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Victim of Ravi Zacharias says RZIM has refused to release her from non-disclosure agreement

by Will Maule

A woman who was victimised by the late evangelist Ravi Zacharias has said that she is being silenced by a non-disclosure agreement. Lori Anne Thompson claims that her latest request to be released from the agreement was denied by Zacharias' wife and the apologetics organisation he founded - Ravi Zacharias International Ministries (RZIM) - following a request from her lawyer. 

On Twitter, Thompson posted a screenshot of an email exchange between Boz Tchividjian, her lawyer, and an attorney at Miller & Martin - the law firm tasked by RZIM to investigate a number of allegations made against the late apologist.

The communication shows Tchividjian following up with the firm to ascertain whether or not the family of Ravi Zacharias are considering releasing Thompson from the NDA. 

"I am assuming that we have not received a response because the estate of Ravi Zacharias has refused to release my clients from the confidentiality/non-disparagement clause of the settlement agreement? Please confirm," Tchividjian writes. 

A lawyer from Miller & Martin replies: "Your assumption is correct." 

Thompson said that she was "heartbroken" by the development. "M. Zacharias, the wife of R. Zacharias and board member of @RZIMhq has decided that I, one of his victims, will not have my own word returned to me," she tweeted. "These are among the things that should never be." 

Tchividjian urged those refusing to release Thompson from the NDA to change their course of action now that the truth has emerged about Ravi's various other indiscretions. "It is time that the estate of @RaviZacharias release my clients from the NDA," he tweeted. "As Ravi was violating it, they remained silent. Now he’s gone and the truth is surfacing about his abuse of others. Why would you not want to know that truth from the Thompsons??" 

Thompson was previously embroiled in a legal battle with Zacharias following revelations of an inappropriate virtual relationship and allegations that Ravi used his position of influence to solicit graphic photos from her. In response to a demand letter from Thompson and her husband, Brad, seeking a financial settlement, Zacharias filed a federal lawsuit against the couple under the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations (RICO) Act. The case was eventually settled in November 2017, with Thompson signing the non-disclosure agreement.

While Zacharias admitted to being in private communication with Thompson, he refuted the allegation that he solicited explicit photos from her and denied any sexual wrongdoing - he stuck by his story until his death in May of last year. 

Since then, more allegations have come to light about Ravi's sexual misconduct. This time, his own organisation have admitted their veracity. 

In a statement released just before Christmas, RZIM confirmed that Ravi "did indeed engage in sexual misconduct" after instructing Miller & Martin to complete an independent investigation into a number of allegations put forward by people who worked at two day spas which were owned and frequented by Zacharias.

"This misconduct is deeply troubling and wholly inconsistent with the man Ravi Zacharias presented both publicly and privately to so many over more than four decades of public ministry," RZIM said at the time. "We are devastated for those who have suffered from Ravi’s misconduct and for the pain that they are enduring." 

In their interim report, Miller & Martin revealed that while some of their findings were consistent with the details already published in news reports, other elements of the conduct they uncovered were "more serious". 

The firm said it intends to conclude the investigation in January or early February and confirmed that the RZIM board will release the full report publicly thereafter.

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