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  • Title:

    Statement of Decision—Lee v. Duddy re: “The God-Men” by Neil Duddy and the SCP

    Summary:

    The complete text of the Statement of Decision in Lee et al v. Duddy et al, the landmark libel case in which Judge Leon Seyranian found The God-Men to be “in all major respects false, defamatory, and unprivileged, and, therefore, libelous.” In his decision he cited deposition testimony from the defendants as well as testimony before the court from expert witnesses and members of the local churches. These citations are linked to images of the exhibits and transcripts in the case.

    Statement of Decision—Lee v. Duddy re: “The God-Men” by Neil Duddy and the SCP

    Statement of Decision —The Judgment on The God-Men

    The following is an accurate rendering of Judge Leon Seyranian’s Statement of Decision in the Lee v. Duddy case concerning The God-Men by Neil Duddy and the SCP. Hyperlinks have been added to link to the appropriate supporting documentation from deposition testimony, trial testimony, or trial exhibits. In some cases Judge Seyranian’s statement identifies a witness’s testimony supporting a particular point in the decision without citing the page number. The links for these items have been added in the column headed “Other Trial Testimony”.

    This column is not a part of the original document. For an Adobe Acrobat version of the document without the “Other Trial Testimony” column, click here (5.4 MB file).

    Links: Home Page | Libel Litigation | The God-Men | Statement of Decision | Judge’s Comments

    Other Trial Testimony

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            IN THE SUPERIOR COURT OF THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA
    
                    IN AND FOR THE COUNTY OF ALAMEDA
    
    
                    
    WITNESS LEE, et al.,    )    No. 540 585-9
                            )
         Plaintiffs,        )    STATEMENT OF DECISION
                            )
    v.                      )
                            )
    NEIL T. DUDDY, et al.,  )
                            )
         Defendants.        )
    ________________________)
    
    
         This matter came on regularly for trial and was heard as an
    	 
    uncontested matter as to the defendant Neil T. Duddy, because of
    
    his failure to appear, and was heard as a default matter as to
    
    the defendant Schwengeler-Verlag for its failure to file a
    
    responsive pleading to the plaintiffs' First Amended and First
    
    Supplemental Complaint.  Although the trial was uncontested, the
    
    Court feels that the plaintiffs have presented competent and
    
    reliable evidence, and the Court was very impressed with the
    
    stature and quality of the witnesses presented.  Moreover, the
    
    Court was provided with a complete opportunity to question and
    
                                  
    							  
    
    -1-
     
     

    Other Trial Testimony

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    cross examine the witnesses in order to ascertain the truth as
    
    the Court should do in a case involving First Amendment rights,
    
    regardless of whether the defendants appear or not.  There was
    
    nothing that the Court wanted to see or to ask that was not
    
    provided.  Furthermore, the evidence on behalf of the plaintiffs
    
    was substantiated by independent evidence from qualified expert
    
    witnesses.  Accordingly, the Court finds that the manuscript by
    
    Neil. T. Duddy entitled The God-Men (Exhibit 1) disseminated
    
    (published) in the United States, the book Die Sonderlehre des
    
    Witness Lee Und Seiner Ortsgemeinde published by Schwengeler-
    
    Verlag (Exhibit 3) disseminated (published) in Europe, and the
    
    book The God-Men, An Inquiry Into Witness Lee and the Local
    
    Church by Neil T. Duddy and the SCP published by Inter-Varsity
    
    Press (Exhibit 5) disseminated (published) in the United States
    
    and England, are in all major respects false, defamatory and
    
    unprivileged, and, therefore, libelous. (California Civil Code
    
    §45)
    
         In addition, the Court further finds:
    
         1.   All of the defendants' publications create the image
    
    that Witness Lee and William Freeman are leaders of a cult and
    
    that the Church in Anaheim is a cult.  All of the express and
    
    implied statements to that effect are false and defamatory.
    
         A "cult" today is generally understood to involve a
    
    centralized authority that manipulates social influences in order
    
    to gain control over people for devious ends.  (Testimony of Dr.
    
    H. Newton Malony, Psychologist and Professor of Psychology at
    
    
    
    -2-
     
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
                
                
                
                
                
                
                
                
                
                
                
                
                
                
                
                
                
                
                
                
                
                
                
                
                
    Malony, 8-9,  
    27-28
    
       

    Other Trial Testimony

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    Fuller Theological Seminary.)  The epitome of the cult leader and
    
    cult is that of Jim Jones and the Peoples' Temple.  (Testimony of
    
    Dr. J. Gordon Melton, Director of the Institute for the Study of
    
    American Religions, author of the Encyclopedia of American
    
    Religions, and a well qualified expert on the subject of "new
    
    religions.", pages 20, 39 and 92 of the trial transcript of May
     
    28, 1985, hereafter "Tr.")
     
    The depositions of defendant Neil Duddy, (pages 738-40, 782)
     
    and James Sire (Editor of Inter-Varsity Press and member of Board
     
    of Reference of Spiritual Counterfeits Project (SCP)) (Vol.5, p.
     
    354-5) indicate that the authors and publishers knew that their
     
    publications could convey such an impression and readers would
     
    reasonably so understand the publications. This was confirmed by
    
    testimony of the expert witnesses.
    
         The finding that these statements are false and defamatory
    
    as to the plaintiffs is supported by the testimony of the expert
    
    witnesses Dr. J. Gordon Melton; Dr. (Father) John Saliba, S.J.,
    
    of the University of Detroit, an expert in the study of new
    
    religions and "anti-cult" organizations; the Reverend Dr. Eugene
    
    Van Ness Goetchius, an Episcopal priest and a Professor of
    
    Theology at the Episcopal Divinity School affiliated with Harvard
    
    University; Dr. Rodney Stark, Professor of Sociology at the
    
    University of Washington; and Dr. H. Newton Malony. These
    
    experts unanimously testified that plaintiff Witness Lee was a
    
    Christian teacher and preacher and the Church in Anaheim (and all
    
    Local Churches) is an evangelical Christian body and that
    
    
    
    -3-
     
    
    
                
                
                
                
    Also:
    Melton, 20-21
    Saliba, 113
    Goetchius,
    144-145, 148
    Stark, 170
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
    Melton, 35-36
    Saliba, 
    127-128
     
     
     
    Goetchius,
    149, 151-152
     
     
    Stark, 170
     
    Malony, 28
     
     
    Malony, 53
    Melton, 15, 18
    Goetchius,
    141-142
    Saliba, 117
    Stark, 169-170
    
       

    Other Trial Testimony

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    plaintiff William T. Freeman is likewise a Christian teacher and
    
    preacher.
    
