In the Netherlands, Scientology lost their suit against Karin Spaink. She published OT 3 on the internet. The judge ruled it did not violate copyright laws because it was "fair use" of materials. (For those of you that don't know copyright law – the judge ruled correctly.)
Note: We recently read some promo sent out by the Church wherein RTC falsely reported they had won all of their internet suits for copyright infringement. The above and other entries on this time track shows that is a lie. But, don't be surprised – that's what a 1.1 does frequently.
DM has a meeting with the OT VIIIs. He tells them that the OT 7 course did not work, was not working, and had to be re-engineered. They would all have to do OT 7 again. In addition, the 1200 people would have to pay the increased price.
What he doesn't tell them is that his squirreling of OT 7 and OT 8 is resulting in people on OT 7 & OT 8 dying, having psychotic breaks, and leaving the church.
Due to the confidential nature of OT 7 & 8, we cannot elaborate here on just exactly how they have squirreled these two levels. But, you can know that they did squirrel it by the fact of people on those levels dying, having psychotic breaks, and leaving the church. You don't think that standard tech causes that do you? That tells you tech is out.
The other thing that tells you tech is out is the fact that it has been 19 years since the release of OT 7 and there has not been one actual completion, yet.
The GOLDEN AGE OF SQUIRRELING is killing your fellow Scientologists. Isn't it about time that you took responsibility for doing something about Miscavige before his squirreling kills anyone else? If nothing else, you can pass this time track around so everyone knows.
We are not "Davidologists". We are Scientologists. Let's get this 1.1 criminal suppressive squirrel out of our Church and get back to being on source.
Some so-called Scientologists, afraid and lacking confront, offer up justifiers for all this.
We have heard all the justifiers. They are suppressive. Here's why:
HCOPL 7 December 1969 The Ethics Officer, His Character
Reasonableness is suppressive since it lets oppression continue without action being taken. Suppressive reasonableness is a common trait. It comes from THE INABILITY TO CONFRONT EVIL. (Criminal Track)
Judge Brinkema grants RTC's motion for summary judgement against Lerma for copyright infringement. Lerma was fined $2,500. (Criminal Track)
The Library of Congress records show that on this date: CSI transfers copyrights to CST for Standard PTS tech drills, PTS tech part 1 & 28 other titles authored by CSI. (Criminal Track)
The Library of Congress records show that on this date: CSI transfers copyrights to CST for Scientology drug rundown auditor course & 1,030 other titles & religious works. Author or co-author is CSI, derived from or based upon the literary works of LRH.
Note: This is an important entry because it shows how much re-writing of LRH issues has been done by CSI.
The Library of Congress records show that on this date: Bridge Publications Inc transfers copyrights to CST for the Academy Lectures, level O & 154 other titles, religious and fiction works. Author or co-author is BPI derived from or based upon the works of LRH. (Criminal Track)
Note: This is an important entry because it shows how much re-writing of LRH issues has been done by BPI.
RTC files a copyright suit against Grady Ward for posting OT materials on the internet. His trial is set for Jan 18, 1998. (Criminal Track)
March -- Internet critics from all over the United States come to Clearwater to protest the church's policies of harassment. Other pickets occur in other cities in the United States, England and Australia. Although the church attempts to dismiss the picketers in Clearwater as insignificant, top officials in the church fly in from Los Angeles and Washington to handle damage control with the press. (Brief History of Scientology in Clearwater)
Randy McDonald writes a High Crime Report on David Miscavige:
David Miscavige is charged with Felony Fraud and the suppression of Scientology and Scientologists.
Miscavige has been engaged in a covert but methodical campaign to alter, alloy, negate, and even eradicate parts of LRH's technology, then sell the alter-ised versions to staff and public while he uses his position over Scientology and Scientologists to assert the "purity" of the tech. It is Felony Corporate and Trademark Fraud involving millions of dollars; it crosses State lines and utilizes U.S. mails which makes it a Federal offense…
Evidence of Felony Fraud
Authorization of Altered LRH Materials
As the head of RTC, Miscavige has defrauded the public and staffs out of millions of dollars by approving and overseeing the promotion and sales of works, carrying the trademarks of LRH and Scientology, that are proclaimed by him as being "100% pure, unadulterated" LRH tech, knowing that the works have been cut, rewritten, edited, and altered. Miscavige's own writings stand as testament to his knowledge of the condition of published materials:
"RTC ….passes any LRH issue, pack or book before issuance so as to ensure it is authentic and that the writings are one hundred percent Source. In the case of published or translated LRH works, RTC checks every word to verify they are completely faithful to the original LRH manuscripts."
