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Articles on Jehovah's Witnesses and the Watchtower Society
On June 20th 2012 Judge Robert D. McGuinnes ruled that the $1 billion in real estate assets of the Watch Tower Society are to be frozen pending the outcome of the Watchtower Society’s appeal against the judgment of $21 million in punitive damages in the Candace Conti case. The outcome of the appeal is estimated to take up two years.
Our first reaction was: “This has huge consequences for the financial freedom and clout of the legal entity of the Jehovah’s Witnesses, The Watchtower Bible and Tract Society of New York, because for the next two years, they cannot buy, sell or exchange property without first seeking the permission of the Alameda County Superior Court.”
Silentlambs brought this to our attention:
There have been many comments and some articles written about the freezing of one billion dollars of Watchtower assets following the loss of the Candace Conti court case. Those that have commented on this are technically true in part but in the typical court proceedings this is just a matter of the regular filing of documents to protect the settlement for the plaintiff.
It is considered a typical move in a court proceeding to freeze the assets when the defendant had yet to obtain a bond to cover the settlement. It was apparent WT did not expect to lose and simply were not prepared for this. So the Judge doing his job made the ruling contingent upon WT obtaining a bond to protect the settlement for Ms Conti. The minute the Watchtower obtains the bond the all assets are free and clear to be used any way they wish. So this looks like more of a procedural matter. WT will obtain a bond in a week or so and the order will in a matter of typical court procedure be removed. [...]
So the real estate assets of the Watch Tower Society are only frozen for only a week or so and this ruling will not have huge consequences for the financial freedom and clout of the Watchtower Society.
In a press release on jw-media.org, the Watchtower Society states the following:
Jehovah’s Witnesses will appeal the decision of a California jury in a court case involving alleged acts of child abuse.
The jury rendered a multimillion-dollar damage award to a woman who claimed that she was molested as a child by a member of a local congregation of Jehovah’s Witnesses. At trial, the plaintiff claimed that the policies of the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society contributed to the alleged abuse. “We respectfully disagree with the jury’s decision. This is the first time that an organization was found responsible for the alleged misdeeds of a member who held no position of leadership or authority,” states James McCabe, an attorney representing Watchtower in the case. “We are very sorry for whatever harm this young lady may have suffered. However, the organization is not responsible. We now look to the Court of Appeals for a thorough review of this case.
Here are the court-documents:
The Alameda County Superior Court jury on June 14 2012 awarded $21 million in punitive damages to the 26 years old plaintiff Candace Conti who was a victim of sexual child abuse while growing up as a Jehovah’s Witness. The $21 million are on top of the $7 million in compensatory damages the court jury awarded her a day before. Candace Conti is a San Joaquin County resident.
The legal entity of the Jehovah’s Witnesses, The Watchtower Bible and Tract Society of New York, is responsible for the entire punitive damages amount and 40 percent of the compensatory damages, said Rick Simons, attorney for Candace Conti. Sixty percent of the compensatory damages was assessed against Jonathan David Kendrick, the man accused of abusing Candace Conti. Read more…
An extensive article on Jehovah’s Witness Beliefs
The beliefs and practices of Jehovah’s Witnesses are based on the Bible teachings of its founder, Charles Taze Russell and his successors, Joseph Franklin Rutherford and Nathan Homer Knorr. Since 1976 the beliefs of Jehovah’s Witnesses have been based on decisions made at closed meetings of the Governing Body of Jehovah’s Witnesses. The Jehovah’s Witness beliefs are propagated through The Watchtower magazine and other publications of Jehovah’s Witnesses, and at conventions and congregation meetings. Members of the Jehovah’s Witnesses are expected to adhere to all such doctrines without criticism or dissent. Read more…
Pop star and ex-Jehovah’s Witness Michael Jackson has died at the age of 50 after suffering a cardiac arrest at his Los Angeles home on June 25 2009. Michael was rushed to UCLA Medical Centre in a coma but doctors were unable to revive him. He was just weeks away from beginning his comeback tour in London.
On Watchtower Information Service articles about Michael Jackson were always very popular. Especially that Michael reportedly became a Muslim was greeted with applause by visitors from the Islamic world (see the comments in previous articles on Watchtower Information Service). Read more…
144,000 has a religious significance for Jehovah’s Witnesses because they believe this small number represents the total number of humans who have a “heavenly hope” and will reign with Christ in heaven. Those with this “heavenly hope” take part of the symbols during the annual celebration of the “Lord’s Evening Meal”, or “Memorial of Christ’s Death”. Every year the Watchtower Society publishes the number of these “Memorial Partakers”. Read more…
A Jehovah’s Witness pedophile was spared prison despite admitting carrying out a string of sex attacks on young children.
Michael Porter, 38, used his trusted position as a ministerial servant to indulge his habits as a pedophile. One of his victims was an 18-month-old baby. Read more…
Sixteen sexual abuse victims have settled nine lawsuits in which they said they were sexually abused as children by Jehovah’s Witnesses members and leaders.
Settlements were reached in late February and early March, according to court records obtained by Bill Bowen of SilentLambs.org. Now with video of press conference! Read more…
In 2005 we already reported the possibility that Michael Jackson had decided to convert to Islam. Jermaine Jackson, Michael’s brother, who converted to Islam in 1989 said it is likely that Michael Jackson will convert to Islam. Read more…
Jean-Claude Lavoie, a 26 year old Canadian Jehovah’s Witness, died in December 2006 after refusing a blood transfusion while being treated for an intestinal tumour, the Canadian TQS television network reported.
Former Jehovah’s Witness Jonathan Lavoie, Jean-Claude’s brother, has since launched an internet petition (written in French) calling on the federal government to make it illegal for a person to refuse treatment on religious grounds.
A judge has ruled that Tawnya Nissen, a 27 year old comatose woman, may receive a blood transfusion, despite her Jehovah’s Witness husband’s objections that blood transfusions are against God’s will.
Tawnya has been unconscious since July 31, when she collapsed because of a bad reaction to a diet drug. Doctors told the family that she might need a blood transfusion if she had to undergo a tracheotomy or other emergency surgery. Tawnya has not needed a blood transfusion, and her condition has improved. But she remains unconscious, and her father — who is not a Jehovah’s Witness — asked a judge to give him, rather than her husband Chris Nissen, the power to decide on her treatment. Read more…