         It is the finding of the Court that defendants made these
    
    statements with knowledge of their falsity and deliberately to
    
    create the image of the plaintiffs as such a cult. This finding
    
    is supported by the testimony of the expert witnesses, as well as
    
    Duddy's testimony that the advertisement correlating Witness Lee
    
    with Jim Jones in Die Sonderlehre des Witness Lee und Seiner
    
    Ortsgemeinde was unfair. (Duddy, pp 784-785)
    
         2.  The express and implied statements in defendants'
    
    publications that plaintiffs either engage in or advocate
    
    deceptive recruiting practices in order to bring people into the
    
    Local Church are false and defamatory.
    
         Duddy intended to convey to the readers that Witness Lee's
    
    teaching could cause members to lie, be deceitful and engage in
    
    deceptive proselytizing practices. (Duddy, pp. 433-435, 530-531,
    
    754, 2155, 2157). Readers would reasonably so understand the
    
    publications.
    
         The finding of falsity of these statements is supported by
    
    the testimony of present members. It is also supported by Dr.
    
    Malony (an expert on conversion processes) together with his
    
    survey of current and former members of the Local Church (Ex.
    
    24), who unanimously confirmed that there was no such deception,
    
         All witnesses established that there were no secret beliefs
    
    as expressed and implied in the publications and all such
    
    statements are therefore, also false and defamatory.
    
    
    
    -4-
     
    
    
    
    
    Goetchius, 141
    Melton, 45-46,
     76
    Saliba, 118,
     126
    Stark, 171-172:
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    Malony, 12,Gruhler, 89-92
     41-42
    Gruhler, 79
    
    
    Melton, 22
    
       

    Other Trial Testimony

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         The principal "case history" of such conduct reported in the
    
    publications was that of "Cia" or "Rebecca" who in real life was
    
    Cindy Meinecke.
    
         Mrs. Meinecke testified at trial as to the falsity of the
    
    general tenor of the story as well as the falsity of virtually
    
    all the "facts" regarding the alleged incident. The falsity was
    
    also confirmed by Son Rockstroh, the alleged proselyter.
    
         It is the finding of this Court that the defendants made the
    
    foregoing statements or implications with the knowledge that they
    
    were false or with a reckless disregard of the truth or falsity
    
    thereof. Defendant Duddy admitted that he had not checked with
    
    any of the principal persons actually involved in the alleged
    
    "case history" (Duddy deposition (hereafter "Duddy") pp 549, 957,
    
    1049) and did not verify information from sources that were
    
    available to him. (Duddy, pp 990-1, 994-5, 1016, 963) Moreover,
    
    Brooks Alexander (Co-founder of SCP, cc-author of all the
    
    publications (Duddy, pp 248, 1169 and Alexander, p 79)) and James
    
    Sire testified that they saw no documentation of any of the
    
    statements regarding Cindy or Rebecca. (Alexander deposition
    
    (hereafter "Alexander"), p. 1604; Sire deposition (hereafter
    
    "Sire"), Vol. 6, p. 484) Alexander admitted that although he came
    
    to doubt Duddy's competence to do factual investigation
    
    (Alexander, pp 1605-6; 1610-11) and was concerned as to the
    
    validity of Duddy's informants, (Alexander, pp 1610-1611) he did
    
    no checking of Duddy's work for factual accuracy. (Alexander, pp
    
    1424; 1527) Dr. Stark confirmed that Duddy also did not do any
    
    
    
    -5-
     
    
    
    Meinecke, 167,
     178, 181-185,
     197-198, 200
    
    
    Rockstroh,
     413-422
    
    
    
    
    
    
    Also:
    Meinecke, 166
    
       

    Other Trial Testimony

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    checking on the Cindy incident. As Dr. Stark stated, "This is
    
    the worst kind of rumor mongering." (Tr. pp 171-172)
    
         Dr. Stark (co-author of Lofland-Stark Model) testified that
    
    Duddy did not accurately present his model of religious
    
    conversions that Duddy used to explain the Local Churches'
    
    alleged recruitment practices. Dr. Stark stated that Duddy
    
    "skips everything important in the model and comes out with some
    
    flat assertions that are completely, almost diabolically, the
    
    reverse of what the model says". (Tr., p 162) Dr. Stark stated
    
    that assuming Duddy had actually read Stark's presentation of the
    
    model, Stark would have to conclude that Duddy's
    
    misrepresentation was "malicious."  (Tr., p. 163) Dr. Malony
    
    also criticized Duddy's misuse of Stark's conversion model and
    
    stated that there was no validity to defendants' statements that
    
    the Local Churches' recruitment practices were somehow evil and
    
    qualitatively different from those of other Christian
    
    organizations.
    
         3.   The express and implied statements in defendants'
    
    publications that Witness Lee rules the Local Churches with an
    
    "iron rod" or "with a firm hand" are false and defamatory.
    
         Duddy intended to convey to the readers that Witness Lee was
    
    a virtual dictator over too many details of Local Church life
    
    (Duddy, pp. 2004-5) and readers would reasonably so understand
    
    the publications.
    
         The finding of falsity is based on testimony of the
    
    plaintiffs and their witnesses, including Dr. Melton, Dr. Saliba,
    
    
    
    -6-
     
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    Malony, 13-15
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    Gruhler, 96-98
    Lee, 241,
     245-250, 271
    Melton, 38-39
    Saliba, 128
    
       

    Other Trial Testimony

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    and Dr. Malony together with his survey of current and former
    
    members (Exhibit 24). Dr. Melton testified, based on his own
    
    investigation, that Lee's position in the Local Church was that
    
    of a preacher and teacher rather than exercising "administrative
    
    power in a kingly way" as the publications had asserted and that
    
    no such hierarchy existed. (Tr. 39) Dr. Malony's survey results
    
    (Ex. 24) were consistent with Dr. Melton's testimony.
    
         It is the finding of the Court that the defendants made the
    
    foregoing statements with the knowledge that they were false or
    
    with a reckless disregard of the truth or falsity.
    
         There was evidence that the authors and the publishers
    
    distorted statements made by Witness Lee in order to create an
    
    impression that Witness Lee asserts and imposes complete and
    
    unchallengeable control over church affairs and church members'
    
    lives. Jack Buckley (an SCP author of God-Men I whose work Duddy
    
    and SCP carried over into the publications sued upon) admitted
    
    that quotations from Witness Lee's work were taken out of
    
    context, misused and created a false and misleading
    
    representation of Witness Lee's teaching in that regard. (Buckley
    
    deposition (hereafter "Buckley"), pp 728-9, 741-2, 766 and 767)
    
    Dr. J. Gordon Melton concluded that given Duddy's education and
    
    claims of having read Witness Lee's writings, the consistent
    
    distortions of quotations indicate deliberate misrepresentations.
    
