From News Services and Staff Reports
Man Who Said He Didn't Get
To Fly Awarded $138,000
Wednesday, January 14, 1987
The Washington Post; Page B04
U.S. District Court jury here ordered two Transcendental
Meditation organizations yesterday to pay almost $138,000 to a man who
contended said the organizations falsely promised he could learn to fly.
The World Plan Executive Council-United States and the Maharishi
International University of Fairfield, Iowa, were held liable for fraud
and negligence by the federal court jury.
The jury awarded Robert Kropinski $137,890 but refused to grant the
punitive damages he had sought in a $9 million lawsuit.
Kropinski, 36, contended he suffered psychological and emotional
damage during his 11-year association with Transcendental Meditation.
He testified that he was given false promises including that
twice-daily practice of chanting a single sound, would reduce stress,
improve his memory, reverse the aging process and promote good health.
Jurors in the month-long trial before U.S. District Judge Oliver
Gasch heard testimony about Transcendential Meditation followers reading
books with their eyes closed and attempting to fly through a technique
known as self-levitation.
The suit alleged that students learned only to "hop with the legs
folded in the lotus position."
Mike Tompkins, a spokesman for the organizations, said the groups
were deciding whether to appeal the verdict.
© Copyright 1987 The Washington Post Company
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