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Author Topic: Mormons accused of fraud  (Read 2231 times)

DavidMcCann

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Mormons accused of fraud
« on: February 05, 2014, 01:42:35 pm »
An ex-Mormon has claimed that asking members to pay tithes on the basis of the unsubstantiated teachings such as the Book of Mormon is a breach of the Fraud Act and he's applied for permission to bring a private prosecution. A district judge has summoned the head of the church to appear or face an arrest warrant. I wonder if the USA would extradite him? Great fun!
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/religion/10619538/Head-of-Mormon-church-Thomas-Monson-summoned-by-British-magistrates-court-over-Adam-and-Eve-teaching.html
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HeartShadow

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Re: Mormons accused of fraud
« Reply #1 on: February 05, 2014, 04:14:06 pm »
Quote from: DavidMcCann;138908
An ex-Mormon has claimed that asking members to pay tithes on the basis of the unsubstantiated teachings such as the Book of Mormon is a breach of the Fraud Act and he's applied for permission to bring a private prosecution. A district judge has summoned the head of the church to appear or face an arrest warrant. I wonder if the USA would extradite him? Great fun!
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/religion/10619538/Head-of-Mormon-church-Thomas-Monson-summoned-by-British-magistrates-court-over-Adam-and-Eve-teaching.html

 
As a USian, that is SO DAMN weird.  Like, I can't wrap my head around it weird.

I can't imagine there would be an extradition REQUEST, but I can damn well bet the US wouldn't honor it, because it would go against OUR laws.  You're allowed to have beliefs as batshit as you want, and that includes the belief that you need to pay to belong to the batshit beliefs.

The idea that one can insist that religious beliefs be FACTUAL .... wtf?

MadZealot

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Re: Mormons accused of fraud
« Reply #2 on: February 05, 2014, 05:15:07 pm »
Quote from: HeartShadow;138928
The idea that one can insist that religious beliefs be FACTUAL .... wtf?


The burden of proof would be damn heavy, wouldn't it?
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Ocelot

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Re: Mormons accused of fraud
« Reply #3 on: February 05, 2014, 06:23:02 pm »
Quote from: MadZealot;138935
The burden of proof would be damn heavy, wouldn't it?

 
Just imagine the witness list for the defense!
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HeartShadow

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Re: Mormons accused of fraud
« Reply #4 on: February 05, 2014, 06:45:04 pm »
Quote from: Ocelot;138958
Just imagine the witness list for the defense!

 
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Sage

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Re: Mormons accused of fraud
« Reply #5 on: February 05, 2014, 07:10:02 pm »
Quote from: HeartShadow;138961
"so sir, exactly how DOES one subpoena a god?"

 
There's a movie that came out a few years ago where a fella tries to sue the devil... and Satan shows up.
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Re: Mormons accused of fraud
« Reply #6 on: February 05, 2014, 07:20:50 pm »
Quote from: HeartShadow;138928
As a USian, that is SO DAMN weird.  Like, I can't wrap my head around it weird.

I can't imagine there would be an extradition REQUEST, but I can damn well bet the US wouldn't honor it, because it would go against OUR laws.  You're allowed to have beliefs as batshit as you want, and that includes the belief that you need to pay to belong to the batshit beliefs.

The idea that one can insist that religious beliefs be FACTUAL .... wtf?

 
Yeah, this would set REALLY bad legal precedent.
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Re: Mormons accused of fraud
« Reply #7 on: February 05, 2014, 07:25:56 pm »
Quote from: DavidMcCann;138908
A district judge has summoned the head of the church to appear or face an arrest warrant. I wonder if the USA would extradite him? Great fun!

I doubt it. On First Amendment issues (as I recall) the bar is very  high for foreign court orders -- basically it has to be a crime or actionable here or the foreign court order will not be enforceable.
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DavidMcCann

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Re: Mormons accused of fraud
« Reply #8 on: February 07, 2014, 02:11:56 pm »
Quote from: HeartShadow;138928
I can't imagine there would be an extradition REQUEST, but I can damn well bet the US wouldn't honor it, because it would go against OUR laws.  You're allowed to have beliefs as batshit as you want, and that includes the belief that you need to pay to belong to the batshit beliefs.

