U.S. District Judge Samuel Der-Yeghiayan said Monday Hale’s group is liable for more than $450,000 plus interest in attorney’s fees after losing the lawsuit brought by the Oregon-based TE-TA-MA Foundation in 2000.
It is the same lawsuit that first embroiled U.S. District Judge Joan Humphrey Lefkow with Hale’s former World Church of the Creator, now named the Creativity Movement. The foundation had trademarked the “Church of the Creator” name and went to court to stop Hale’s group from using it.
Lefkow ruled in Hale’s favor but was reversed by a higher court and ordered to issue fines against Hale for every day his group didn’t comply. Lefkow later became a target when Hale solicited a government informant to kill her. Hale was convicted of murder solicitation last year and last month was sentenced to 40 years in prison. He’s appealing his conviction while being held in a Colorado maximum security prison.
‘Beyond the pale’
The issue of attorneys fees also made its way to a federal appeals court, which found Hale’s group liable because of accusations that his members left threatening phone messages for opposing attorneys as the case was litigated.
“By any reasonable measure, the World Church’s actions were egregious and beyond the pale of acceptable litigation conduct,” Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals judges wrote.
Hale said in court records that imposing fines would be a “travesty.”