Archive Message - 1995

Since some of the materials which describe the $cientology cult could be considered to be copywritten materials, I have censored myself and The Skeptic Tank by deleting any and all possible text files which describes the cult's hidden mythologies. I have elected to quote just a bit of the questionable text according to the "Fair Use" legal findings afforded to those who report. - Fredric L. Rice, The Skeptic Tank, 09/Sep/95 -=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=- From!!!cultxpt Mon Jul 10 17:03:04 1995 Path:!!!cultxpt From: (Jeff Jacobsen) Newsgroups: alt.religion.scientology Subject: apparent precedent-setting case Date: 8 Jul 1995 22:45:16 GMT Organization: Primenet (602)395-1010 Lines: 74 Message-ID: <3tn1pt$> NNTP-Posting-Host: X-Newsreader: TIN [version 1.2 PL2] from Los Angeles Daily Journal, June 17, 1976 "Scientology Church loses appeal; malicious prosecution affirmed" [begin quote] The C.A. 2nd has affirmed a trial court award of $50,000 compensatory damages to plaintiff, a former member of the church of Scientology, for malicious prosecution by the church, and has modified a punitive damage award of $250,000 to $50,000. Viewed in the light most favorable to the verdict, the facts show that the plaintiff-respondent became a member of the church in March of 1959. He signed a billion-year contract agreeing to do anything to help Scientology and to help clear the planet of "reactive people." He became director of disbursements and "flag banking officer" for the church. Only the plaintiff and his superior, Boughton, knew the combination to the safe kept in respondent's office. A few months later the plaintiff told Boughton and others that he wanted to leave the church. He was instructed to write the founder, L. Ron Hubbard, to obtain permission to leave, and he was warned that if he left without permission, he would be subject to the church's "Fair Game" Policy, which encouraged adherents to persecute dissidents by any means. Church policy statements allowed Scientologists to trick, sue, lie to, or destroy "enemies." Plaintiff wrote to Hubbard and received no reply. He subsequently took documents from the safe and flew to Kansas City, where he turned them over to the Internal Revenue Service. Later he was arrested in Florida on a charge of grand theft. Boughton had called the Los Angeles Police Department to report $23,000 in missing Swiss francs. Plaintiff waived extradition and spent three weeks in jail. The charge was eventually dismissed in the interest of justice. Plaintiff then sued the church for malicious prosecution. The church appealed the verdict in favor of the plaintiff on several grounds. It was contended that admission of evidence of the church's doctrine and practices (such as the Fair Game Policy) were irrelevant, unduly prejudicial and violative of defendant's free exercise of religion. The appellate court ruled that such evidence was probative of credibility, a central issue to the case, and was therefore properly admitted. The court stated, "a party whose reprehensible acts are the cause of harm to another cannot be heard to complain that its conduct is so bad that it should not be disclosed" because of prejudice. Another contention was that the church never authorized or ratified the malicious prosecution and therefore should not be liable for punitive damages. The C.A. disagreed on the grounds that the founder of the church promoted the official Fair Game Policy, that no evidence was offered of its repudiation, and the persons to whom plaintiff had communicated his desire to leave were important managerial employees of the church. The only aspect of the verdict to be modified was the size of the punitive damage award, which was reduced from $250,000 to $50,000. The appellate court considered the disparity between the compensatory and punitive awards as indicating the jury had acted more out of passion and animosity than out of a determination of the amount necessary to deter the defendant from similar conduct in the future. Accordingly, the award was reduced to a more "reasonable" amount. Allard v. Church of Scientology of California, C.A. 2nd, 2 Civ. 45562, May 18, 1976, per Beach, J. Gerald E. Agnew, Jr., Charles B. O'Reilly and Morgan, Wenzel & McNicholas for respondent; Michael B. Lawler, Tobias C. Tolzmann, Joel Kreiner, Murchison, Cumming, Baker & Velpman, for appellant. (pjf) [end quote] If this case was not overturned it is indeed a helpful, precedent setting case for all us critics to be aware of for many reasons. -- ////// "It's like, a.r.s. is a GREAT BIG SUPER-SMART BRAIN, and Co$ confusion and disinformation tech is a leettle-bitty theety-wheety brain." (Daniel Davidson) /users/c/cultxpt


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