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RICO Act, Proposed Class Action against the Church - it is filed


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4 minutes ago, Duncan said:

I'm seeing a bunch of photos of Joseph Smith, the Hill Cumorah and some toy thing, is that what we're supposed to see?

Looks to be some sort of PowerPoint thing, but I don’t have the ambition to wade through it. Perhaps provoman could be prevailed upon to summarize it. 

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At the bottom is the proposed class action paper. I can’t cut and paste from it and haven’t read much, but it specifies it is not about beliefs, but is focused on the Church misrepresenting its history and thus leading to members making choices they wouldn’t have if they had known the truth. 

I don’t think she has a chance in Hades in winning since part of it is the Church claiming to be divinely led if aI understand correctly. 

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9 minutes ago, Duncan said:

I'm seeing a bunch of photos of Joseph Smith, the Hill Cumorah and some toy thing, is that what we're supposed to see?

Picture are exhibits to show how the narrative was misrepresented.

3 minutes ago, Scott Lloyd said:

Looks to be some sort of PowerPoint thing, but I don’t have the ambition to wade through it. Perhaps provoman could be prevailed upon to summarize it. 

Summary: False narrative of: First Vision, Book of Mormon; Book of Abraham is false; 1st Watson Letter and Hill Comurah narrative; all the false narrative was known or should have been known and false narrative caused damage to plaintiff

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4 minutes ago, Calm said:

At the bottom is the proposed class action paper. I can’t cut and paste from it and haven’t read much, but it specifies it is not about beliefs, but is focused on the Church misrepresenting its history and thus leading to members making choices they wouldn’t have if they had known the truth. 

I don’t think she has a chance in Hades in winning since part of it is the Church claiming to be divinely led if aI understand correctly. 

Does not seem much different from the Tom Phillips lawsuit.

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Tries to avoid that problem by claiming it is not about belief, but when it gets into whether or not JS translated scripture that is belief.  So it seems similar to Phillips so far in the detailed approach.

She has Moroni being born after 600 BCE, but before Christ visited the Americas. I am wondering if she is conflating Moroni with the claim that Joseph also/first? identified the angel as Nephi.  Using the name of the former with details of latter?

Edited by Calm
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I feel like I could play a lawyer now because all the points Smac brought up I had redflagged along with a couple of others (everything taught at BYU goes through Correlation...somehow doubt my weaving, physics, EE, calculus, etc classes had to be correlated).

All these lawsuits I have been educated about on this board are paying off. ;)

Thanks, smac, for detailed analysis so I didn’t feel compelled by my obsessive nature to do the same. 

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13 minutes ago, Calm said:

She uses “upon information and belief” as a reference. Is there a particular legal defintion for that phrase?

Yes.  Per Black's Law Dictionary, "upon information and belief" is defined as "I got bupkis."

😁

It essentially means "I don't have specific information sufficient to present a factual statement, so I'll preface anything I feel like saying with 'upon information and belief' and call it good."

This phrase is used all the time in legal pleadings, but I do not think it can be used in a fraud context.  Allegations of fraud must be pleaded "with particularity," and I'm not sure they can be asserted merely "upon information and belief."

Thanks,

-Smac

Edited by smac97
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1 hour ago, Calm said:

At the bottom is the proposed class action paper. I can’t cut and paste from it and haven’t read much, but it specifies it is not about beliefs, but is focused on the Church misrepresenting its history and thus leading to members making choices they wouldn’t have if they had known the truth. 

I don’t think she has a chance in Hades in winning since part of it is the Church claiming to be divinely led if aI understand correctly. 

Oh brother! It’s Tom Phillips all over again. 

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1 hour ago, provoman said:

Laura Gaddy has filed a proposed Class Action Lawsuit against the Church

all docs here https://drive.google.com/open?id=1NuthcL9L-MZhnDRKcwp1E49Sx2472Dud

Nope. Not a snowball's chance in Hell. Even if it gets by a dismissal, there is no way to prove the first two allegations. I stopped reading there:

1. That the Church knew or should have known that the last version of the First Vision contained in the official history of the Church is false.... Really? Who is not to say that it is not the most complete and accurate version?