    (Tr. pp 40-46) Dr. Saliba's testimony also confirmed Duddy's
    
    consistent misrepresentation of Witness Lee's writings in this
    
    and other areas. (Tr. pp 117-119, 135)
    
    
    
    -7-
     
    Malony, 51-53
    
       

    Other Trial Testimony

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         The fact of defendants' willful distortion is further
    
    substantiated by the draft of the original manuscript which
    
    stated:
    
              "Reliable sources tell us that Lee
              himself does not rule with an iron rod."
              (Exhibit 62)
    
    The language in that draft following that statement was
    
    consistent with the concept that Witness Lee does not exercise
    
    such control. Nevertheless, that statement and its context was
    
    subsequently changed to assert in the publications exactly the
    
    opposite meaning.
    
         4.   The express and implied statements in defendants'
    
    publications that plaintiffs or any of the Local Churches engage
    
    in mental manipulation, or any of the various forms of what is
    
    commonly referred to as "brainwashing" or "thought reform" are
    
    false and defamatory. The statements concerning the practice of
    
    pray-reading and calling on the name of the Lord as being mental
    
    manipulation techniques causing, among other things, blurred
    
    mental acuity is also false.
    
         It was Duddy's intention to convey to the readers that "soft
    
    thought reform" was utilized by Witness Lee and the Local Church
    
    which would result in members sacrificing their individual and
    
    personal worth and withdraw from society. (Duddy, pp. 1092-1093)
    
    and readers would reasonably so understand the publications.
    
         The finding of falsity is supported by the testimony of Dr.
    
    Malony and his survey (Ex. 24), Dr. Goetchius, Dr. Saliba, and
    
    other plaintiffs' witnesses including Cindy Meinecke and Local
    
    
    
    -8-
     
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    Malony, 12,
     42-44, 51-52,
     64-66
    Goetchius, 142,
     150
    Saliba, 130-131
    Meinecke, 188
    Also:
    Melton 25-26,
     91
    
       

    Other Trial Testimony

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    Church members Dr. Steven Johnson, Christopher Leu, Dr. Herbert
    
    Zimmer, Dr. George Chua and Mrs. Jeanie Kong. Dr. Malony
    
    testified that pray-reading, far from being a manipulative or
    
    eastern mystical technique, was a helpful means to approach the
    
    Bible. Dr. Melton testified that the practices are not
    
    "technological and pagan", they do involve the use of mental
    
    faculties, they do not alter consciousness. (Tr. p. 25). Dr.
    
    Melton found no evidence of loss of "mental acuity." (Tr. p. 91)
    
         It is the finding of this Court that the statements were
    
    made by the defendants knowing they were false or with a reckless
    
    disregard of the truth or falsity.
    
         Brooks Alexander, the author of the appendix which purported
    
    to describe these manipulative techniques, testified that he
    
    could not name one person who told him they had blurred mental
    
    acuity from said alleged practices, nor had he asked any member
    
    regarding it, nor did he know for a fact that there was any
    
    elimination of consciously directed thought from pray-reading or
    
    calling on the name of the Lord. (Alexander, pp 1281-2, 1319-20,
    
    1848)
    
         5. The express and implied statements in the defendants'
    
    publications that plaintiffs and Local Church leaders control
    
    every aspect of church members' lives, including discouraging
    
    friendships, prohibiting dating, arranging marriages, controlling
    
    the use of finances, dictating where members should live or work
    
    are all false and defamatory.
    
    
    
    
    
    -9-
     
    Johnson, 83-86
    Leu, 102
    Kong, 462-463
    
       

    Other Trial Testimony

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         Duddy intended to convey to the readers that arranged
    
    marriages occur in the Local Church (Duddy, pp 2253-2254) and
    
    readers would reasonably so understand the publications. Dr.
    
    Saliba testified that Duddy attempted to convey to the readers
    
    that Witness Lee rules "like a despot and the elders are more or
    
    less like little despots", "they control everything and you are
    
    just merely submissive to them." (Tr. p. 126)
    
         The finding of falsity is supported by the testimony of all
    
    the witnesses, especially Dr. Melton and Dr. Malony, whose
    
    survey (Ex. 24) negated the allegations of control of members'
    
    lives.
    
         It is the finding of this Court that the statements were
    
    made by the defendants knowing they were false or with a reckless
    
    disregard of the truth or falsity.
    
         Neil Duddy's testimony indicated that he had never seen
    
    anything in the teachings discouraging friendships, prohibiting
    
    dating, nor any records of arranged marriages nor could he recall
    
    anybody that had such records. (Duddy, pp 1145-1150, 2256-7)
    
    Alexander testified there was no confirmation of such arranged
    
    marriages. (Alexander, pp 1586-7) Sire has no recollection of
    
    any substantiation of the charge of arranged marriages (Sire,
    
    Vol. 5, pp 352-358) The testimony of William Freeman and Dr.
    
    Steven Johnson, as well as other evidence introduced, established
    
    that such charges were false. (Exhibit 70)
    
         6.   The express and implied statements in defendants'
    
    publications that Witness Lee and the Local Church elders isolate
    
    
    
    -10-
     
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    Malony, 28,
     34, 35, 40,
     50
    Melton, 36
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    Freeman,
     361-362
    Johnson, 78-79
    
       

    Other Trial Testimony

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    members from society and forbid or discourage members from
    
    watching television, reading newspapers, going to movie theaters,
    
    and participating in sports, is false and defamatory.
    
         Duddy testified that he intended to depict the Local
    
    Churches as quarantining members from relatives who were outside
    
    of the Local Church (Duddy, pp 1644-5) and causing people to
    
    withdraw and be isolated from society (Duddy, pp 1092-1093) and
    
    readers would reasonably so understand the publications.
    
         The finding of falsity is based upon the testimony of
    
    plaintiffs' witnesses including Dr. Melton (Tr. p 95), Dr.
    
    Malony, his survey (Ex. 24), Dr.Goetchius (Tr. pp 150-152),
    
    Cindy Meinecke, Dr. Herbert Zimmer, Dr. Steven Johnson, and
    
    Christopher Leu. See also Duddy's deposition at pages 1130-1131,
    
    1138-1140 and 1150, wherein he acknowledged he has no evidence of
    
    any such conduct.
    
         It is the finding of this Court that the statements were
    
    made knowing they were false or with a reckless disregard of the
    
    truth or falsity thereof, in that Duddy testified he had no
    
    evidence of any such conduct. (Duddy, pp 1130-1131, 1138-1140,
    
    1150)
    
         7.   The express and implied statements in defendants'
    
    publications that Local Church elders have created an
    
    unchallengeable power structure that makes it impossible for
    
    church members to maturely exercise their faith and bear
    
    responsibility for their own lives are false and defamatory.
    
