Two important lawsuits charging The Way International (TWI) leaders with sexual assault were filed in 2000. Portions of the text of the lawsuits are quoted below in order to give readers a clearer picture of the type of sexual behavior which TWI leadership is accused of (the suits made a variety of other allegations as well).

The suit filed by Paul and Mrs. Allen was the most influential because of the visibility brought to it by Paul Allen's "Waydale" web site (now closed), and because of the Allens' staff positions before leaving TWI. The Allens received compensation from TWI when the case was settled out of court in November, 2000. Parker received compensation when the suit was settled out of court in 2002.

The lawsuit by Mrs. Parker was filed by the same attorney the Allens used, and includes much of the same wording.

The lawsuits make clear that the problem was not just a single man, then-president Loy Craig Martindale, who "stumbled," as Wayers liked to say. Rather, it was a conspiracy which many top TWI leaders carried out in concert with each other- a problem that goes to the core of TWI leadership. (Note: the first names of the women involved have been replaced with "Mrs." to respect their privacy.)

Pertinent parts of the Allen lawsuit:

Court of Common Pleas, Shelby County, Ohio, Case number 00CV73, April 4, 2000

Plaintiffs: (Mrs.) and Paul Allen

Defendants: TWI, Loy Martindale, Rosalie Rivenbark, John Reynolds, Donald Wierwille, Howard Allen, Ramona Biden and possibly other leaders. (Note that all except Biden are current or past TWI trustees)

Count One, Breach of Contract

8. The Way Leadership and The Way breached their contract with Plaintiffs by creating impossible working conditions including requiring Plaintiffs to submit to sexual assault as a condition of continued employment.

Count Two, Assault and Intentional Affliction of Emotional Distress

11. Beginning in 1996 and continuing thereafter until March 1999, Defendant Martindale, and Defendant Bidon, acting as procuress for Defendant Martindale, wilfully and with malice, began a campaign to coerce Plaintiff (Mrs.) Allen into engaging in sexual activity with Defendant Martindale. Through the undue influence and psychological control referred to hereinabove, Defendants Martindale, Bidon and others eventually succeeded in sexually victimizing Plaintiff (Mrs.) Allen.

12. Because of the control which Defendants Martindale, Bidon and the other ,members of The Way leadership exerted over Plaintiffs, Plaintiff (Mrs.) Allen was incapable of consenting to such sexual activities.

13. During these times, The Way leadership Defendants were acting within the course and scope of their agency for The Way and attempted, in their capacity as leaders of The Way, to excuse, justify, or conceal their outrageous behavior.

Many moral failings and criminal actions are described or suggested in this text, including sex outside marriage, adultery (Martindale was married), procuring sexual partners, allowing and fostering such activities by others, sexual harassment of an employee, conspiracy of leadership to commit sexual assault, and so forth. Leadership, who should protect followers and employees from such immoral actions, fostered such abuse instead.

Pertinent parts of the Parker lawsuit:

Court of Common Pleas, Shelby County, Ohio, Case number 00CV129, June 23, 2000

Plaintiffs: (Mrs.) Parker

Defendants: TWI, Loy Martindale, Rosalie Rivenbark, John Reynolds, Donald Wierwille, Howard Allen (all are current or past TWI trustees)

Count One, Breach of Contract

10. The Way Leadership and TWI breached their contract with Plaintiff by creating impossible working conditions including, but not limited to, requiring Plaintiff to submit to sexual assault as a condition of continued employment.....

Count Two, Breach of Fiduciary Duty

11. ...Defendant TWI and the Way leadership have misused their fiduciary relationship with the Plaintiff so as to cause the failure of Plaintiff's marriage, to coerce Plaintiff into taking obscene photographs of Defendant Martindale and to posing for similar photographs. Additionally, Defendant Rev. Martindale shared information about other Way women, both single and married, with Plaintiff and shared confidential information about Plaintiff with other Way members.

12. ... to gain personal and pecuniary benefits at Plaintiff Parker's expense, thereby... subjecting Plaintiff to humiliation and opprobrium for their own personal amusement and gratification.

Count Three, Fraud

15. Such representations were made by the Way Leadership and Martindale solely to keep Plaintiff Parker available to Defendant Martindale for the exploitative sexual relationship with the Way leadership knew Martindale enjoyed with Plaintiff Parker.

16. Martindale and the Way leadership also falsely represented to Plaintiff Parker that she owed a duty to serve the physical needs of Defendant Martindale notwithstanding her marriage vows and the teachings of The Way. These false representations were... ratified by TWI.

17. In reliance upon these promises as aforesaid and representations concerning her duty, Plaintiff Parker continued to work for TWI, allowed Martindale to continue to exploit her sexually and otherwise continued to benefit TWI and the Way Leadership.

Note that Parker implies that other single and married women were involved in a ring of sexual exploitation. She also emphasizes the conspiracy of leadership to foster and approve such activity. She notes that Way Leadership asserted that it was her "duty" to provide sexual services to the President of TWI.

A child custody lawsuit in Colorado in April 2000 included testimony which asserted even more sexual exploitation in TWI. A participant in the action, Jeff Bennett, wrote this about the hearing:

"...there was a question about a lawsuit with The Way in Colorado and its connection to the Advanced Class two summers ago. I just got back from it. It was a child custody case against my wife [Nancy Bennett] who refused to leave the Way once I found out about the leadership's sexual exploitation. I left The Way International almost two years ago... when I learned about the sexual exploitation going on in the leadership ranks of The Way. I spoke directly with LCM [Martindale] about it and he admitted "his weakness," as he described it to me (there are many details to our conversation that I will release at a later date).

"During my court case many things came up. Number one, there were incidents recounted regarding four separate women who have been exploited by LCM." ( forums, April 13, 2000, JEB1)

TWI Motion Admits Repeated Wrongdoings

TWI filed a motion on about October 19, 2000, in response to the Allen suit in which TWI admitted that Martindale had a sexual relationship with another follower. The Sidney Daily News, October 20, 2000, reported:

"In June 1998, the Board of Trustees learned Martindale had a sexual relationship with another follower of The Way. Board members 'chastised' Martindale and took steps to guard against another incident. The board learned of the encounters with Allen in March 1999, but the motion explained that since those encounters predated June 1998 and the measures the board took then, board members decided no additional action was necessary."

The motion also admitted that Martindale had sexual relations with Allen at least four times.

This troubling admission by TWI makes clear that the Board of Trustees (BOT) knew it was fact (not just rumor or allegation) that Martindale had committed immoral actions and had sexually harassed at least two employees. Yet the BOT treated it very casually, not requiring Martindale's immediate resignation or making restitution to the victims. This suggests a serious lack of accountability of top leadership (especially the trustees). This is compounded by the fact that only the three trustees know and command all aspects of TWI, which made it easier for Martindale (who held one-third of the BOT votes) to gain a BOT decision which was very favorable to him.

These lawsuits and TWI admissions make clear the pattern and conspiracy of sexual harassment established by TWI leadership.

Dr. John Juedes, Dec. 2000, 2002, \sut_suitsex

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