US NRI woman gets 70-year sentence for foeticide

Purvi Patel, 33, of Indiana has been convicted by a jury of foeticide and neglect of a dependent, and sentenced to 70 years in prison. Patel a South Bend resident, found out she was pregnant in 2013 and had her premature delivery in July. She said she had a sudden miscarriage and when the foetus was born it did not seem to be moving or breathing. She tried to resuscitate the infant and when it did not respond she put the body in plastic bags and placed it in a dumpster behind a restaurant that her family owns. Soon after, faced with heavy vaginal bleeding, she went to a hospital for help where she denied at first that she had been pregnant and later admitting miscarriage claimed she did not know how far along she was in her pregnancy. When the foetus was found in the dumpster autopsy reports said it was 24 to 28 weeks old. After several pre-trials Patel was charged with foeticide and neglecting a dependent, and during her trial the prosecution claimed that the infant boy was alive and had taken a few breaths before being dumped. Patel was found guilty on both counts and faces 50 years in jail for neglect and 20 years for foeticide, a total of 70 years. In the US however, because of an intense battle between pro and anti abortion campaigners Purvi's case has drawn much attention, and reproductive activists in the US have been railing against the state for what they perceive as a woman being criminalised for choosing abortion.