    
    
    
    
    -11-
     
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    Malony, 37-39,
     59, 65
    Meinecke, 201,
     208
    Johnson, 78,
     80-82, 90-91
    Leu, 100-102
    Also:
    Gruhler,
     100-102
    Lee, 257-263
    Saliba, 119-121
    
       

    Other Trial Testimony

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         Duddy intended by those statements to convey to readers that
    
    Witness Lee and "those who cooperate with him" are social
    
    manipulators (Duddy, p. 818) who determine God's will for members
    
    and their families without even being consulted (Duddy, p. 2252).
    
    Alexander testified that the book implies that the church elders
    
    are involved in dominance and control over members. (Alexander
    
    p. 1571) Sire testified that the statements indicate removal of
    
    members to a totalitarian and structured environment. (Sire, Vol.
    
    6, p. 637) Readers would reasonably so understand the
    
    publications.
    
         The finding that these statements are false is supported by
    
    the testimony of Cindy Meinecke, and current members who
    
    testified at trial, as well as Dr. Saliba and Dr. Malony's survey
    
    of current and former members (Ex. 24). Moreover, the testimony
    
    of Witness Lee, William Freeman, and Anaheim elder Eugene Gruhler
    
    indicated that the elders do not constitute an unchallengeable
    
    power structure. Rather, members have the freedom to disagree
    
    with elders and with Witness Lee, and that members are encouraged
    
    to seek God's will for themselves and to bear responsibility for
    
    their lives. Dr. Goetchius testified of his observation as to
    
    the maturity and well-developed character generally of the Local
    
    Church members and their families with whom he had personally
    
    interacted. (Tr. pp 149-152)
    
         It is the finding of the Court that the statements were made
    
    knowing they were false or with a reckless disregard of the truth
    
    or falsity thereof.
    
    
    
    -12-
     
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    Johnson, 88-89,
     91
    Saliba, 126-127
    
    
    Lee, 255-256,
     280-282
    Freeman,
     381-382, 384
    Gruhler, 98-100
    
       

    Other Trial Testimony

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         Duddy could not recall the name of one actual Local Church
    
    member that told Duddy that he did not make his own decisions.
    
    (Duddy, p. 1150) Moreover, Duddy stated under oath that it was
    
    not his testimony that members do not make their own decisions in
    
    matters of importance in their personal lives. Duddy also did
    
    not know if members made such decisions without consulting the
    
    elders. (Duddy, p. 1148) Jack Buckley testified that before SCP
    
    made the statement that Local Church members "prefer submission"
    
    over the "exercise of personal judgment and individual
    
    decision," SCP should have made some investigation to support the
    
    statement. Buckley, however, was not aware of any such
    
    investigation by SCP. (Buckley, p. 771) Buckley further
    
    testified that the limit of his work in investigating the
    
    government by the elders in the Local Church was to read
    
    materials given to him by SCP and to talk with SCP members.
    
    (Buckley, p. 721) Buckley admitted that The God-Men quoted
    
    Witness Lee's statement, concerning ministers of the Holy Spirit,
    
    out of context and misused it to convey the impression that the
    
    elders have authoritative power over members. (Buckley, p. 766-
    
    767) Dr. Saliba confirmed the misuse of this quote by Witness
    
    Lee. (Tr. pp 126-127)
    
         8.   The express and implied statements in defendants'
    
    publications that Witness Lee and the other plaintiffs are
    
    teaching and advocating conduct that would allow or encourage
    
    church members to engage in immoral behavior are false and
    
    defamatory.
    
    
    
    -13-
     
    
                    
       

    Other Trial Testimony

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         Duddy intended to convey to the readers that Witness Lee's
    
    teaching instructed one to listen to intuition and feelings, but
    
    in no case consider the Scripture; that one can engage in sexual
    
    assault, including rape, be a liar and deceitful and still regard
    
    himself as a good Christian; that you abide by your inner
    
    feelings, regardless of what the Scripture says; that unlike the
    
    Christian community, Witness Lee's teachings enhance immorality.
    
    (Duddy, pp 531, 566, 568-569, 673). Readers would reasonably so
    
    understand the publications.
    
         All witnesses testified as to the falsity of all such
    
    statements or implications and established that all the writings
    
    of Witness Lee taught the Biblically high standard of morality.
    
    Dr. Maloney's survey (Ex. 24) also supported the finding of
    
    falsity, as does the evidence of the author's and publishers'
    
    deliberate distortion of statements by Witness Lee.
    
         It is the finding of the Court that the statements were made
    
    knowing they were false or with a reckless disregard of the truth
    
    or falsity thereof.
    
         Dr. Melton testified that Duddy conveyed to the readers
    
    exactly the opposite of what Witness Lee teaches regarding
    
    morality (Tr. p. 59) and that for Duddy to convey such an
    
    impression was either deliberate or a reckless disregard of what
    
    Witness Lee said (Tr. p. 75-76); the authority of the Scripture
    
    in Witness Lee's teachings was misrepresented by Duddy to create
    
    the idea that Witness Lee encourages immorality, whereas, Witness
    
    
    
    
    
    -14-
     
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    Goetchius,
     142, 144
    Gruhler, 94-96
    Lee, 256-257
    Malony, 41
    Melton, 58-59
    Rockstroh, 425
    Saliba,
     119-121, 123
    
       

    Other Trial Testimony

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    Lee repeatedly upholds the Bible and its moral commandments. (Tr.
    
    pp 57-58)
    
         Dr. Goetchius testified that Duddy's use of Witness Lee's
    
    writings was a deliberate, careful misrepresentation of Witness
    
    Lee's teachings, including the teachings on morality. (Tr. p.
    
    141, 143)
    
         Dr. Saliba testified the quotes were taken out of context,
    
    "I get the impression they were twisted around to mean what he
    
    wanted them to mean." (Tr. pp 125-126)
    
         The defendants' own testimony established that the
    
    statements were made knowing them to be false, or with a reckless
    
    disregard of the truth or falsity thereof.
    
         Duddy admitted that Witness Lee teaches that people should
    
    follow the Ten Commandments and live a life higher than the Ten
    
    Commandments but that he never told the readers that Witness Lee
    
    taught this. (Duddy, pp. 406-7, 411-412)
    
         Buckley testified that:
    
              ". . . God Men I as written has painted
              a false picture as far as witness Lee's
              teachings on morality."
    
              (Buckley, p. 843)
    
        David Adeney, a member of the Board of Reference of SCP and
    
    former missionary to China testified that he has never seen any
    
    teachings in Witness Lee's writings that would allow one to be a
    
    liar, deceitful or engage in rape and still regard himself as a
    
    good Christian. (Adeney, p. 183)
    
    
    
    
    
    -15-
     
    
                    
       

    Other Trial Testimony

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         9.   The express and implied statements in defendants'
    
    publications that the plaintiffs or church members that follow
    
    plaintiffs' teachings are "moral dwarfs," which the authors
    
    define as persons whose conduct falls below the standard of the
    
    law, are false and defamatory.
    
