Western Pa. church to appeal verdict in 2009 raid

PITTSBURGH (AP) — A western Pennsylvania religious group is appealing last month’s jury verdict that its rights weren’t violated by a 2009 raid by a county drug task force.

The (Uniontown) Herald-Standard (http://bit.ly/19MBWVD ) says The Church of Universal Love and Music, which says it spreads its message by holding musical concerts, has lodged a notice of appeal with the 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.

The group used a property about 35 miles southeast of Pittsburgh for large gatherings. But Fayette County zoning officials maintained that the group wasn’t a real church, and prosecutors said the concerts were a cover for illegal drug activity.

Federal jurors said in July that the raid hadn’t violated the constitutional rights of the church or its members to religious freedom or against unreasonable search and seizure.

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Information from: Herald-Standard, http://www.heraldstandard.com/

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