Judgment has been entered in High Court claim no. BL-2017-000101 against the Defendant Laurence Roy Moffitt (a.k.a. Laurie Moffitt) for copyright infringement, misuse of private information and breach of confidence in respect of the address books containing the names and addresses of the members of the Plymouth Brethren Christian Church. Permanent injunctions have been granted. Mr Moffitt has been ordered to pay damages and to pay the Claimants’ legal costs on the indemnity basis.
Friday, 18 July 2014
Five Plymouth Brethren meeting halls granted charitable status
The long legal battle over the PDT registration – it had initially applied in February 2009 – resulted in it agreeing to changes in its governing documents that affected how it dealt with disciplinary matters, non-members and other issues.
In common with the PDT, all five of the new charities made changes to their governing documents, which in all cases are more than 20 years old, shortly before registration.
In the document outlining the commission’s decision, the regulator noted allegations of harsh disciplinary practices for minor transgressions and the ostracising of former members. The commission said the PBCC acknowledged "past mistakes in relation to its disciplinary practices".
The PBCC has 95 gospel halls and churches in the UK. Some, including the Horsforth Gospel Hall Trust, had charity status before the Charities Act 2006, which removed the assumption of public benefit for religious organisations, thus making it more difficult for organisations such as PBCC halls to become charities.
A spokesman for the PBCC did not respond to Third Sector’s request for comment by press deadlines.
Benjamin James, a partner at the law firm McCarthy Denning, said: "I think that once the Preston Down Trust decision was made, it opened it up for the other gospel halls to make applications. As long as they follow the Preston Down principles, I think the commission would have a great deal of difficulty turning them down – but of course the question is whether they actually are following them in practice."