To responsibly bring a court action for fraud against a defendant, generally, involves specific legal considerations. When the defendant is a Church, special considerations apply.
The First Amendment to the Constitution of the United States generally precludes government interference into matters of religion and religious practice.
In its own defense, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormon Corporate Empire) has expended staggering resources, originating from its defrauded tithe payers, to promote a warped interpretation of the First Amendment provisions of the United States Constitution. Their interpretation follows a certain specious logic that is fundamentally flawed at its root but heavily promoted throughout social media, mainstream media, judicial backchannels, and political circles by well-funded misinformation campaigns.
These defensive misinformation campaigns include heavily infiltrated elements of the Ex-Mormon community who quietly serve the agenda of the Mormon Corporate Empire while masquerading as friends and supporters of the cause of Ex-Mormons.
Simply put, the Mormon Corporate Empire argues through its legal representatives....
(who now profit from the defense of what some might call the spiritual equivalent to date rape and the perversion of relevant constitutional principles to justify it)
...that to arrive at a conclusion that a fraud has taken place, an examination of the truth of matters of its religious doctrines and beliefs would be required, but is prohibited by the First Amendment.
Accordingly, legal counsel for the Mormon Corporate Empire argues, in effect, that the fraudulent actions of the Mormon Corporate Empire are exempt from judicial scrutiny on Constitutional grounds, no matter how otherwise offensive and subversive of the very public interest that the Judiciary has been empowered to protect.
The insidiously subtle and specious device that the Mormon Corporate Empire, through its legal counsel, seeks to poison the relevant consciousness with, is the calculated obfuscation of public and judicial attention to a most fundamental and key consideration in a rush to defend "religious liberty" from the assaults of the unwashed. The point they would have the court and the world overlook, is that the presumed religious exemption from scrutiny, afforded by the First Amendment, reasonably applies uniquely to religious beliefs that are actually sincerely held. It does not reasonably apply to professed religious beliefs that are merely professed as a cover for fraudulent enterprise and not sincerely held.
Accordingly, questions about the sincerity of beliefs professed is not only a legitimate question of fact, but one that the court cannot arbitrarily brush aside or presume to determine on the basis of its own assumptions, skepticism, or indifference to the public interests impacted by the relevance of questions about sincerity in religious representations. It is a triable question of fact, when found to reasonably apply and properly raised. In the Gaddy case, it has most certainly and unmistakably been raised and demonstrated to reasonably apply.
In any general fraud case, it is not sufficient to merely bring an allegation of fraud before the court. Certain standards must be met for the case to survive a Motion to Dismiss by the defendant. You can't just say, "Hey! They defrauded me!". The particular details of the fraud that took place must be articulated with sufficient specificity to make it possible for the court to assess, based on a working presumption of the accuracy of your allegations, that the specific actions described do constitute fraud, and that the alleged injuries would warrant compensation if found to be accurate.
This does not constitute a finding in your favor by the court, but merely a finding that the case has been presented with sufficient clarity to warrant a trial.
In the Gaddy case (Gaddy v LDS), since it is a case against a Church, First Amendment considerations also apply. So, it is not sufficient for the court to simply determine that the fraud related allegations are sufficient to warrant a trial. In addition, the court must consider whether a First Amendment defense has merit. To have merit, the First Amendment defense must be properly raised, and, if freedom of religion exemptions are asserted, they must be rooted in sincere beliefs that have not been successfully challenged.
Much like fraud allegations, allegations that a religious organization does not sincerely believe its own doctrines and teachings must be presented with sufficient articulation of relevant factual allegations to satisfy legal standards that apply. The relevant factual allegations must be sufficient from which the court may conclude that, if correct, they (the alleged facts) demonstrate overt conduct, by the religious organization, that defies their own professed beliefs and teachings.
If the court finds that the alleged conduct of the religious organization is presented with sufficient clarity for the court to understand what happened and that what happened was in defiance of the Church's own teachings, it cannot reasonably dismiss the legitimacy of a factual inquiry into the sincerity of the Church's beliefs. So, this question is, thus, a triable question of fact.
