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Bakery still has to pay $135,000 to lesbian couple they refused to serve

Bakery still has to pay $135,000 to lesbian couple they refused to serve

A state court has ruled a bakery will still have to pay $135,000 (€112,294.35) in damages to a lesbian couple they refused to serve.

Sweet Cakes by Melissa is based in the US state Oregon.

Melissa and Aaron Klein run the bakery.

They refused to bake a wedding cake for Rachel and Laurel Bowman-Cryer in January 2013 because they were having a same-sex wedding.

Aaron Klein said baking the cake would violate his religious convictions.

Rachel and Laurel Bowman-Cryer then filed a formal complaint with the state labor bureau.

It was ruled the bakery had violated anti-discrimination laws and were forced to pay $135,000 (€112,294.35) in damages.

The Kleins later filed a petition to the Oregon Court of Appeals.

Their bakery closed not long after the couple were ordered to pay the fine.

‘Oregon remains open to all’

Melissa and Aaron Klein claimed the ruling was a violation of their rights under the U.S. Constitution to freedom of religion and expression.

A three-judge panel of the Oregon Court of Appeals rejected the petition.

Brad Avakian said in a statement: ‘Today’s ruling sends a strong signal that Oregon remains open to all.’

Avakian is the Oregon’s labor commissioner.

He continued: ‘Within Oregon’s public accommodations law is the basic principle of human decency that every person, regardless of their sexual orientation or gender identity, has the freedom to fully participate in society.’