2. That the Church has known or should have known that the plates were not directly translated. Who is to say that Joseph Smith did not use Urim and Thummim to translate the Book of Lehi; and so the depictions of art are accurate with regard to at least that book?

Methinks this case is a publicity stunt.

Edited by RevTestament
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59 minutes ago, smac97 said:

Yes.  Per Black's Law Dictionary, "upon information and belief" is defined as "I got bupkis."

Good guess on my part, lol. It did come across as ‘I want to state something as factual without support, but you should trust me on it’.

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9 hours ago, provoman said:

Picture are exhibits to show how the narrative was misrepresented.

Summary: False narrative of: First Vision, Book of Mormon; Book of Abraham is false; 1st Watson Letter and Hill Comurah narrative; all the false narrative was known or should have been known and false narrative caused damage to plaintiff

And the over/under on this silliness surviving motion to dismiss is?

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9 hours ago, Calm said:

I don’t think she has a chance in Hades in winning since part of it is the Church claiming to be divinely led if aI understand correctly. 

I agree.

Here's some more information:

https://www.courthousenews.com/scathing-lawsuit-seeks-punitive-damages-from-mormon-church/

Also, in searching about this, I found that her attorney was Kay Burningham.  I've heard her speak and was impressed (not on this topic, of course....).  I wasn't even aware she was a member at the time.

She is the author of this book:

https://www.amazon.com/American-Fraud-Lawyers-against-Mormonism-ebook/dp/B004S7FTXE/ref=sr_1_1?keywords=Kay+Burningham&qid=1565099374&s=gateway&sr=8-1

 

Edited by ALarson
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This complaint is pretty embarrassing. I’d seriously consider striking the complaint and sanctioning the attorney. The fraud allegations are a mere restatement of the legal elements, which have been repeatedly held as insufficiently pled. It’s really, really bad. 

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11 hours ago, provoman said:

Laura Gaddy has filed a proposed Class Action Lawsuit against the Church

all docs here https://drive.google.com/open?id=1NuthcL9L-MZhnDRKcwp1E49Sx2472Dud

Another lawyer-enrichment action.

Maybe I should have gone to law school instead of learning computer science.

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17 minutes ago, smac97 said:

From a "MormonThink" page dedicated to her:

Per the Utah State Bar website, she was admitted in 1985.

So she's been a practicing lawyer for 34 years, and she apparently has extensive experience in litigating fraud claims.

So her excuse for drafting and filing this massive-waste-of-her-client's-money-and-the-federal-court's-time-and-resources lawsuit is . . . what?

My assessment of the complaint has essentially nothing to do with her antipathy toward the Church.  I just do not think much of our legal system being used for patently frivolous and vexatious lawsuits.  That, I'm sorry to say, is what this lawsuit is.  The Utah Court of Appeals has advised litigants and their attorneys that “[a] complaint alleging fraud should be filed only after a wrong is reasonably believed to have occurred; it should serve to seek redress for a wrong, not to find one.”  Shah v. Intermountain Healthcare, Inc., 2013 UT App 261, ¶ 12, 314 P.3d 1079 (quoting Segal v. Gordon, 467 F.2d 602, 607–08 (2d Cir. 1972).  Any attorney worth his (or her) salt would have known this lawsuit should never have been filed, and that it will be unsuccessful.

I have litigated many dozens of lawsuits predicated on a fraud theory.  They virtually always fail, most often at the very beginning of the lawsuit because the lawyer did such a poor job of vetting the claims and pleading them in the complaint (much like what we are witnessing here).  I eventually became so fed up with the sheer number of poorly-drafted fraud-based lawsuits that I wrote an article about it and had it published in the Utah Bar Journal:  A Primer on Pleading Fraud Claims in Utah.  

Preparing and filing a complaint based on a fraud theory is not rocket science.  It's not that hard.  It just takes a bit more investigation and research and time.  But it also takes a measure of professionalism to decline to file a fraud claim when the facts and the law cannot support such a claim.

Thanks,

-Smac

The mere fact that she lists so many aspects of church history that she disagrees with suggests that there is not a single one that is "material."

This is going to go into my legal pleadings collection that I affectionately call, the "Binder of Shame."

