Judge rules that Scientology boss David Miscavige has been legally served papers in sex trafficking case

David Miscavige, leader of the secretive and notoriously hostile Scientology cult, has been officially served legal papers in a sex trafficking case this week. Service agents tried to find him for a year, reports Ben Schneiders for The Age, without success, but a Florida judge has ruled that Miscavige was intentionally evading service and that having sent the papers via certified mail will do.

For years, David Miscavige has succeeded in evading accountability," said John Dominguez, partner at Cohen Milstein, and Zahra Dean, attorney at Kohn Swift. "Today's ruling brings our clients – who are alleged to have endured unimaginable abuses in Scientology as children and into adulthood – one step closer to getting their day in court and obtaining justice against all responsible parties."

Scientology spokeswoman Karin Pouw said the magistrate's findings were "erroneous".

As the lawsuit has it, children are forced into indentured servitude until adulthood. At which point they are stuck on Scientology's famously decrepit, asbestos-strewn ocean liner in international waters with nothing but a contract to sign.