by Live Action, which says it shows Planned Parenthood trying to cover up sexual abuse and sex trafficking.

The footage, recorded January 13, shows the manager discussing abortion, sexually transmitted disease testing and contraception with people posing as a pimp and prostitute and coaching them to lie about their age and other information, according to Live Action.

The clinic manager was fired late on Tuesday, said Planned Parenthood spokesman Stuart Schear.

"The behavior we saw in the videotape was egregious and repugnant," he said, adding it was "completely inexplicable and inconsistent with what Planned Parenthood does."

Planned Parenthood said it notified authorities in New Jersey after the January 13 visit and contacted national authorities after similar unusual visits occurred in at least 12 centers in six states within one week.

Schear said the secret tapings were part of a large, coordinated national effort to take funding away from Planned Parenthood by creating controversy in the organization.

Earlier in January, Planned Parenthood said it alerted U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder to the string of health-center visitors in a number of states that indicated involvement in sex trafficking of minors.

Planned Parenthood said the FBI is reviewing evidence and photos.

Live Action said the video, released publicly on Tuesday, "proves beyond a shadow of a doubt that Planned Parenthood intentionally breaks state and federal laws and covers up the abuse of the young girls it claims to serve," said the group's president, Lila Rose.

(Reporting by Lauren Keiper; Editing by Ellen Wulfhorst and Jerry Norton)

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