Texas Penal Code 48.03 – Prohibition of the Purchase and Sale of Human Fetal Tissue
WHAT IS PROHIBITION ON PURCHASE AND SALE OF HUMAN FETAL TISSUE IN TEXAS?
Texas law prohibits purchasing, selling, acquiring, offering to buy or sell, or otherwise transferring human fetal tissue.
WHAT IS THE PROHIBITION ON PURCHASE AND SALE OF HUMAN FETAL TISSUE LAW IN TEXAS?
Tex. Penal Code § 48.03. PROHIBITION ON PURCHASE AND SALE OF HUMAN FETAL TISSUE.
(b) A person commits an offense if the person knowingly offers to buy, offers to sell, acquires, receives, sells, or otherwise transfers any human fetal tissue for economic benefit.
(c) An offense under this section is a state jail felony.
(d) It is a defense to prosecution under this section that the actor:
(1) is an employee of or under contract with an accredited public or private institution of higher education; and
(2) acquires, receives, or transfers human fetal tissue solely for the purpose of fulfilling a donation authorized by Section 173.005, Health and Safety Code.
(e) This section does not apply to:
(1) human fetal tissue acquired, received, or transferred solely for diagnostic or pathological testing;
(2) human fetal tissue acquired, received, or transferred solely for the purposes of a criminal investigation;
(3) human fetal tissue acquired, received, or transferred solely for the purpose of disposing of the tissue in accordance with state law or rules applicable to the disposition of human fetal tissue remains;
(4) human fetal tissue or human tissue acquired during pregnancy or at delivery of a child, provided the tissue is acquired by an accredited public or private institution of higher education for use in research approved by an institutional review board or another appropriate board, committee, or body charged with oversight applicable to the research; or
(5) cell lines derived from human fetal tissue or human tissue existing on September 1, 2017, that are used by an accredited public or private institution of higher education in research approved by an institutional review board or another appropriate board, committee, or body charged with oversight applicable to the research.
(f) With the consent of the appropriate local county or district attorney, the attorney general has concurrent jurisdiction with that consenting local prosecutor to prosecute an offense under this section.
WHAT IS THE PENALTY CLASS FOR PROHIBITION ON PURCHASE AND SALE OF HUMAN FETAL TISSUE IN TEXAS?
Purchasing and selling human fetal tissue is a state jail felony, punishable by 180 days to two years in a state jail facility.
WHAT IS THE PUNISHMENT RANGE FOR PROHIBITION ON PURCHASE AND SALE OF HUMAN FETAL TISSUE IN TEXAS?
The punishment range for the purchase and sale of human fetal tissue, a state jail felony, is between 180 days and two years in a state jail facility, and a maximum $10,000 fine.
WHAT ARE THE PENALTIES FOR PROHIBITION ON PURCHASE AND SALE OF HUMAN FETAL TISSUE IN TEXAS?
A person charged with prohibited purchase and sale of human fetal tissue may be eligible for probation after a conviction, or deferred adjudication without a conviction, for a period between two and five years, with the possibility of extending supervision for up to ten years.
WHAT ARE THE DEFENSES TO PROHIBITION ON PURCHASE AND SALE OF HUMAN FETAL TISSUE IN TEXAS?
The statute does not authorize specific defenses to the prohibition on the purchase and sale of human fetal tissue, but it does contain a non-applicability provision.
The law does not apply to the transfer or acquisition of human fetal tissue: (1) for diagnostic or pathological testing; (2) during a criminal investigation; (3) in accordance with state and federal laws; (4) during pregnancy or at delivery of a child by an accredited institution for approved research; or (5) to be used for research, and was acquired prior to September of 2017.
WHAT IS THE STATUTE OF LIMITATIONS FOR PROHIBITION ON PURCHASE AND SALE OF HUMAN FETAL TISSUE IN TEXAS?
The limitation period for prohibited purchase and sale of human fetal tissue, a state jail felony, is three years.
PROHIBITION ON PURCHASE AND SALE OF HUMAN FETAL TISSUE IN TEXAS
The Texas Legislature enacts anti-abortion laws every session. In 2017, it passed the prohibition on the purchase and sale of human fetal tissue in an effort to prevent partial-birth abortions, and the illegal sale or purchase of fetal tissue thereafter.
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