Decide dismisses components of Leah Remini’s Scientology harassment lawsuit – Nationwide

A decide within the Los Angeles County Superior Court docket on Tuesday dismissed parts of Leah Remini‘s civil defamation and harassment lawsuit towards the Church of Scientology, to which the actor previously belonged.

In a prolonged, combined ruling, Decide Randolph Hammock struck down vital parts of the lawsuit on the grounds of American First Modification rights.

Within the virtually 40-page ruling, which was shared by Deadline, the decide threw out sure defamation claims below California’s anti-SLAPP statute, which protects free speech to do with issues of public curiosity.

Hammock’s ruling, nonetheless, nonetheless allowed for Remini’s allegations of stalking, harassment and surveillance by the church to proceed.

In a press release to International Information, the Church of Scientology known as the decide’s choice to strike sure parts of the lawsuit a “victory in court docket towards Leah Remini.”

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“This can be a resounding victory for the Church and free speech — Remini’s grievance was gutted,” the group wrote.

The church mentioned it is going to be pursuing lawyer’s charges from Remini, which they’re entitled to use for below the anti-SLAPP statute. Remini can even apply for lawyer’s charges, ought to she select to.

Remini has not commented publicly on the combined ruling.

Leah Remini’s Scientology lawsuit

Remini filed a lawsuit towards the church and its chief, David Miscavige, in August 2023. She accused Scientology of utilizing “mob-style operations and assaults” to harass her since she defected from the religion in 2013.

The lawsuit is searching for unspecified damages for the hurt she claims Scientology inflicted on her and her profession.

When Remini initially filed her lawsuit, the church known as the allegations “pure lunacy” and accused Remini of “spreading falsehoods and hate speech.”

What was faraway from Leah Remini’s lawsuit?

Remini’s lawsuit claims she is the sufferer of Scientology’s “Truthful Sport” ways, which makes her an open goal for harassment, each on-line and in-person.

Prior to now, the church has created a web site disparaging Remini in over 10 completely different articles that decision her all the pieces from a “bigot” to “racist” and “pro-rape.”

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The decide known as these cases, in addition to others, “parody,” specifically when Scientology circulated doctored images of Remini carrying an “I (coronary heart) rapists” T-shirt after she testified within the 2022 rape trial of director Paul Haggis.

Click to play video: 'Leah Remini defends director Paul Haggis amid sexual assault allegations'

Leah Remini defends director Paul Haggis amid sexual assault allegations

Hammock mentioned the web posts, “whereas extremely offensive and inappropriate, can solely be deemed parody.”

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“Nobody viewing these statements might take them actually,” he wrote.

Decide Hammock decided the church’s feedback about Remini are honest below free speech legal guidelines as a result of Scientology is “a high-profile entity talking on a high-profile determine.”

The decide mentioned each Remini and the church have been “aware of, or provoked by,” each other’s verbal assaults.

“When seen in context, the First Amended Criticism plainly demonstrates that the alleged statements Defendants made about Plaintiff on-line implicate a broader public dispute over Plaintiff’s relationship with Scientology,” the decide wrote in his ruling. “The web posts are themselves part of the general public’s curiosity in Plaintiff and Scientology.”

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What remains to be permitted in Leah Remini’s lawsuit?

A few of Remini’s defamation claims nonetheless stand.

These allegations embrace Scientology-made statements that Remini was verbally abusive to her personal daughter, that she “ransacked” her grandmother’s residence and that Remini refused to pay for her father’s most cancers therapies.

Remini can also nonetheless current to the court docket her claims that she is being stalked by Scientology operatives. These allegations embrace experiences that an unknown particular person drove their automotive into the gates of her neighbourhood group and smashed her mailbox with a hammer in an try to steal her mail.

Scientology tried to argue that any surveillance of Remini was accomplished as a sanctioned “pre-litigation” exercise, although the decide didn’t agree.

“The court docket sees no public curiosity within the surveillance of personal residents — even celebrities — below an unsupported suspicion that litigation could happen at some later time,” Hammock wrote.

Remini’s tortious interference allegations have been additionally permitted.

The actor alleged members of the church repeatedly harassed a number of colleagues and interfered in her employment contracts. Remini claimed Scientology operatives harassed staff of iHeartMedia and the distribution platform AudioBoom, each of which dealt with her podcast Scientology: Truthful Sport, till the businesses ended her contract.

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Remini’s lawsuit towards the Church of Scientology is about to start on Oct. 27, 2025.

Leah Remini, a ‘suppressive particular person’

Since leaving the church in 2013, Remini has been labelled a “suppressive particular person,” the identify typically given to defectors who, in keeping with Scientology founder L. Ron Hubbard’s philosophy, search to quash the betterment of a bunch, on this case the church.

Remini’s attorneys tried to acquire a sweeping judicial order that might stop the church from labelling individuals suppressive individuals and making victims of “Truthful Sport” ways. The decide turned down the order for Constitutional causes, although famous the court docket “needn’t subject declarations merely telling events to obey the regulation.”

After submitting her preliminary lawsuit towards the church final yr, Remini mentioned she skilled “continued, aggressive harassment.”

In September 2023, Remini amended her lawsuit and claimed the harassment towards her has “escalated to a a lot better diploma than ever earlier than.”

Remini mentioned she, in addition to her pals, household {and professional} colleagues, have all been targets of harassment, together with alleged stalking and bank card fraud.

Regardless, Remini has continued her vocal criticism of Scientology. On Thursday, the actor requested her followers on X (previously Twitter) to donate to The Aftermath Basis, a company that gives assist to Scientologists who wish to depart the religion.

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Remini mentioned the inspiration was compelled to take away an adversarial billboard after “threats and strain ways” from the church, regardless of the group allegedly having a one-year contract for the billboard. (It hasn’t been confirmed that Scientology was chargeable for the eliminated billboard.)

“Taking this billboard down is unacceptable and simply one other instance of a significant company caving to a harmful totalitarian cult that’s abusing its members each day as a matter of coverage,” Remini wrote.

The King of Queens actor joined the Church of Scientology as a baby in 1979 however left greater than three many years later.

Since separating from Scientology, Remini has constantly criticized the non secular group and Miscavige for critical abuses of energy.

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In 2016, she launched the documentary collection Leah Remini: Scientology and the Aftermath, which she produced and co-created. The collection gained three Emmy Awards.

Remini additionally mentioned she was “relieved” to see “harmful rapist” and famous movie star Scientologist Danny Masterson sentenced to 30 years to life in jail for 2 counts of forcible rape.

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