The TLRC began to be involved with lawsuits in the mid 1970s, with claims against the TLRC that they were splitting up families. Chicoine and Schuckardt were involved in lawsuits over church property in 1984. Other lawsuits were regarding claims of defation and lying.

After 1984, the Chicoine and Schuckardt factions began a long legal battle over church property. These court cases went on for over 5 years.

Spokane Superior Court

  • John M. Tamplin sued the CMRI in 1976 for $14 million and lost his case. Tamplin was a former member who had joined and left the group in 1975. Tamplin had apparently left his wife of 40 years and lost his business in order to join the church. He regretted his decision, and then spent years protesting and suing the group. Tamplin seemed like a huge thorn in their side throughout the late 1970s. They probably should’ve screened new members a little closer.
  • Case 79-2039777. The TLRC obtained a restraining order against Tamplin to keep his "truth truck" off of church property.
  • In 1984, Fr. Chicoine sued Francis Schuckardt (case no. 84-2-01445-2) for church property. TLRC-Chicoine was awarded $250,000
  • Case numbers: 83-2020845 and 87-2027397. In 1986, Jerry Bryant O’Neil sued the TLRC for “alienation of his wife’s affections” similar to the Radecki case. He was initially awarded money, but then it was overturned.
  • In May 1989 (case no. 89-2016812), Schuckardt sued TLRC-Chicoine in order to get back all church property. He sued for $5 million in Spokane property and $1.5 million in Idaho property (1st District Court in Coeur d'Alene). This suit claimed there were 16 pieces of property in Kootenai County.
  • The Church was in the lawsuit vs Raphael Welp. case numbers 90-2019963 and 90-2022867
  • Denis Chicoine sued his attorney Bliss Bignall, case no. 90-2031394
  • CMRI and Bishop Pivarunas sued KREM-TV in Spokane Superior Court in 1993 alleging defamation.

Supreme Court of Idaho

Jerry O'Neil (see full case) sued the group for splitting up his family. This summary of the case is worth reading.


The TLRC were involved in numerous lawsuits in California. It's not clear which court system these are in (district, supreme, etc.)

  • Calif. case 87-12258. This case has the testimony of law enforcement stating that the Aryan Nations were training on Mt. St. Michael property.
  • Calif. case 87-2823. This case is regarding the SWAT team raid on Schuckardt's compound in California in 1987.
  • Calif. case 87-12190. Similar to case 87-2823, the charges against 13 were dropped.
  • Calif. cases 13096 and 13097. These were cases filed by Chicoine in order to obtain property from Schuckardt. Chicoine lost his cases.

Ohio Court of Appeals

1976. Radecki v. Shuckardt (see full case), 361 N.E.2d 543 (Ohio Ct. App. 1976), Ohio Court of Appeals, Filed November 5th, 1976, Docket No. 7873. Author: Clifford F. Brown. The case involved Dr. Joseph A. Radecki and Henry M. Radecki, alleging that Joseph’s wife Catherine and Henry’s wife Emily were induced by the group and its teachings to desert and abandon their husbands. Today, identical twin brothers Fr. Dominic Radecki and Fr. Francisco Radecki (brought to the TLRC by their mother Emily) are priests in the CMRI.

Nebraska Supreme Court

1981. Nebraska Supreme Court, Burnham v. Burnham. (see full case) 304 N.W.2d 58 (1981) 208 Neb. 498 Dennis BURNHAM, Appellant, v. Carolyn BURNHAM, Appellee. No. 43447. April 3, 1981. Carolyn was convinced by Schuckardt to send her children to Schuckardt's Coeur d'Alene schools, and Dennis Burnham sued her and won full custody. The court awarded him full custody because they said she declared her daughter to be illegitimate (which would be psychologically damaging to a child), Carolyn said she'd cut her daughter Jaime out of her life if she didn't accept Schuckardt's view, and that the group was racist and would be damaging to a child. The court said that the religious beliefs Carolyn held would have a deleterious effect on the relationship between child and father, and on the child itself. Not only did the father win full custody, but Carolyn was ordered to pay $50 month in child custody.

US District Court

CMRI and Bishop Pivarunas sued E. Michael Jones in U.S. District court in 1993/1994, alleging defamation.

Utah Court of Appeals

Docket Number 880542 (see full case) Schuckardt's group was sued by Chicoine's group

Additional cases

The Chicoine faction subsequently filed civil suits in five different states wherein the Schuckardt faction had assets, claiming that these assets belonged to his church, but lost all of these cases. These cases were in Arizona, and Canada, (Canada-Vancouver? 872893), the others are unknown (Idaho and Washington?).