On the same day a Mennonite pastor was convicted of abetting international kidnapping of the child of a same-sex couple, one of the girl’s mothers filed a civil Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations (RICO) suit against that pastor and others who she alleges helped her former partner kidnap their child Isabella and flee the country.
The lawsuit, filed by Janet Jenkins Tuesday in the United States District Court for the District of Vermont, also names her former partner Lisa Miller, the Liberty University School of Law, and the Thomas Road Baptist Church, among others. Both Liberty University and Thomas Road Baptist were founded by the late Jerry Falwell and are based in Lynchburg, Virginia.
In Jenkins’ filing, she complains:
against Defendants for intentionally kidnapping and conspiring to kidnap Isabella Miller-Jenkins on or about September 21, 2009, and intentionally causing her continued detention outside the State of Vermont to the present day. The Plaintiffs also complain against Defendants for violating the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act, 18 U.S.C. § 1962 (c) and (d) for participating and conspiring to participate in the affairs of the Beachy Amish-Mennonite Christian Brotherhood through a pattern of past and continuing acts and threats involving kidnapping, money laundering and mail fraud. Plaintiffs further complain against the above named Defendants for conspiring to violate their civil rights in violation of 42 U .S.C. § 1985 (3) and 42 U.S.C. §1986.
The suit seeks an immediate return of the kidnapped child to the U.S., as well as actual and punitive damages.
While anti-LGBT extremists have cheered this kidnapping, actually comparing it to the “Underground Railroad,” the verdict in the criminal case and this new case could finally hold those behind the kidnapping accountable for their actions.