The plaintiff is not asking that religious beliefs be proved to be true, but that they should not be demonstrably false (e.g. the Book of Mormon) if you use them as a justification for asking for cash.

Under our extradition treaty, the US has sought the extradition of people who've never been there for actions which are not criminal in the UK e.g. Gary McKinnon. They'd have got him, if public fury hadn't forced the government to declare him not fit enough to go.
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Re: Mormons accused of fraud
« Reply #9 on: February 07, 2014, 02:20:35 pm »
Quote from: DavidMcCann;139124
The plaintiff is not asking that religious beliefs be proved to be true, but that they should not be demonstrably false (e.g. the Book of Mormon) if you use them as a justification for asking for cash.

Under our extradition treaty, the US has sought the extradition of people who've never been there for actions which are not criminal in the UK e.g. Gary McKinnon. They'd have got him, if public fury hadn't forced the government to declare him not fit enough to go.


Yeah, but hacking is a hilariously overblown offense that the government panics over. Believing in things that science considers demonstrably false is pretty much a requirement to be elected to office in parts of the US.
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Re: Mormons accused of fraud
« Reply #10 on: February 07, 2014, 05:31:14 pm »
Quote from: HeartShadow;138928
...snip  that includes the belief that you need to pay to belong to the batshit beliefs.

As one who grew up in the Mormon church, nobody "needs" to pay to belong. It is recommended one pay tithing to receive full spiritual benefits, much as one who is Pagan-inclined/affiliated/believing/etc gives offerings to hir Gods or Goddesses.
« Last Edit: February 07, 2014, 05:31:48 pm by Kelly »
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Re: Mormons accused of fraud
« Reply #11 on: February 07, 2014, 08:49:58 pm »
Quote from: DavidMcCann;139124
Under our extradition treaty, the US has sought the extradition of people who've never been there for actions which are not criminal in the UK e.g. Gary McKinnon. They'd have got him, if public fury hadn't forced the government to declare him not fit enough to go.

In the US, the Constitution trumps the treaty. It's one of those strange things people in many other countries have problems understanding because most countries have easier to modify constitutions.
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Jack

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Re: Mormons accused of fraud
« Reply #12 on: February 07, 2014, 08:52:42 pm »
Quote from: Kelly;139143
As one who grew up in the Mormon church, nobody "needs" to pay to belong. It is recommended one pay tithing to receive full spiritual benefits, much as one who is Pagan-inclined/affiliated/believing/etc gives offerings to hir Gods or Goddesses.

 
Good point, Kelly. Tithing is widespread in Christian tradition - Catholics do it too. I'm pretty sure it's how most churches support themselves.
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Re: Mormons accused of fraud
« Reply #13 on: February 08, 2014, 03:06:54 am »
Quote from: Jack;139160
Good point, Kelly. Tithing is widespread in Christian tradition - Catholics do it too. I'm pretty sure it's how most churches support themselves.

 
This is why it would set a really dangerous legal precedent.  Tithing of some kind or another is standard for almost every Christian denomination, and for many Jewish ones--hell, a lot of synagogues sell tickets for High Holy Days services, to stay solvent.  Even a lot of clergy are expected to tithe back some of what they're paid.  And bringing offerings to the temple is standard for Hindus and Buddhists, too.  If all of those organizations are supposed to provide legal proof of their spiritual truths or be sued for accepting offerings and tithing, they're just plain done for.
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Re: Mormons accused of fraud
« Reply #14 on: February 08, 2014, 05:30:16 pm »
Quote from: DavidMcCann;138908
A district judge has summoned the head of the church to appear or face an arrest warrant.


Everyone else has established that the U.S. won't comply; this is the part that I'm incredulous about, much as HeartShadow is. Who is this district judge? He should have summarily dismissed this out of hand.
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