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On 8/6/2019 at 8:58 AM, PacMan said:

The mere fact that she lists so many aspects of church history that she disagrees with suggests that there is not a single one that is "material."

That's a good point.  A fact is “material” only if “the knowledge or ignorance of [it] would naturally influence [a party's] judgment . . . in estimating the degree and character of the risk involved in a transaction.”  Walter v. Stewart, 2003 UT App 86, ¶ 23, 67 P.3d 1042 (second alteration and omission in original) (citation and internal quotation marks omitted).

The laundry list of grievances in the complaint work against her, as she will have to prove up all nine elements of fraud with particularity as to each purported misstatement of fact in the complaint, including the plaintiff's reliance on it.  Good luck with that and showing that each of these was "material."

I'm reminded of a line from the 1995 movie, Sabrina: "More isn't always better, Linus. Sometimes it's just more."

So it is when one is pleading a fraud claim. More isn't always better, Kay.  Sometimes it's just more.  😀

But this is probably neither here nor there.  I don't think the Church's attorneys will spend time parsing such things out, and will instead focus on the Ecclesiastical Abstention Doctrine.

Thanks,

-Smac

Edited by smac97
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14 minutes ago, smac97 said:

That's a good point.  A fact is “material” only if “the knowledge or ignorance of [it] would naturally influence [a party's] judgment . . . in estimating the degree and character of the risk involved in a transaction.”  Walter v. Stewart, 2003 UT App 86, ¶ 23, 67 P.3d 1042 (second alteration and omission in original) (citation and internal quotation marks omitted).

The laundry list of grievances in the complaint work against her, as she will have to prove up all nine elements of fraud with particularity as to each purported misstatement of fact in the complaint, including the plaintiff's reliance on it.  Good luck with that and showing that each of these was "material."

I'm reminded of a line from 1995's Sabrina: "More isn't always better, Linus. Sometimes it's just more."

So it is when one is pleading a fraud claim. More isn't always better, Kay.  Sometimes it's just more.  😀

But this is probably neither here nor there.  I don't think the Church's attorneys will spend time parsing such things out, and will instead focus on the Ecclesiastical Abstention Doctrine.

Thanks,

-Smac

So why would a lawyer with so much experience file a lawsuit that is so defective?  Is the idea to actually win the suit, or perhaps something a bit more Fabian?

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8 minutes ago, ksfisher said:

So why would a lawyer with so much experience file a lawsuit that is so defective? 

She wrote her book in 2011 ( https://www.amazon.com/American-Fraud-Lawyers-against-Mormonism-ebook/dp/B004S7FTXE/ref=sr_1_1?keywords=kay+burningham&qid=1565106014&s=gateway&sr=8-1    An American Fraud: One Lawyer's Case Against Mormonism)

So, this appears to be something she's been wanting to do for awhile (possibly?).  I wonder what her relationship is with Laura Gaddy?  

Quote

Is the idea to actually win the suit, or perhaps something a bit more Fabian?

I can't imagine she thinks she can win this case.   But to embarrass or get attention or cause some bad PR for the church is more like it, IMO.

But who knows?  Maybe she actually believes this will go somewhere.  (I don't.)

Edited by ALarson
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21 minutes ago, smac97 said:

That's a good point.  A fact is “material” only if “the knowledge or ignorance of [it] would naturally influence [a party's] judgment . . . in estimating the degree and character of the risk involved in a transaction.”  Walter v. Stewart, 2003 UT App 86, ¶ 23, 67 P.3d 1042 (second alteration and omission in original) (citation and internal quotation marks omitted).

The laundry list of grievances in the complaint work against her, as she will have to prove up all nine elements of fraud with particularity as to each purported misstatement of fact in the complaint, including the plaintiff's reliance on it.  Good luck with that and showing that each of these was "material."

I'm reminded of a line from 1995's Sabrina: "More isn't always better, Linus. Sometimes it's just more."

So it is when one is pleading a fraud claim. More isn't always better, Kay.  Sometimes it's just more.  😀

But this is probably neither here nor there.  I don't think the Church's attorneys will spend time parsing such things out, and will instead focus on the Ecclesiastical Abstention Doctrine.

Thanks,

-Smac

Damages = actual harm + proximate causation. How's she gonna prove that?

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