Five Utah residents have filed a civil lawsuit against Operation Underground Railroad founder Tim Ballard and the organization, alleging sexual assault, fraud and emotional abuse.
The lawsuit, filed in Salt Lake County’s Third Judicial District Court, identifies the plaintiffs only by their initials, against Ballard, Operation Underground Railroad and its board members, Spear Fund, Rockwell Group and other companies, all of which are alleged to have The experience relates to the time when Ballard was part of OUR – an organization founded to rescue trafficked people.
“Defendant Ballard knowingly, knowingly, or recklessly assaulted and sexually assaulted Plaintiff because all of the sexual contact was conducted as part of a spousal ruse to help rescue trafficked children and women,” the lawsuit states.
These “lovers’ shenanigans” came to light through media reports accusing Ballard and OUR of inappropriate conduct. As the lawsuit states, “Ballard alleges that the couple’s ruse was to prevent pedophilia when Ballard would not sexually touch the trafficked women who were offered to him at strip clubs and massage parlors around the world.” A secret tool discovered by fetishists.”
But the women who filed the lawsuit allege that “Ballard soon began to abuse the couple’s ruse and ultimately used the ruse as a tool for sexual grooming,” the lawsuit says. The 30-page document outlines the alleged grooming tactics and alleges that Ballard used relationships with others to manipulate women and “force them into sexual contact.”
The lawsuit points to the relationship between Utah Attorney General Sean Reyes and Ballard, noting that “Reyes repeatedly vouched for OUR and Tim Ballard.” The lawsuit states, ” Complaints and criminal investigations regarding OUR and Ballard misconduct poured into his office.”
Reyes released a statement Monday: “The Attorney General’s Office has not received any criminal complaint or request for investigation concerning OUR or Tim Ballard as alleged in the complaint.”
Ballard has repeatedly confirmed the couple’s ruse but denied it involved sexual contact in response to previous reports.
“Like all the attacks on my character and integrity over the years, the latest tabloid-driven sexual accusations are false. They are baseless inventions designed to destroy me and the work we have built to end the trafficking and exploitation of vulnerable children.” movement,” Ballard said in a statement last month.
“OUR made staggering profits as a result of Ballard opening ‘for-profit’ companies, and the defendants, OUR and Ballard’s alter egos, enabled Ballard to enrich himself with the widow’s mite,” the lawsuit states.
The lawsuit lists 12 causes of action and seeks unspecified general and punitive damages to be determined at trial. Reasons for action include:
- All accusers sexually assaulted and assaulted Ballard.
- All plaintiffs conspired to commit battery and sexual assault against all defendants. It specifically states that “the couple’s shenanigans are an institutional principle of OUR and its affiliates.”
- All of the plaintiffs alleged that Ballard was defrauded.
- Civil conspiracy to defraud by all plaintiffs against all defendants
- Intentional infliction of emotional distress on all defendants.
“As a direct and proximate result of Defendants’ misconduct, Plaintiffs suffered severe emotional distress, permanent injuries, loss of self-esteem and other harm, all of which caused them a reasonable amount of general damages,” the lawsuit states.
Ballard is no longer a member of OUR, having left the organization following an internal investigation into his activities. He became a senior adviser to the Spear Foundation, which “works with and funds anti-trafficking organizations,” according to its website.
Ballard’s life and work at OUR was the inspiration for the recent box office success “Freedom.”