You are on page 1of 61
SUPREME COURT: OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK COUNTY OF NEW YORK LANDMARK EDUCATION CORPORATION, : Index No. 11 14814093 7 a Plaintiff, ~ against - LAS. Part 3 2 Justice Davis ‘THE CONDE NAST PUBLICATIONS, INC., d/b/a SELF MAGAZINE, ADVANCE t i MAGAZINE PUBLISHERS, INC., d/b/a ae SELF MAGAZINE, and DIRK MATHISON, Defendants. PLAINTIFF'S MEMORANDUM OF LAW IN OPPOSITION TO DEFENDANTS’ MO R SUM Morrison Cont GER & WEINSTEIN 750 Lexinoron AveNuE, New York. N.Y. 10022 Page ‘TABLE OF AUTHORITIES 000.0000 0 cece teee neces ee erect teens i PRELIMINARY STATEMENT .....-- 1 STATEMENT OF FACTS ....-- 5 ‘The Parties 5 ‘The False And Defamatory Publication ....... Seat erie 1 Evidence of Falsity.. 20-55 + 10 ‘A. The Forum is Not *a Cult” 10 B. Landmark Does Not Brainwash Participants in The Forum or Use Mind-Manipulation to Induce Mind Control, Thought Reform or Trance-Like Activities ...... +++: 12 C. Landmark Does Not Use Manipulative Recruitment Techniques .......-+ ee tee 4 D. Participation in the Forum Causes No vo Paychologica arepe arrears tree ES eee ecctata 16 E. Landmark Does Not Engage In Fraud or Deceit In Fund Raising»... 20220000 See eee see ieee 16 F. Landmark Does Not Harass Critics of the Forum And Their Families or Former Participants . f7 G. Landmark Does Not Induce Forum Participants To Isolate Themselves From Their Friends and Families ......--..--++ 18 Evidence of Readers’ Understanding of the Challenged Statements... 22. 0eeeee eee sees eres ee eee es 19 ARGUMENT 0.0.2. ccc cert weet reer ects cnet ener ee eeenead 23 1 PREVAILING SUMMARY JUDGMENT STANDARDS MANDATE DENIAL OF DEFENDANTS’ MOTION FOR SUMMARY JUDGMENT ....... +++ 23 I WV. v. HEARSAY EVIDENCE IS INADMISSIBLE TO SUPPORT A MOTION FOR SUMMARY JUDGMENT ..........-. 25 ‘THE STATEMENTS COMPLAINED OF, WHEN AFFORDED A REASONABLE DEFAMATORY MEANING, ARE NOT SUBSTANTIALLY TRUE .........-5-0-5 28 A. Defendants’ Offer of Proof Does Not Meet ‘The Allegations of Plaintiff's Complaint ©... 0... .ee eee ee 28 B. The Challenged Statements Are Susceptible Of The Defamatory Meanings Alleged By Plaintiff ..........-.2-0 202s eeeee 31 C, Plaintiff's Burden Is Only To Prove Falsity By A Preponderance of the Evidence ..... 0. .00e0eeee 35 ‘THE CHALLENGED STATEMENTS ARE NOT CONSTITUTIONALLY PROTECTED EXPRESSIONS OF OPINION ... 0. 00s eee eee cece e eee eeee 37 A, The United States Constitution Does Not Afford First Amendment Protection to Expressions Of Opinion .......4ee eee ee eee eeeeee 37 B. The Challenged Statements Do Not Constitute Expressions Of Opinion Privileged Under The New York State Constitution. .... +4. +005 38 THE CHALLENGED STATEMENTS ARE "OF AND CONCERNING" PLAINTIFF 04202002000 7 ICONCEUSION tu tceestictesiic eet e sete tice iite eheeetetseeetOg,