Kan. A.G. gets abortion records

Nov. 2, 2006 at 8:00 PM

TOPEKA, Kan., Nov. 2 (UPI) -- Critics of Kansas Attorney General Phil Kline say he announced that he has gained access to abortion clinic records to bolster his bid for re-election.

Kline's staff is expected to spend weeks or months reviewing the records to determine if two clinics performed illegal late-term abortions, or hushed up cases in which patients were victims of child rape, the Kansas City Star reported.

"This has always been part of his political agenda, rather than good-faith criminal prosecution," said Lee Thompson, lawyer for a Wichita clinic that is one of Kline's targets. "Why did he wait a week before the election?"

Gaining access to the records involved a two-year legal battle. The clinics accused Kline of carrying out a politically motivated fishing expedition that would invade patient privacy.

A judge finally allowed Kline to review records that would be edited to shield the identities of patients.

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