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US abortion doctor Kermit Gosnell found guilty of murder

Kermit Gosnell could face the death penalty after he was found guilty of three counts of murder in the deaths of babies born alive at his clinic.

Image: AP Photo/Philadelphia Daily News/Young Kim/File

A US DOCTOR accused of killing four babies born alive at his abortion clinic has been found guilty of three counts of murder.

Kermit Gosnell was also found guilty of the involuntary manslaughter of a patient who died at the clinic in 2009. He was acquitted in the death of a fourth baby.

The 72-year-old had been accused of carrying out illegal abortion procedures at the unsanitary Phildelphia clinic on pregnant women who were far beyond the US state’s 24-week limit.

Gosnell faced more than 250 counts in total, including four counts of first-degree murder against the babies allegedly born alive and then killed by Gosnell and his staff. The 72-year-old had been accused of snipping the spinal cord of babies born alive after abortions.

He also faced a charge of involuntary manslaughter over the death of a patient in 2009 who was allegedly given too much of a painkiller by the untrained staff in the clinic.

Gosnell also faced 227 counts of not adhering to the 24-hour waiting period before a woman is permitted to have an abortion at a clinic in the US state.

The Philadelphia Inquirer reports that Gosnell did not testify during his trial and did not present a single witness.

Earlier today the jury had said it was hung on two of the charges but it was not clear what the charges in question were.

Gosnell operated the Women’s Medical Society clinic in Philadelphia from 1979 until 2010 when it was closed after a raid by federal officials who were investigating whether illegal prescription drug activities were taking place at the clinic. Instead, according to information given to a grand jury, the agents found six heavily pregnant women waiting for Gosnell to perform abortions in the filthy clinic, the remains of aborted foetuses, dirty medical instruments and bloodstained furniture.

The jury is due to reconvene on 21 May to hear evidence on whether Gosnell should get the death penalty.

The Women’s Medical Society, the facility run by Kermit Gosnell in Philadelphia (AP Photo/Matt Rourke)

- Additional reporting by Associated Press

Previously: US doctor charged with killing seven babies >

Read: Obama won’t take position on Kermit Gosnell trial while it’s ongoing >

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