         Duddy again intended to convey to the readers that Witness
    
    Lee's teachings enhance immorality. (Duddy, p. 623) Readers
    
    would reasonably so understand the publications.
    
         The finding that these statements are false is supported by
    
    the testimony of Jack Buckley (Buckley, p. 796), the testimony of
    
    plaintiffs' expert witnesses and Cindy Meinecke.
    
         It is the finding of the Court that the statements were made
    
    knowing they were false or with a reckless disregard of the truth
    
    or falsity.
    
         Dr. Melton testified that Duddy not only distorted Witness
    
    Lee's teachings in characterizing them as creating "moral
    
    pygmyism", but also distorted Benjamin Warfield's intent in
    
    creating the term. Dr. Melton testified that there are numerous
    
    writings of Witness Lee that are directly contrary to what Duddy
    
    conveyed to the readers. (Tr. pp. 69-73)
    
         Dr. Goetchius testified that a reasonable interpretation of
    
    Duddy's charge of "moral pygmyism" would be that of someone who
    
    is short on morals or lacking in moral perception and
    
    understanding. He further testified that there was no
    
    justification for such a charge against Witness Lee's teachings
    
    or those who follow it and to the contrary, Witness Lee's
    
    
    
    -16-
     
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    Goetchius,
     143
    Meinecke, 202
    
       

    Other Trial Testimony

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    teachings require a morality higher than the ethical code of the
    
    law (Tr., pp. 143-144)
    
         Buckley testified that he had not found anything in his
    
    reading of Witness Lee that would justify calling people who
    
    believe in his teachings moral dwarfs. (Buckley, p. 796)
    
         10.  The express and implied statements in defendants'
    
    publications that plaintiffs have publicly humiliated members and
    
    that some Anaheim church members and an alleged Northern
    
    California leader were hospitalized for psychiatric care because
    
    of plaintiffs' acts are false and defamatory.
    
         Duddy testified that he intended to convey to the readers
    
    that Witness Lee periodically publicly humiliates members.
    
    (Duddy, p. 1159) Sire testified that he recognized these
    
    allegations as being potentially libelous. (Sire, Vol. 4, p. 95-
    
    97, Vol. 6 520-521), Ex. 68) Readers would reasonably so
    
    understand the publications.
    
         Plaintiffs' evidence established that there was no such
    
    conduct by Witness Lee or any of the plaintiffs and that no such
    
    hospitalizations ever occurred.
    
         Dr. Melton testified he found no evidence of humiliation or
    
    hospitalization. (Tr. p. 92) Dr. Malony's survey (Ex. 24)
    
    confirmed, even from ex-members, that there was no such
    
    humiliation.
    
         It is the finding of the Court that the statements were made
    
    knowing they were false or with a reckless disregard of the truth
    
    or falsity thereof.
    
    
    
    -17-
     
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    Also:
    Malony, 41, 62
    Freeman, 385
    Gruhler, 80,
     82
    
       

    Other Trial Testimony

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         Duddy never confirmed one hospitalization and could not name
    
    one person allegedly hospitalized. He had no documentation
    
    (Duddy pp 1166-68), nor did he feel he should check. Duddy also
    
    asked the alleged Northern California church leader for an
    
    affidavit supporting such an allegation but was unable to obtain
    
    one. (Duddy, p. 1165) Duddy admitted that he has never been
    
    advised by any medical or psychological expert that any member of
    
    a local church has suffered due to Lee's theology or alleged
    
    thought reform. (Duddy, p. 1089)
    
         Albrecht, an SCP director, testified that it was Duddy's
    
    obligation to verify the allegations and that he should have
    
    tried to speak to the people allegedly hospitalized. (Albrecht,
    
    pp. 117-118) It was Duddy's primary responsibility to find out
    
    who allegedly went to the hospital. (Albrecht, pp 119-120)
    
         Squires, a director of SCP and the person in charge of
    
    defending the present lawsuit, was not aware of any evidence that
    
    a Northern California church leader was hospitalized because or
    
    Witness Lee's conduct. (Squires, p. 723) He could not remember
    
    any response to questionnaires he recently sent out concerning
    
    church members needing psychiatric care. (Squires, p. 760) He
    
    was not aware of any investigation done to determine the accuracy
    
    of the psychological or sociological areas of the book.
    
    (Squires, pp. 724-725)
    
         Sire, of Inter-Varsity Press, never received any
    
    information from Duddy concerning the alleged hospitalization of
    
    
    
    
    
    -18-
     
    
                    
       

    Other Trial Testimony

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    the Northern California church leader nor had he ever seen any
    
    records dealing with the matter. (Sire, Vol. 4, pp. 97-98)
    
         11.  The express and implied statements in defendants'
    
    publications that William Freeman, or any elder in the church in
    
    Anaheim, deceived Fuller Seminary is false and defamatory.
    
    Furthermore, the express and implied statements in said
    
    publications that "this alleged lack of forthrightness in self-
    
    representation is a quality which the Local Church displays" is
    
    also false and defamatory.
    
         Duddy intended to convey to the readers that William Freeman
    
    had not been forthright in his representation to Fuller and that
    
    he was concealing certain information, also that Local Church
    
    members are people who conceal, which he represented was an
    
    accurate description of their behavior and represented the
    
    general character and quality of the Local Church. (Duddy, pp
    
    430-432, 433-435). Readers would reasonably so understand the
    
    publications.
    
         The finding of falsity is based upon testimony of Dr. Cecil
    
    Melvin Robeck, Jr., Director of Academic Services of Fuller
    
    Seminary, formerly Director of Admissions, and the plaintiff
    
    William Freeman, together with the exhibits presented, (Ex. 14,
    
    15, 16, 17, 18, and 19) which established conclusively that there
    
    was no concealment, deception or lack of forthrightness nor had
    
    any member of the Fuller faculty made any such statement (Tr. pp
    
    81-89) and which also proved that such an allegation was a
    
    fabrication by the defendants. Furthermore, the foregoing
    
    
    
    -19-
     
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    Freeman,
     316-319,
     330-338
    
       

    Other Trial Testimony

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    evidence, together with the testimony of the expert witnesses
    
    established that all allegations of concealment, deception or
    
    lack of forthrightness on the part of the Local Church, its
    
    leaders or members are also false.
    
         It is the finding of the Court that the statements were made
    
    knowing them to be false or with a reckless disregard of the
    
    truth or falsity thereof.
    