With both the legal standards for the complaint on the questions of fraud and sincerity met, a case against a Church would have to proceed in a unique way.
First, a trial must involve the questions of sincerity. If it is found that the Church did not sincerely hold the religious beliefs upon which its First Amendment defense are rooted, the First Amendment defense fails, and the questions of fraud may be considered in trial.
If it is found that the Church did sincerely hold the beliefs upon which its First Amendment defense are based, the First Amendment defense stands as a bar to scrutiny of the fraud allegations that are rooted in questions about the veracity of the Church's doctrines or beliefs.
In the fraud case against the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, (Gaddy v LDS) experts find that the Church has unquestionably exhibited overt conduct that is contrary to their professed teachings, and the reality of such demonstrable hypocrisy has been well documented and adequately presented to the court with appropriate and relevant assertions.
Core to the outwardly professed doctrines and beliefs of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day saints are the key doctrinal beliefs taught about their own place, relevance, and priesthood authority in the World to act in the name of God.
The very existence of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day saints has been taught for generations to be uniquely required by God, for the purpose of restoring and maintaining the integrity of God's "Plan of Salvation".
The "Plan of Salvation" taught by the Church absolutely requires the correct contextual presentation of "gospel truths" and "gospel covenants" to God's children on earth, and the exercise of "free agency" by God's children, in accepting and adhering to gospel truths and covenants taught in honesty, without coercion or manipulation by duly authorized and appointed officiators of the priesthood of God which is uniquely endowed on the officials of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints to the exclusion of all others.
As such doctrinal beliefs are unquestionably the beliefs and the teachings of the LDS Church, they are integral to and inseparable from the very point, purpose, and mission of the Church, its unique priesthood authority, and its very existence as a religion at all.
By the Church's own admission as found in its own scriptures, when the priesthood of God is abused or misused, "the heavens withdraw themselves; the spirit of the Lord is grieved; and when it is withdrawn, Amen to the priesthood or authority of that man"Doctrine and Covenants, Section 121:37
In the Gaddy case, the court has been presented both with assertions and substantial basis for the same assertions, to the effect that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has, for generations, knowingly and willfully made substantial and material misrepresentations to its proselytes in an effort to manipulate the outcome of faith-based conclusions about the Church.
These willfully inaccurate representations constitute overt conduct that flies in the face of (defies) their own doctrinal precepts on the very point of their own existence as a religion. (The integrity of the Plan of Salvation and its key principles including free agency, honesty, and the legitimacy of divine judgment of the unmanipulated or coerced choices of mankind). As such is the case, questions about the sincerity of their own professed beliefs, as a religion, cannot be reasonably overlooked.
When a Church defines its own existence and purpose to be rooted in certain conditions, those conditions must be taken seriously. They, by its own definition, become a legitimate test upon which to assess the legitimacy of its very claim to be a religion.
If, by its own declaration, an organization that has professed to be a Church, invalidates its own legitimacy as a Church, such cannot be overlooked. When an organization that is found to seek the cover of religious based constitutional protection from accountability for its demonstrable malfeasance and fraud, is found not to be a legitimate religion, it cannot reasonably avail itself of Constitutional exemptions from scrutiny of its conduct that apply to religious beliefs that are sincerely held and are afforded to legitimate religions under the Constitution.
The notion that the legitimacy of an organization's very claim to be a religion should be considered beyond the purview of a rational judiciary is at once inconsistent with prior rulings, inconsistent with rational public policy, patently insane, and indefensible.
In the opinion of this writer, anyone who professes or defends such a notion, or fails to grasp its folly, demonstrates themselves, by that very indifference, to be morally, intellectually, spiritually, and socially inferior human beings who are unfit for public service, unqualified for relevant public discourse, and certainly unfit to profess to be duly authorized representatives of a just God.