David Miscavige – Chairman of the Board, Religious Technology Center But here are a few examples of the truth: A. Entire paragraphs have been carefully and seamlessly edited out of the current edition of LRH's Study Tapes in such a way that the listener has no knowledge that they are gone unless he does a side-by-side comparison to an unedited set of tapes.
B. HCOPL 13 March 1969 Addition To HCO Pol Ltr of 23 June 1967 'Policies On Physical Healing, Insanity And Potential Trouble Sources' ----Potential Trouble Source (b) is missing.
C. The "Life Improvement" courses, plus the "Scientology Handbook" contain altered and edited LRH tech mixed in with material written by unknown others. Advertised as "based on the works of L. Ron Hubbard," these are an undifferentiated mish-mash of LRH's writings and the writings of others.
Below is but one example:
HERE IS THE ORGINAL LRH REFERENCE
"First consider a group which takes in money but does not deliver anything in exchange. This is called rip-off. It is the 'exchange' condition of robbers, tax men, governments and other criminal elements." HCOPL 10 September 1982 Finance Series 36
HERE IS THE "LIFE IMPROVEMENT COURSE" VERSION
"First consider the group which takes in money but does not deliver anything in exchange. This is called rip-off. It is the 'exchange' condition of robbers, most tax men, many governments and criminal elements." (From The Dynamics of Money course workbook)
These edits, deletions, eradications, and adulterations of LRH's tech are, every one, High Crimes and Suppressive Acts. All of this tampering is a flagrant violation of Keeping Scientology Working, and is expressly forbidden in many of LRH's HCOPLs – which constitute a promise to people who purchase Scientology materials and services that what they are getting is straight LRH:
"All materials released, used or sold must be straight Scientology as given in the writings or lectures of LRH… Books may not be advertised for sale or the advertisement paid for from HCO Book fund except LRH books…" HCOPL 4 March 1965 Technical and Policy Distribution
"The public wants Scientology Ron's brand and they don't buy other brands." HCOPL 27 December 1963 The Magic of Good Management
"The field or public must not be led to believe that I have written or issued things I have not." HCOPL 21 June 1959 Signatures On Bulletins, Policies and Sec Eds
These assurances, an integral and vital part of Scientology, are held sacred and inviolable by Scientologists. Selling anything else to the buying public using LRH's name and his trademarks is Felony Fraud.
But this is not the only avenue for fraud used by Miscavige. Scientology Policy Directives (SPDs) now number over 200. None were authored by LRH and no such issue is mentioned by him in any HCOPL. Under Miscavige's supervision, though, SPD's are approved for issue by RTC's AVC division.
With Miscavige's approval, SPDs have been issued and enforced under the fraudulent claim that they are policy for Churches. This claim can be found in the back of the current edition of OEC Volume O: "Scientology Policy Directives – its purpose is to provide an issue type for policy for the Church of Scientology, and to distinguish from policy issued by LRH which is issued in HCO PL form. Senior to all administrative issues except HCOPLs and any other issues or advices by LRH. Its distribution is all staff unless otherwise designated. Black ink on blue paper."
This seeks to negate all of the following LRH references:
"If it is not in an HCO Policy Letter, it is not policy." HCOPL 5 March 1965 Policy, Source Of
"If it isn't in an HCOB or an HCO Pol Ltr or recorded on tape in my voice, it isn't tech or policy." HCOPL 16 April AD 15 The Hidden Data Line
"A policy letter is not Scientology org policy unless written or authorized by L. Ron Hubbard and passed as a resolution or covered by blanket resolution of the International Board and issued or published by an HCO. It is not policy if any of these steps are missing." HCOPL 5 March 1965 Policy Source Of
"STANDARD ADMIN means the usual 'on-policy' procedure applied. The source of STANDARD ADMIN is an HCO Policy Letter." HCOPL 4 June 1971 Standard Admin
The above references unequivocally, unquestionably, incontestably SLAM THE DOOR on any possibility of SPDs being policy, as is claimed. Yet, Miscavige and AVC and others have been made aware, in several reports, of this glaring violation of LRH's policy, and no action has been taken to correct it. On the contrary, OSA staff (a non-Source entity established by SPDs) have been sent to investigate the report writers.
