Scientology on its way to Federal court

Posted August 13th, 2009

From Barry Van Sickle, the attorney in the cases of Marc Headley, Claire Headley, and Laura DeCrescenzo. Posted on on Wednesday, August 12th 2009.

Scientology moved to dismiss the complaints or strike most of the allegations. The Court issued its order in Marc’s case yesterday afternoon. A ruling is expected in Claire’s case soon.

The unfair business practice, minimum wage, and human trafficking claim under the federal statute survived the motion to dismiss. The court dismissed the human trafficking claim under california state law, and , in effect, denied the request for leave of court to amend the complaint to convert the state ‘representative action” into a federal class action.

I was not necessarily going to try to convert this to a class action but tried to keep the option open. Before getting in a dither about class actions, please consider that the statute of limitations may be running on numerous claims. The main reason I would file class action papers would be to toll the statute of limitations for the class of employees who left within the last 3-4 years.

The good news was that the court found that the 10 year statute of limitation on forced labor under federal law applied and had been met. The court made a preliminary finding that Marc could recover damages under the federal forced labor statute for his entire period of work.

I would not call this ‘epic” , but it is a necessary win. The lawyers in the case have moved on to discovery and Rule 26 compliance. Marc’s and Claire’s depositions are set for later this month, and we have a few moves in contemplation.

David Miscavige’s Scientology Organization will be proceeding to federal court to defend itself against the charges of unfair business practice, breaking minimum wage laws, and human trafficking.

UPDATE: Also from Van Sickle:

We have suggested that since David Miscavige and RTC are taking all of the credit for Scientology’s huge growth, they should be named as defendants in all cases and also sharing the blame for all of the laws broken and people hurt in the process. They have not agreed to that. It may be the subject of a motion soon. We have had several former high executives “volunteer” to help with that motion.

Who Is David Miscavige?
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