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Laura D’s attorneys answer Scientology’s latest delaying tactic with a legal blast of their own

[Laura DeCrescenzo and her attorney, John Blumberg]

Laura DeCrescenzo’s legal team has answered Scientology’s latest delaying tactic in her 2009 forced-abortion lawsuit, and attorneys John Blumberg and Ave Buchwald state up front what’s really at stake as Scientology asks for a stay in Los Angeles Superior Court.

Scientology wants Laura’s nine-year state lawsuit put on hold as the church pursues a long-shot appeal of a long-shot federal lawsuit it filed in order to throw up a roadblock before Laura’s scheduled August trial. That federal suit was dismissed, but the church wants to pursue its appeal even though that might delay Laura’s trial for years.

“The federal court dismissed the action and [Scientology] appealed, triggering a process that can take years before final resolution. The issue is whether [Scientology]’s use of the federal system, after many years of voluntary participation in the Superior Court, is a subterfuge whose purpose is to further delay plaintiff from her day in court,” Laura’s attorneys write.

Well, that’s exactly what it feels like — simply a way of preventing Laura from finally getting her day in court, the latest cynical Hail Mary from Scientology’s unlimited legal budget.

Laura’s legal odyssey is long and complex, and her attorneys go through its details pretty quickly in this document, which we have for you below. But in summing up, they explain best why the Los Angeles court should ignore Scientology’s request for a stay after it has already spent so much time trying to deny Laura her day in court…


Plaintiff [Laura] filed her complaint in 2009, seeking justice for defendants’ abuses that occurred from 1991, when she was 12-years-old, through 2004. After nine years of litigation, plaintiff finally had a firm trial date. CSI [Scientology] seeks further delay during the years that it will pursue a meritless appeal, undoubtedly to be followed by a request for en banc hearing and then a petition for a writ of certiarari [an appeal to the US Supreme Court]. CSI contends a stay will not prejudice plaintiff. But the prejudice to plaintiff is best expressed by the well-known axiom that justice delayed is justice denied. Further delaying this case will deny plaintiff the justice she seeks.

We asked attorney Scott Pilutik for his thoughts on the filing.

I’ve spoken about this case a bit and not much has changed since it first moved to state court except for the myriad delays Scientology has created from thin air. There’s a concept called laches, more common to state law than federal law, which is a bit like an informal statute of limitations. Basically it means that even if you had an argument at date x, waiting so long to raise it means you don’t get to raise it if it means the other party is prejudiced. I don’t believe Scientology had an argument to begin with, but this opposition to Scientology’s motion does a good job of reminding the court that Scientology could have brought this argument years ago. And it’s true — there’s no element in Scientology’s motion that precluded it from being brought many years ago. The only reasonable conclusion, as Laura’s trial date draws near, is that this is a doomed Hail Mary pass. Ultimately, the standard Scientology needs to meet to succeed on its motion is whether the federal district court judge (Judge Wu) abused his discretion despite that judge’s well-reasoned opinion, dismissing Scientology’s nonsense with prejudice. That’s all that matters here and the California Superior court isn’t about to find, years ago and many hundreds of thousands of dollars later, that it should have dismissed the entire thing on a tortured legal argument.

Here’s the document. Look it over and give us your thoughts…


DeCrescenzo v. Scientology: Opposition to Motion for Stay by Tony Ortega on Scribd


Make your plans now!


Wow, only a few weeks now before this year’s HowdyCon in Chicago, June 21-23. As in past years, we’re looking forward to meeting readers of the Bunker, culminating in Saturday night’s main event.

The biggest difference this year is that our Saturday night event is separate from that evening’s dinner. Chee Chalker is setting up an inexpensive pizza dinner that you don’t need to pay for ahead of time, after which we’ll walk over to the theater where our event, hosted by Chicago Fire star Christian Stolte, will take place. Because it’s a separate event, we’re asking that you pay $10 each to get into the Saturday night event, which will help us recoup what the Bunker paid for the venue. (We have never made a penny on our HowdyCon meetups, we only try to break even.)

Please email your proprietor (tonyo94 AT gmail) in order to reserve your spot for Saturday night’s main event. Seating is limited, and we’re going to have some really interesting people on stage and they may make a few announcements that you don’t want to miss.