         Sire confirmed that the Fuller Seminary admissions officials
    
    stated that Freeman was as forthright as possible and there was
    
    no thought of misrepresentation. (Ex. 47) Based upon that
    
    evidence Sire pulled the Freeman-Fuller incident from The God-
    
    Men, published by Inter-Varsity Press.
    
         12.  The express and implied statements in defendants'
    
    publications that plaintiffs use fear tactics or threats of
    
    reprisal in order to keep members loyal to the Local Church and
    
    prevent them from leaving are false and defamatory.
    
         Duddy intended to convey to the readers that the Local
    
    Church harassed and persecuted former Local Church members.
    
    (Duddy, pp. 1774, 2235). Readers would reasonably so understand
    
    the publications.
    
         The finding of falsity is based upon the testimony of
    
    plaintiffs' witnesses, including present members, Cindy Meinecke
    
    and Dr. Melton who established that there were no fear tactics or
    
    threats. Dr. Melton's testimony was that members were not being
    
    held against their will but were in the Church voluntarily, their
    
    
    
    
    
    -20-
     
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    Gruhler, 89-92
    Meinecke,
     202-203
    Melton, 96
    
       

    Other Trial Testimony

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    participation was not coerced but rather because they enjoyed
    
    being in the Local Church. (Tr. p. 96-97)
    
         It is the finding of the Court that the statements were made
    
    knowing them to be false or with a reckless disregard of the
    
    truth or falsity thereof.
    
         13.  The express and implied statements in defendants'
    
    publications that "most people who have left the Local Church
    
    find it necessary to relocate" in order to avoid Local Church
    
    persecution and that any such persecution occurred (including
    
    vandalizing of ex-members' homes) are all false and defamatory.
    
         Duddy intended to convey to the readers that most people who
    
    leave the Local Church find it necessary to relocate to avoid
    
    persecution. (Duddy, pp. 896-898)
    
         The finding of falsity is based upon the testimony of Eugene
    
    Gruhler which established that former members generally do not
    
    move away. Those that do move away do not do so because of fear
    
    of persecution as alleged. His testimony also established that
    
    some former members actually moved back into the area of Local
    
    Churches. Mr. Gruhler also investigated the allegations of
    
    vandalism and found that they were not only false but that the
    
    persons allegedly reporting the same denied such reports.
    
         It is the finding of the Court that the statements were made
    
    knowing them to be false or with a reckless disregard of the
    
    truth or falsity thereof.
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    -21-
     
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    Gruhler, 89-92
    
       

    Other Trial Testimony

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         Duddy admitted that no one in SCP, including himself had
    
    ever checked with anyone who allegedly had a home vandalized.
    
    (Duddy, p. 920)
    
         14.  The express and implied statements in defendants'
    
    publications that Witness Lee, or any of the plaintiffs, were
    
    guilty of financial mismanagement including any alleged misuse of
    
    $235,000 intended for a Stuttgart meeting hall are false and
    
    defamatory.
    
         It was Duddy's intention to convey to the readers a possible
    
    violation of law in the misuse of funds and also to demonstrate
    
    financial mismanagement. (Duddy, pp. 822-823, 839, 840, 849)
    
    Readers would reasonably so understand the publications.
    
         The finding of falsity is based upon testimony and
    
    documentary evidence presented at the trial which established
    
    that the funds for a Stuttgart meeting hall were originally
    
    forwarded to the Church in Stuttgart for the purpose represented.
    
    (Ex. 6 and 7) The funds were returned to the United States only
    
    after the proposed transaction in Stuttgart failed. The money
    
    was to be held in the United States, earning a higher rate of
    
    interest than in Germany, until the Church in Stuttgart found a
    
    suitable meeting hall. The Church in Stuttgart continued its
    
    efforts to obtain a meeting hall, (Ex. 31) which was known by all
    
    defendants prior to the publication of either Die Sonderlehre des
    
    Witness Lee Und Seiner Ortsgemeinde or The God-Men published by
    
    Inter-Varsity Press. (Ex. 46) (Mr. Sire of Inter-Varsity Press
    
    also had knowledge of this before publication of The God-Men)
    
    
    
    -22-
     
    
                    
       

    Other Trial Testimony

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    (Ex. 46)) The Church in Stuttgart found a suitable meeting hall
    
    and received the money with interest, upon its request, prior to
    
    the publication of Die Sonderlehre des Witness Lee Und Seiner
    
    Ortsgemeinde. Although that purchase was unable to be completed,
    
    the money thereafter remained in Stuttgart with the Church in
    
    Stuttgart and was ultimately used for the purchase of the
    
    Church's present meeting hall.
    
         Duddy acknowledged that such facts do not indicate
    
    mismanagement of money or deception. (Duddy pp. 835-837)
    
         It is the finding of the Court that the statements were
    
    published knowing them to be false or with a reckless disregard
    
    of the truth or falsity thereof.
    
         Albrecht testified it was irresponsible journalism to
    
    publish allegations of mismanagement of money without having some
    
    documentation. (Albrecht, p. 242) No such documentation was ever
    
    produced. (Sire, Vol. 5, pp 301-3)
    
         Duddy conceded he never contacted anyone in the Church in
    
    Stuttgart or the Church in Anaheim regarding the transaction.
    
    (Duddy, pp. 826-7, 840-1, 875) His sole source of alleged
    
    information was Max Rapoport, whom he knew was in conflict with
    
    the Local Church. Duddy had been warned by SCP to be careful of
    
    ex-members' statements and to check with other sources to confirm
    
    the accuracy of such statements. (Duddy, pp. 824-6) Duddy did
    
    not. Duddy had obvious reasons to doubt the veracity and
    
    accuracy of any report by Rapoport. (St. Amant v. Thompson (1968)
    
    390 U.S. 727, 732, 20 L.Ed.2d 262, 267-268)
    
    
    
    -23-
     
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    See:
    Gruhler, 83-85
    
       

    Other Trial Testimony

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         Duddy was also unable to persuade Rapoport to verify the
    
    alleged information by an affidavit. (Duddy, p. 865, Ex. 43)
    
         Sire recognized the lack of documentation as a major problem
    
    of this accusation and noted the allegation as being "libel".
    
    (Ex. 42 and 41) Sire did not recall seeing any documentation nor
    
    asking for any. (Sire, Vol. 5, p. 301-303)
    
         15.  All of the defendants intended to convey to the readers
    
    all of the false statements set forth above or recklessly
    
    disregarded the false and defamatory meanings that would be
    
    conveyed to the readers.
    
         This is supported by the testimony of all experts as well as
    
    the deposition testimony of Duddy, Alexander, Sire and Buckiey
    
    offered by plaintiffs.
    
