Former Scientologist forced to have abortion wins major legal victory against church
It took seven years, but a former Scientologist will see her lawsuit against the church — which she says kept her captive and forced her to have an abortion — go to trial, KABC reports.
Laura Ann DeCrescenzo, who began doing volunteer work for the Church of Scientology at the age of six, received good news this week when Los Angeles Superior Court Judge John Doyle denied a motion by lawyers for the Church of Scientology International to dismiss her case.
DeCrescenzo is suing the church for false imprisonment, intentional infliction of emotional distress, unfair business practices and wage-and-hour violations, as well as claiming that the church coerced into having an abortion at the age of 17.
According to DeCrescenzo, she was kept a virtual prisoner by the church for years.
“I wasn’t allowed to speak with my family. You’re not allowed to have more than twenty dollars on you at any given time,” explained DeCrescenzo. “You’re not allowed to go anywhere without another person. You’re watched 24/7.”
DeCrescenzo says she remained a member of the church for years after the abortion, stating that church officials psychologically abused her after she became pregnant, telling her that she would be left homeless and unable to find a job and denied the ability to ever see her husband again.
According to the woman, she finally escaped the church in 2004 when she pretended to attempt suicide by swallowing a cup of bleach.
She abandoned the church for good four years later.
Watch the video below via KABC: