On Monday, Aaron and Melissa Klein paid the state of Oregon $136,927.07—the fine levied against them for declining to make a wedding cake for a same-sex couple in 2013. The payment also included interest accrued since the couple lost their appeal in July.
The Kleins, owners of Sweet Cakes by Melissa, had asked the state to postpone collecting the fine while they continued the appeal process. But just weeks before Christmas, the state labor commissioner who brought the case against them seized their bank accounts.
According to Todd Starnes of Fox News, the confiscation wiped out nearly $7,000 of the family’s funds. Money raised through donations to help pay the fine was held in a separate account.
“It was like my breath was taken away,” Melissa Klein told Starnes. “I panicked. Everything was gone.”
Although they’ve now paid the fine, the couple does not intend to stop fighting the state over its judgement of discrimination. The case is one of several involving Christian owners of wedding-related businesses that could end up before the U.S. Supreme Court.
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