         16. All of the false statements set forth above were
    
    defamatory in that the same convey to the readers that the
    
    plaintiffs Witness Lee and William Freeman are leaders of a
    
    "cult," and the Church in Anaheim is such a "cult". The false
    
    statements also convey to the readers that plaintiffs are engaged
    
    in a program of deceptive recruiting practices that prey upon
    
    weak and vulnerable people in order to bring them under the
    
    plaintiffs' total subjugation; that plaintiffs control every area
    
    of Local Church members' lives through the use of fear and other
    
    various techniques of mental manipulation and social isolation.
    
    The statements also convey to the readers that plaintiffs are
    
    teaching principles that allow, encourage, or condone immoral
    
    conduct; also, that plaintiffs are exploiting these people
    
    
    
    -24-
     
    
                    
       

    Other Trial Testimony

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    financially for plaintiffs' own gain and further that those who
    
    leave are persecuted and threatened with disaster.
    
         This is supported by the testimony of all experts and the
    
    presentation of the cover of The God-Men, by the American
    
    Broadcasting Company on television for a program on mind-
    
    manipulating cults, which cover contains the name of the
    
    plaintiff, Witness Lee, together with a caricature of him.
    
         17. The plaintiff Witness Lee has been exposed to hatred,
    
    contempt, ridicule, and obloquy by reason of the false and
    
    defamatory statements, and in addition his calling as a minister
    
    of the Bible for over 50 years has been severely and irreparably
    
    harmed. His reputation has also been severely and irreparably
    
    damaged. (Scott v. Times Mirror, (1919) 181 Cal. 345, 365) In
    
    addition, the plaintiff Witness Lee has suffered severe emotional
    
    distress from these charges (Douglas v. Janis, (1974) 43
    
    Cal.App.3d 931, 940 and Waite v. San Fernando Publishing Co.,
    
    (1918) 178 Cal. 303, 306) in knowing that his family and those
    
    who follow his teachings have likewise been exposed to hatred,
    
    contempt, ridicule, and obloquy, have had family relations
    
    destroyed and in some instances have lost their jobs, all because
    
    of following his teachings. Plaintiff Witness Lee has suffered
    
    further emotional distress because of the harm done to his wife,
    
    children and grandchildren from the severe and irreparable damage
    
    to Witness Lee's reputation.
    
         This is supported by the testimony of all expert witnesses,
    
    present members and the ABC-TV programs. (Ex. 84a and b)
    
    
    
    -25-
     
    
                    
       

    Other Trial Testimony

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         18.  That the sum of Five Million Dollars ($5,000,000.00) is
    
    a reasonable sum to award the plaintiff Witness Lee for the
    
    damages sustained by him by reason of all of the libelous
    
    publications involved in this action as against the defendants
    
    Neil Duddy and Schwengeler-Verlag.
    
         19. The plaintiff, the Church in Anaheim has been exposed
    
    to hatred, contempt, ridicule, and obloquy by reason of the false
    
    and defamatory statements, and has been severely and irreparably
    
    harmed (Vegod Corp. v. American Broadcasting Co., Inc., (1979) 25
    
    Cal.3d 763, 770) in its function and position as a Christian
    
    church, and in addition has suffered the loss of members and
    
    potential members and the benefits therefrom, as well as having
    
    its members and their families exposed to hatred, contempt
    
    ridicule, and obloquy.
    
         20.  That the sum of Three Million Dollars ($3,000,000.00)
    
    is a reasonable sum to award the plaintiff the Church in Anaheim
    
    for the damages sustained by it by reason of all of these
    
    libelous publications as against the defendants Neil Duddy and
    
    Schwengeler-Verlag.
    
         21.  The plaintiff William Freeman has been exposed to
    
    hatred, contempt, ridicule, and obloquy by reason of the false
    
    and defamatory statements and, in addition, his calling as a
    
    minister of the Bible for over 20 years has been severely and
    
    irreparably harmed. His reputation has been severely and
    
    irreparably damaged. In addition, the plaintiff William Freeman
    
    has suffered severe emotional distress from these charges and in
    
    
    
    -26-
     
    
                    
       

    Other Trial Testimony

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    knowing that his family and those who follow his teachings have
    
    likewise been exposed to hatred, contempt, ridicule, and obloquy.
    
    Further, the plaintiff William Freeman has suffered damages
    
    because he was the only Church in Anaheim elder named in these
    
    publications, the only church leader, other than Witness Lee,
    
    against whom all the accusations were being made, and because he
    
    was the only Local Church elder who attended Fuller Seminary
    
    during the time period mentioned in these publications.
    
    Plaintiff, William Freeman, has suffered further emotional
    
    distress because of the harm done to his wife, children and
    
    grandchildren from the severe and irreparable damage done to
    
    William Freeman's reputation.
    
         22.  That the sum of Five Hundred Thousand Dollars
    
    ($500,000.00) is a reasonable sum to award the plaintiff William
    
    Freeman for the damages sustained by reason of all of these
    
    libelous publications as against the defendants Neil Duddy and
    
    Schwengeler-Verlag.
    
         23.  The Court finds that none of the plaintiffs are public
    
    figures. (Gertz v. Welch, (1974) 418 U.S. 345, 41 L.Ed.2d 808,
    
    94 S.Ct. 2997; Hutchinson v. Proxmire, (1979) 443 U.S. 111, 135,
    
    61 L.Ed.2d 411, 431, 91 S.Ct. 2675) Therefore, under the
    
    principles of Gertz v. Welch, the plaintiffs need not prove
    
    "actual malice" (knowing falsity or reckless disregard of the
    
    truth or falsity) in order to recover compensatory damages.
    
    Nevertheless, under the principles of Gertz v. Welch, supra., in
    
    order to recover punitive damages, the plaintiffs must establish
    
    
    
    -27-
     
    
                    
       

    Other Trial Testimony

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    "actual malice." The plaintiffs indicated at the outset of this
    
    trial and hearing that they intended to establish "actual malice"
    
    and the Court is satisfied that they have done so. The evidence
    
    indicated that in almost all instances where the defendants
    
    purported to quote from Witness Lee's statements they did in fact
    
    distort and take out of context such statements by Witness Lee in
    
    order to arrive at a predetermined result or conclusion. This
    
    is supported by the testimony of the plaintiffs and the testimony
    
    of Dr. Melton, (Tr., pp 16, 18, 23, 46, 48-49), Dr. Saliba, (Tr.,
    
    pp 109, 114, 117-118, 135), Dr. Stark, (Tr., pp 162-163, 171-
    
    174), and Dr. Goetchius (Tr. pp 141-142). In addition, the
    
    evidence has established that the defendants also distorted the
    
    sociological model of religious conversion by Lofland and Stark
    
    in order to attempt to fabricate a theory of deceptive
    
    recruitment by Local Church leaders and members allegedly based
    
    upon the plaintiff Witness Lee's teachings. The testimony of Dr.
    
