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Laura DeCrescenzo v Church of Scientology CA 2nd Appellate District Opinion 06-24-11

Laura DeCrescenzo v Church of Scientology CA 2nd Appellate District Opinion 06-24-11

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Published by AnonLover
Laura DeCrescenzo initial judgment that failed to state any factual findings overturned on appeal. See also http://tiny.ly/gkvk
Laura DeCrescenzo initial judgment that failed to state any factual findings overturned on appeal. See also http://tiny.ly/gkvk

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Published by: AnonLover on Jun 26, 2011
Copyright:Public Domain

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06/26/2011

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Filed6/24111DeCrescenzov.ChurchofScientology
CA2/3
NOTTOBEPUBLISHEDINTHEOFFICIALREPORTS
CaliforniaRulesofCourt,rule8.1115(a),prohibitscourtsandpartiesfromcitingorrelyingonopinionsnotcertifiedforpublicationororderedpublished,exceptasspecified
by
rule8.1115{a).Thisopinionhasnotbeencertifiedforpublicationororderedpublishedforpurposesofrule8.1115(a).
INTHECOURTOFAPPEALOFTHESTATEOFCALIFORNIASECONDAPPELLATEDISTRICTDIVISIONTHREEDefendantsandRespondents.(LosAngelesCountySuper.Ct.No.BC411018)LAURAANNDeCRESCENZO,B224409PlaintiffandAppellant,v.CHURCHOFSCIENTOLOGYINTERNATIONALetal.,APPEALfromajudgmentoftheSuperiorCourtofLosAngelesCounty,RonaldM.Sohigian,Judge.Reversedwithdirections.MetzgerLawGroup,RaphaelMetzgerandKathrynDarnellforPlaintiffandAppellant.ProskauerRose,BertH.Deixler,HaroldM.Brody,G.SamuelCleaver;JefferMangelsButler
&
Mitchell,RobertMangels,MatthewD.Hinks;Rabinowitz,Boudin,Standard,Krinsky
&
Lieberman,EricM.LiebermanandDavidB.GoldsteinforDefendantsandRespondents.
 
LauraAnnDeCrescenzoappealsajudgmentdismissinghercomplaintagainstChurchofScientologyInternational(Scientology)andReligiousTechnologyCenter(collectively,defendants)afterthesustainingofdemurrerswithoutleavetoamendbasedonthestatutesoflimitations.Plaintiffcontendsshehasadequatelypledacombinationofdelayeddiscoveryofhercausesofactionandabasisforequitableestoppelprecludingdefendantsfromassertingastatuteoflimitationsdefense.Ourreviewofthisrecordcompelstheconclusionthatplaintiffhasadequatelyallegedthat(1)shewasunabletocomprehendthewrongfulnessofthedefendants'conductforaperiodoftimeandthathercausesofactiondidnotaccrueuntilshedidsoand(2)evenafterherdelayeddiscoveryofhercausesofaction,thedefendants'threatsandintimidationcausedhertodelayfilinghercomplaint.Inaddition,werejectdefendants'contentionthatplaintiffiscollaterallyestoppedfromprosecutingheractionbyafederalcourtjudgmentthatequitableestoppelwasinapplicablebecausethefactsallegedinplaintiff'spriorcomplaintwereinsufficienttodemonstratereasonablerelianceondefendants'representations.Weholdthatherallegationsofadditionalfactsinthe.presentcomplaintestablishabasisforreasonablerelianceandsuchnewallegationsarenotprecludedbythefederaljudgment.Wethereforewillreversethejudgmentwithdirections.
FACTUALANDPROCEDURALBACKGROUND
PlaintifffiledacomplaintagainstScientologyinApril2009allegingthatshebeganworkingforthatorganizationattheageofnine,becameeffectivelyafull-timeemployeeattheageoften,andlaterleftherhomeandfamilyinanotherstatetowork2
 
forScientologyinCalifornia.Sheallegedthatshemarriedaco-workerattheageofsixteen,becamepregnant,andthatScientologyforcedhertohaveanabortionattheageofseventeen.ShealsoallegedthatduringthetimeshewasemployedbyScientology,from1991to2004,shewaspaidlessthantheminimumwageandworkedunderotherillegalconditions.Plaintifffurtherallegedthat(1)Scientologyseverelyrestrictedherpersonalfreedomandappliedrepressivemeasurestoenforceherloyaltytotheorganization;(2)shewasallowedtoleaveheremploymentin2004,attheageof25,onlyaftershehadattemptedsuicide;(3)shehadlittleformaleducationatthattime,wasunsophisticated,andhadbeenisolatedfrommainstreamsocietyandculture;(4)shewassubjectedtoacoerciveexitinterviewandrequiredtosigndocumentspurportedlyexculpatingScientology,andthatthedocumentswereillegalandunenforceable;(5)shewasnotgivenacopyofthedocumentsthatshesignedand(6)ScientologyfalselyrepresentedtoherintheexitinterviewthatshehadnoclaimsandnorecourseagainstScientologyandothersandthatsheowedScientologyapproximately$120,000forherjobtraining.Plaintiff'soriginalcomplaintagainstScientologypledsixcausesofactiondenominatedas:(1)rescission;(2)unpaidwages;(3)discriminationandinvasionofprivacy;(4)humantrafficking;(5)intentionalinflictingofemotionaldistress;and(6)obstructionofjustice.ShefiledafirstamendedcomplaintinMay2009modifyingsomeofhercountsandaddingaseventhcountforfraudanddeceit.ScientologyremovedthecasetotheUnitedStatesDistrictCourtfortheCentralDistrictof3

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