"…If correctly reported outnesses that threaten the org are NOT corrected then one assumes that suppression exists... It occasionally happens that it is someone high up in the org. It sometimes happens his (Ethics Officer's) seniors or the Executive Council scold him for daring to report on things or to them. Then he knows the suppression is high up… HCOPL 7 December 1969 Ethics, The Design Of
And so none of this gets corrected. And so this Felony Fraud is perpetrated on the public:
What the public believes (and pays to support with donations) to be standard, on-policy, on-source organizations, each of them carrying the trademarks of LRH, are actually being run off of squirrel Scientology Policy Directives (written by anonymous others), many of which directly contradict LRH policy.
Here are just a few examples of SPDs that attempt to negate LRH's tech:
WHAT THE SPD SAYS:
"There is no practice of disconnection allowed in the Church of Scientology."
SPD # 28 Suppressive Act
WHAT LRH SAYS:
"The bare fact is that disconnection is a vital tool in handling PTSness and can be very effective when used correctly…The technology of disconnection is essential in the handling of potential trouble sources. It can and has saved lives and untold trouble and upset. It must be preserved and used correctly." HCOPL 10 September 1982 Disconnection
WHAT THE SPD SAYS:
"Course completion. 2000 points"
SPD # 6, 6 August 1990 The Standard Student Points System
WHAT LRH SAYS:
"Course completion…200 points."
HCOPL 18 April 1981 The Standard Student Points System
Miscavige is guilty of the following High Crimes:
"Intentional and unauthorized alteration of LRH technology, policy, issues or checksheets."
"Issuing alter-ised Scientology technical data or information or instructional or admin procedures, calling it Scientology or calling it something else to confuse or deceive people as to the true source, beliefs and practices of Scientology."
"Falsely attributing or falsely representing oneself or others as source of Scientology or Dianetics technology; or using any position gained with staff and/or public to falsely attribute non-source material to source or to falsely represent non-source material as authorized Scientology or Dianetics technology."
"Using Scientology (or perverted and alter-ised tech and calling it Scientology) harmfully so as to bring about disrepute to an org, group, or Scientology itself." (Criminal Track)
The U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia orders the IRS to release to Tax Analysts field service advice memorandums (FSAs) prepared by the IRS Office of Chief Counsel. Ref: Tax Analysts press release, 21 Mar 1996 (Timeline of Scientology versus the IRS)
David and Julie Mayo receive a favorable decision from the 9th Circuit Court of Appeal.
It overturns the lower court's decision to grant RTC an injunction against Mayo using the Advanced Technology. It also affirms the lower court's decision to award Mayo 2.9 million dollars in his counterclaim against RTC. (Criminal Track)
Someone revises and changes a confidential LRH HCOB and 75% of it is in script (C/S Series 73RA). The subject is how to audit FPRD on OT 5 and above. A change is made in how six months sec checks are being done on OT 7s because of this. The special handling LRH gave for OT III and above is not now done on the handling of O/Ws. Also, they started running the sec checks FPRD style from this time on. These changes start causing BPC on at least some OT 7s receiving sec checks, thereafter. (Virginia McClaughry: "My Story")
The Library of Congress records show that on this date: CSI transfers copyrights to CST for the first postulate, PTS 1-3 & 68 other titles by CSI.
CSI transfers copyrights to CST for Expansion of Havingness & 76 other titles by CSI.