    Rodney Stark, one of the model's authors, convinces the Court
    
    that the distortion was deliberate and intentional. (Tr., pp
    
    162-163, 169, 171-172) (St. Amant v. Thompson (1968) 390 U.S.
    
    727, 732, 20 L.Ed.2d 262, 267-8, 88 S.Ct. 1323) Furthermore, the
    
    deposition testimony of Duddy, Alexander, Buckley and Sire
    
    confirm that the defamatory statements were published in some
    
    instances knowing they were false and in other instances with a
    
    reckless disregard of the truth or falsity thereof.
    
         24.  The Court also finds that the defendants' conduct in
    
    publishing the books and manuscript referred to above was
    
    
    
    -28-
     
    
                    
       

    Other Trial Testimony

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    intended to vex, annoy, and injure the plaintiffs and to destroy
    
    the ministries of all three plaintiffs.
    
         This is supported by evidence that SCP, Duddy's employer,
    
    and co-author, had a long standing animosity against the Local
    
    Church dating back to the early 1970s and the loss of some of its
    
    members. This was confirmed by James Miller and Jack Sparks, co-
    
    founder of SCP. (Sparks, p. 16) Dr. Melton testified that SCP
    
    came out second best in these confrontations. (Tr. pp. 48-49) In
    
    addition, documentary and deposition testimony disclosed that
    
    Inter-Varsity perceived itself to be in a competitive
    
    relationship with the Local Churches on college campuses in
    
    preaching the Gospel and because of the loss of its members to
    
    the Local Churches (Sire, Vol. 4, pp. 47-48, 58-59; Vol. 5, p.
    
    228; Ex. 85 (Former Ex. 381.240) and therefore, solicited the aid
    
    of Duddy and SCP in expanding SCP's prior publication, The God-
    
    Men I, so as to add the so-called "sociological" section which
    
    contained most of the defamatory statements referred to above
    
    (Ex. 85 (Former Ex. 383.4)). In responding to their
    
    solicitation, Duddy presented to Inter-Varsity a "sales pitch"
    
    that the book "may contribute to the Local Churches' demise."
    
    (Ex. 38)
    
         Testimony and documentary evidence also establishes that the
    
    defendant Schwengeler-Verlag had a history of being in publishing
    
    competition with the Church in Stuttgart concerning the works of
    
    Watchman Nee and also solicited the aid of Duddy and SCP to
    
    attempt to discredit the Church. Duddy knowingly and wilfully
    
    
    
    -29-
     
    
    
    
    
    Miller, 441
    
    
    
    
    See:
    Miller,
     450-452
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    See:
    So, 160-161
    
       

    Other Trial Testimony

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    joined in these endeavors to harm, if not destroy the ministries
    
    of the plaintiffs (as well as the Churches throughout the world)
    
    (Ex. 38, 40). In addition, Schwengeler-Verlag inserted in Die
    
    Sonderlehre des Witness Lee und Seiner Ortsgemeinde an
    
    advertisement for a book on Jim Jones and the Peoples Temple and
    
    correlated it with the plaintiffs by the language "Here is
    
    another book that reveals how seducers operate." This simple
    
    juxtaposition was "calculated" to remind someone "of the picture
    
    on Time Magazine of all these people lying around dead." (Tr. p.
    
    147 - Dr. Goetchius)
    
         From all of the testimony it is clear that the traditional
    
    use of the word "Cult" has changed so that we now have, since the
    
    middle 1970's, a new meaning to the word. It is now understood
    
    to mean "brainwashing of members" (Tr. p. 28), deceitful
    
    recruiting (Tr. p. 28), a mischievous group that is evil and
    
    ready to control you and take your money (Tr. p. 113), harmful to
    
    their members (Tr. p. 20), undermining American values (Tr. p.
    
    20). Cults are claimed to be just about every bad thing in the
    
    book these days, and with the pervasive images of Manson and Jim
    
    Jones hanging over us, any group that is called a Cult is
    
    immediately associated with those two people.
    
         As stated by Dr. Melton, "to call someone a Cult is the
    
    1970's equivalent of labeling them a Pinko (Communist) in the
    
    days of McCarthyism". (Tr. p. 49) Once the accusation is made,
    
    that stigma remains even if proven to be totally wrong.
    
    
    
    
    
    -30-
     
    
                    
       

    Other Trial Testimony

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         The Court agrees with the statement of the witness Dr.
    
    Rodney Stark when he stated:
    
              "If all that the  defendants  were to do
              was write a book even though  real nasty
              to Witness Lee's theology,  we  wouldn't
              be here  today  because  that is fair in
              our American Society.   You can do that.
              But  the   second   you   start  talking
              . . .  naming    names    and    events,
              discrediting events, sexual hanky-panky,
              financial hanky-panky, or indeed getting
              to a certain  point  of  quoting a man's
              theological   statements   diametrically
              opposed to what the man is saying,  then
              I  think  we  have  . . .   We  are  not
              talking about  religion,  we are talking
              about truth, we are talking about libel,
              we are talking  about  fairness,  we are
              talking about a  whole  constellation of
              things." (Tr. pp. 171-172)
    
         The damage to the plaintiffs cannot be erased by this
    
    action, but the following awards of punitive damages will
    
    vindicate the plaintiffs and deter others similarly situated from
    
    issuing further deliberate untruths about the plaintiffs. (Secord
    
    v. Schlachter, 58 Fed.Supp. 56-58 (1983)).
    
         Therefore, the Court awards punitive damages in favor of the
    
    plaintiffs and against the defendants as follows:
    
         For the plaintiff Witness Lee as against Neil T. Duddy
    
    One Million Dollars ($1,000,000.00).
    
         For the plaintiff Witness Lee as against Schwengeler-Verlag
    
    One Million Dollars ($1,000,000.00).
    
         For the plaintiff Church in Anaheim as against Neil T. Duddy
    
    Five Hundred Thousand Dollars ($500,000.00).
    
    
    
    
    
    
    -31-
     
    
                    
       

    Other Trial Testimony

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         For the plaintiff Church in Anaheim as against Schwengeler-
    
    Verlag Five Hundred Thousand Dollars ($500,000.00).
    
         For the plaintiff William T. Freeman as against Neil T.
    
    Duddy Two Hundred Thousand Dollars ($200,000.00).
    
         For the plaintiff William T. Freeman as against Schwengeler-
    
    Verlag Two Hundred Thousand Dollars ($200,000.00).
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
                            
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
                                         -32-
    
     
    
                        
       


    End of Document
    Copyright © 2004. DCP. All Rights Reserved.

    Categories:
    Case Outcomes, Defense, The God-Men