Scientology disconnection, a reminder

Bernie Headley has not seen his daughter Stephanie in 5,129 days.
Katrina Reyes has not seen her mother Yelena in 1,732 days
Brian Sheen has not seen his grandson Leo in 275 days.
Geoff Levin has not seen his son Collin and daughter Savannah in 163 days.
Clarissa Adams has not seen her parents Walter and Irmin Huber in 1,338 days.
Carol Nyburg has not seen her daughter Nancy in 2,112 days.
Jamie Sorrentini Lugli has not seen her father Irving in 2,886 days.
Quailynn McDaniel has not seen her brother Sean in 2,232 days.
Dylan Gill has not seen his father Russell in 10,798 days.
Mirriam Francis has not seen her brother Ben in 2,466 days.
Claudio and Renata Lugli have not seen their son Flavio in 2,726 days.
Sara Goldberg has not seen her daughter Ashley in 1,766 days.
Lori Hodgson has not seen her son Jeremy and daughter Jessica in 1,478 days.
Marie Bilheimer has not seen her mother June in 1,004 days.
Joe Reaiche has not seen his daughter Alanna Masterson in 5,093 days
Derek Bloch has not seen his father Darren in 2,233 days.
Cindy Plahuta has not seen her daughter Kara in 2,553 days.
Claire Headley has not seen her mother Gen in 2,528 days.
Ramana Dienes-Browning has not seen her mother Jancis in 884 days.
Mike Rinder has not seen his son Benjamin and daughter Taryn in 5,186 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his daughter Spring in 1,292 days.
Skip Young has not seen his daughters Megan and Alexis in 1,695 days.
Mary Kahn has not seen her son Sammy in 1,567 days.
Lois Reisdorf has not seen her son Craig in 1,149 days.
Phil and Willie Jones have not seen their son Mike and daughter Emily in 1,654 days.
Mary Jane Sterne has not seen her daughter Samantha in 1,898 days.
Kate Bornstein has not seen her daughter Jessica in 13,007 days.


3D-UnbreakablePosted by Tony Ortega on May 29, 2018 at 07:00

E-mail tips and story ideas to tonyo94 AT gmail DOT com or follow us on Twitter. We post behind-the-scenes updates at our Facebook author page. After every new story we send out an alert to our e-mail list and our FB page.

Our book, The Unbreakable Miss Lovely: How the Church of Scientology tried to destroy Paulette Cooper, is on sale at Amazon in paperback, Kindle, and audiobook versions. We’ve posted photographs of Paulette and scenes from her life at a separate location. Reader Sookie put together a complete index. More information can also be found at the book’s dedicated page.

The Best of the Underground Bunker, 1995-2017 Just starting out here? We’ve picked out the most important stories we’ve covered here at the Undergound Bunker (2012-2017), The Village Voice (2008-2012), New Times Los Angeles (1999-2002) and the Phoenix New Times (1995-1999)

Learn about Scientology with our numerous series with experts…

BLOGGING DIANETICS: We read Scientology’s founding text cover to cover with the help of L.A. attorney and former church member Vance Woodward
UP THE BRIDGE: Claire Headley and Bruce Hines train us as Scientologists
GETTING OUR ETHICS IN: Jefferson Hawkins explains Scientology’s system of justice
SCIENTOLOGY MYTHBUSTING: Historian Jon Atack discusses key Scientology concepts

Other links: Shelly Miscavige, ten years gone | The Lisa McPherson story told in real time | The Cathriona White stories | The Leah Remini ‘Knowledge Reports’ | Hear audio of a Scientology excommunication | Scientology’s little day care of horrors | Whatever happened to Steve Fishman? | Felony charges for Scientology’s drug rehab scam | Why Scientology digs bomb-proof vaults in the desert | PZ Myers reads L. Ron Hubbard’s “A History of Man” | Scientology’s Master Spies | The mystery of the richest Scientologist and his wayward sons | Scientology’s shocking mistreatment of the mentally ill | The Underground Bunker’s Official Theme Song | The Underground Bunker FAQ

Our non-Scientology stories: Robert Burnham Jr., the man who inscribed the universe | Notorious alt-right inspiration Kevin MacDonald and his theories about Jewish DNA | The selling of the “Phoenix Lights” | Astronomer Harlow Shapley‘s FBI file | Sex, spies, and local TV news


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