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Scientology Seeks To Gut Leah Remini’s Harassment Suit With A Free Speech Strategy – Update

UPDATE, 6:05 PM: Scientology is claiming the only reason the David Miscavige-led organization has ever attacked and defamed Leah Remini is because she attacked them first – and they want the Scientology and the Aftermath host’s suit against them gutted in the name of the First Amendment.

“Refusing to remain silent in the face of the threats and violence Plaintiff inspired, the Church fought back,” Scientology’s lawyers assert in a sprawling and expected motion to the strike filed late last week in Los Angeles Superior Court. “When stripped of the allegations that depend on nonactionable statements, protected petitioning, and are outside the statute of limitations, there is virtually nothing left,” the heavily Remini-quoting document from Winston & Strawn LLP and Jeffer Mangels Butler & Mitchell LLP adds.

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“The anti-SLAPP statute demands that this frontal assault on First Amendment protected speech and conduct be stricken,” the barbed response states in a strategy the controversial Church has used repeatedly in the past in other legal actions.

Coming off a successful October 18 move (see below) by defendants Scientology International, Miscavige and Church corporation the Religious Technology Center to response together to Remini’s piercing initial and now amended complaint, the tone and language of the Church’s more recent motion is very similar to what they said about their strategy against the King of Queens star earlier this month.

As the separate civil trial against Scientology and the now incarcerated Danny Masterson, who was convicted of two counts of rape earlier this year, for harassment inches towards its September 2025 start date, the Church have asked for a DTLA hearing on November 28 on Remini’s case and their motion.

Leah Remini
Leah Remini

PREVIOUSLY, OCT. 18 AM: Scientology says that Leah Remini’s harassment suit against her former Church and its leader David Miscavige should be DOA thanks to the First Amendment.

“Defendants determined that the vast majority of the allegations in the 68-page, 310 paragraph long FAC implicate Defendants’ constitutionally protected speech or activity, “ Scientology’s Winston & Strawn LLP and Jeffer Mangels Butler & Mitchell LLP lawyers spelled out in a memorandum filed Tuesday in LA Superior Court. “Each cause of action incorporates all prior allegations, and each action depends – in whole or in part – on allegations containing protected activity within the anti-SLAPP statute,” they add.

Defendants Scientology International, Miscavige and Church corporation the Religious Technology Center will be seeking permission this morning from Judge Randolph Hammock to submit a combination brief of support for an anti-SLAPP motion to strike. “Despite the length of the First Amended Complaint and the volume of its allegations, CSI and RTC do not seek to increase the total number of pages allotted to them by statute. Defendants seek only to file a single consolidated 30-page brief,” the defendants asserts (read Scientology’s memo to the court here).

RELATED: Scientology & Danny Masterson Harassment Trial Date Set

In a short October 17 filing of her own, Scientology and the Aftermath host Remini said that she thought 30 pages is “excessive” but would defer “to the Court’s judgment as to the appropriate length of a coordinated filing and, if the Court grants Defendants’ request, Plaintiff asks for leave to file a coordinated response of an equal number of pages.”

Not far from the criminal court building where Remini and others on September 7 watched prominent Scientologist Danny Masterson sentenced to 30 years behind bars on multiple rape charges Judge Hammock will hear arguments from both sides later today.

RELATED: Read Danny Masterson Victims’ Statements From Sentencing: “Our Lives Were Destroyed”

Remini’s August 30 FAC reiterates the King of Queens alum’s earlier allegations in the original August 2 filing of retaliation by the celebrity-heavy Church for her public lambasting of its policy and personnel. Remini also says that she has been the victim of various acts of credit card fraud, attacked and mocked by online trolls since the complaint was filed. In pushback to the suit, Scientology accused Remini of being “a bigot” and made “threats of and actual violence against the Church.” Laughably, the Church also suggested Remini “should consider emigrating to Russia.”

This week, Scientology doubled down on Remini in the court docket.

“This case concerns a more than decade-long campaign by Plaintiff against her former church, the Church of Scientology,” they harshly said of the high profile former member. “Over the past decade, she has made a lucrative career spewing hate and inspiring violence against the Church of Scientology, its parishioners, and the ecclesiastical leader of the Scientology religion,” the defendants proclaimed.

RELATED: Scientology Goes Off On Leah Remini As “Horrible Person” & “Bigot” In Response To Her Harassment Suit

“She has done this through her autobiography, a cable television show, podcasts, and appearances on broadcast television and radio,” Scientology added in the October 17 filing. “She has used those platforms to call the Church ‘pure f*cking evil’ and its parishioners as ‘sick assh*les,’ ‘f*cking like body snatchers,’ and ‘morally depleted,’ and even to falsely accuse the ecclesiastical leader of the religion of unidentified ‘crimes.’ CSI has, and continues to, respond to Plaintiff’s slander in various public fora.”

As stated in the original nine-claim complaint of early August and the FAC alleging even greater harassment that followed a few weeks later, Remini is seeking unspecified damages in her legal action. The actress/activist is also hoping the court will give her injunctive relief “to end Scientology’s policies against Suppressive Persons so that current and former Scientologists, and others who wish to expose Scientology’s abuses, including journalists and advocates, may feel free to hold Scientology accountable without the fear that they will be threatened into silence.”

Remini’s case is not the only active harassment action the Church is facing in court.

Judge Upinder Kalra on September 26 lifted the long stay on the 2019-filed harassment case against Masterson and the Church of Scientology from a series of former Church members and their families.

The plaintiffs in that matter claim harassment and more by Masterson and Scientology after the plaintiffs and their families went to the LAPD with sexual assault accusations against the former That 70’s Show actor. All three Jane Does in the civil case, in which Scientology unsuccessfully tried to get the Supreme Court to intervene last year, are former members of the Church. They also were participants in the criminal case against now incarcerated Masterson.

With volumes of discovery and more still to be waded through, the trial for that harassment case is tentatively set for September 22, 2025.

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