Note: More squirrel issues authored by CSI, being given to CST for engraving onto titanium. This ensures the squirrel tech will be preserved for future generations too. (Criminal Track)
The Tampa Tribune breaks the Lisa McPherson death story. Until their investigation, the church's claim was that Lisa died of meningitis. (Brief overview of Scientology's interaction with Clearwater Florida)
In a January 21 interview on Inside Edition, Elliott Abelson (Scientology attorney) says of Lisa McPherson:
"She rested, she slept a lot, uhh, nothing unusual, uhh, really, until the end of her stay. She did (pause) get food, uhh, water, obviously people talked to her, uhh. But she got rest and relaxation." (Brief overview of Scientology's interaction with Clearwater Florida)
In U.S. District Court, Northern District of California, Grady Ward files a counterclaim in RTC v. Grady Ward. Evidence is presented that he and his family have been subjected to harassment. Some of it is that David Miscavige threatened his children by e-mail and Eugene Ingram telling his employer that he had been fired from his previous job, which was false. RTC attorney Helena Kobrin attempted to excuse Ingram’s actions by saying that Ingram made a "sincere error". (Criminal Track)
Ken Dandar files a civil suit against Scientology and Dr. David Minkoff for wrongful death in Lisa McPherson's case on February 19. (Brief overview of Scientology's interaction with Clearwater Florida)
... the head of security at the Clearwater church, Bill Johnson, allegedly chases a former member through the streets, screaming death threats. He stops only when she ducks into a martial arts academy and he is barred from following. Scientology Attorney Paul B. Johnson explains that the threats were only a figure of speech. (Brief overview of Scientology's interaction with Clearwater Florida)
March 8 critics of Scientology picket the Ft. Harrison Hotel. Church members surround picketers and taunt them during the day. At the candlelight vigil that evening, hundreds of Scientologists taunt the mourners and even blow out candles. (Brief overview of Scientology's interaction with Clearwater Florida)
Church logs kept from Lisa McPherson's stay are made public. They show that Lisa is acting psychotic and that church members appear to be applying the Introspection Rundown to her, which requires her to be in isolation until she perceives why she went psychotic. (Brief overview of Scientology's interaction with Clearwater Florida)
Virginia McClaughry is getting a six months sec check at Flag. Something was different about the sec check. It was grueling, drawn out, engramic and caused BPC. She wrote to her SOLO NOTS C/S and said something is very wrong. She said that it should not be the case that she is running along fine on the level at home and then when she comes to Flag her case gets messed up.
LRH wrote an HCOB giving a special handling for OT 3 and above. Someone revised it and the special handling was no longer being done on Confessional questions. This was unknown to Virginia at the time, but it was this change that was messing up the case and causing BPC. (Virginia McClaughry: "My Story")
Protesters again hold a candlelight vigil at the Ft. Harrison Hotel in memory of Lisa McPherson. Simultaneously 3-4,000 Scientologists surround the policed department headquarters chanting "Syd Klein - what's your crime?" Klein is Chief of Police. (Brief overview of Scientology's interaction with Clearwater Florida)
The secret agreement between IRS and C of S is no longer secret. The non profit group called Tax Analysts sued on the Freedom of Information Act, and the litigation record revealed the existence of that secret "negotiations committee", chaired by Howard Schoenfeld. (Criminal Track)
The secret agreement is leaked to the Wall Street Journal, which promptly puts it on its Web site and leads with a front-page story. Newspapers across the United States report the story. Ref: Wall Street Journal, 30 Dec 1997 (Timeline of Scientology versus the IRS)
The IRS announces that it is to hold an internal inquiry into how the agreement was leaked. The Church of Scientology denounces the leak. Scientologists accuse unnamed participants in the Internet newsgroup alt.religion.scientology of being involved. Ref: New York Times, 1 Jan 1998, alt.religion.scientology (Timeline of Scientology versus the IRS)
Heber (Jentzsch), President of CSI, is arrested in France on criminal charges of infiltrating government agencies and stealing documents and tax fraud. (Criminal Track)
I.R.S Eyes Probe After Disclosure of Confidential Scientology Pact
New York Times
January 1, 1998
By DOUGLAS FRANTZ
The Internal Revenue Service indicated Wednesday that it would open an investigation into the disclosure of the confidential closing agreement that granted tax-exempt status to the Church of Scientology.
Details of the agreement had been kept secret under taxpayer privacy law since it was reached between the tax agency and the church in 1993. But on Tuesday The Wall Street Journal published an article describing the agreement and posted the document on its Internet Web site. The New York Times obtained a copy of the agreement the same day.
Under the agreement, the church paid $12.5 million to the tax agency, created an internal monitoring committee to insure compliance with tax laws and agreed to drop more than 2,000 lawsuits against the tax agency and present and former officials of the agency.
In exchange, the Internal Revenue Service granted tax-exempt status to the church and provided it with a sweeping tax amnesty. The agreement canceled payroll taxes, penalties and tax liens the agency had said were owed by Scientology-related entities and dropped several audits of church organizations. It also reversed an earlier revenue policy and made payments by Scientologists to the church tax deductible.
In a statement Wednesday, the revenue agency said that closing agreements were confidential taxpayer information and that their unauthorized disclosure violated the revenue code. The agency did not formally announce an investigation, but the statement said disclosure of confidential tax information was investigated by its Office of the Chief Inspector.
Frank Keith, a spokesman for the revenue service, said the agency would not confirm that the document was genuine. Keith also declined to say whether an inquiry had been started.
But he said the agency would regard the release of confidential taxpayer information as a serious matter and would seek an investigation. The unauthorized disclosure could be a felony, he said.
A former senior official at the agency, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said that the disclosure would certainly be investigated and that the press statement was a means of signaling the inquiry. (Copyright 1998 The New York Times Company)
SP Times front page article quotes Scientology as stating they want "Clearwater known as the first Scientology city in the world." (Brief overview of Scientology's interaction with Clearwater Florida)
Chris Cloutier leaves staff. He was applying KSW on the re-writing of LRH tech and policy. He says he read a directive that grants Ron's Technical Research and Compilations (RTRC) permission to revise and distribute further technical information as needed. This directive states they have LRH's permission to do this. The directive is dated after Ron's death.
He says OT TRO has been changed. That BTB's cancelled by LRH have been reactivated and have his name as if he wrote them. The EP of the study drill of confronting a paper has been deleted.
He was declared suppressive by IJC and expelled. (Criminal Track)
Note: Another travesty of justice. As usual, Ethics expels people who are on-source and apply KSW and protects the suppressive squirrels who are altering the tech.
In the RTC vs FACTNet case, the church says FACTNet violated 1900 of their copyrights.
All 1900 issues in the FACTNet case were copyrighted between 83 and 87 and they were not copyrighted earlier. In some instances they do have earlier registrations but the majority of them do not. You can't find anything from the 50's, 60's and 70's that says this stuff was ever copyrighted or even a notice of registration. Every part of it is in the public domain.
So DM knew he was committing fraud when he got court orders to raid Erlich because they really did not own the copyrights.
Scientology offers FACTNet $12 million to settle the case. They are worried that FACTNet will prove they fraudulently obtained the copyrights from Hubbard's estate. They so want to get out of it that they move to dismiss THEIR OWN trade secret claims in the FACTNet case. They want to ensure no one can prove they don't own these copyrights and trademarks, and don't have legal standing to bring the cases.
Therefore they offer FACTNet 12 million to settle but FACTNet refused their offer. (Criminal Track)
Note: FACTNet did settle later because they lacked the capital to pursue the case to the end.
US District Court in San Jose, California assessed $75,000 damages against Keith Henson for copyright infringement for posting a Scientology document on the internet. (Criminal Track)
Jesse Prince, former RTC exec, decides to end his silence about what he knows because he saw others being courageous enough to speak out about their experiences. Therefore he starts letting the public know what he knows about the criminal activities of top level management. (Criminal Track)
By July, Scientology now owns 30 Clearwater properties. (Brief overview of Scientology's interaction with Clearwater Florida)
Dr. David Minkoff settles out of court with Lisa McPherson's estate. (Brief overview of Scientology's interaction with Clearwater Florida)
Virginia McClaughry is back at Flag for another six months check. In the middle of her six-month sec check, she realized the magnitude of the overt that she had committed by backing down on the application of HCOB C/S Series 73RB. It was out KSW and out integrity for her to do so. The auditor then ran the overt to full EP, including FPRD. Virginia had a major win on this of regaining her integrity.
After the session she assigned herself a condition of Liability. She wrote up her Liability formula, stating the amends was that she was going to ensure the application of HCOB C/S Series 73RB to all SOLO NOTS auditors and get the out tech corrected. She routed it to her pc folder.
She then refused to continue the six months sec-check as it was a violation of LRH HCOB C/S Series 73RB to have ever started it in the first place. She had not fit the criteria listed in the HCOB as being in need of a sec check, therefore there was no need to interrupt her progress on the level. And also as evidenced by her SOLO NOTS C/S statement on her arrival that she was moving along well on the level.
She then wrote a comm to the HGC C/S that per HCOB C/S Series 73RB, she should just do her cram, get her materials and go home. And, that she would not return until she was stalled or moving slowly or in need of a cram. She said if this HCOB was not going to applied that she was not going back on the level because it was out tech.
Note: Virginia tried to get this sorted out involving all possible C/S and Command Channels with the result that she was expelled in 1999. From her debrief one can see that none of the involved Execs is really interested in LRH as source. (Virginia McClaughry: "My Story")
Series of Articles in St. Petersburg Times about David Miscavige, Scientology, Gold, etc.
Title: The Man behind Scientology
"David Miscavige, the seldom-seen leader of the church, comes forth in his first newspaper interview to talk of a more peaceful time for Scientology."
"After years spent well outside the public's radar screen, Miscavige says he plans to step forward now and take a central role in trying to end differences with those who still oppose Scientology, the self-improvement "technology" devised by the late L. Ron Hubbard in the early 1950s. In his first-ever newspaper interview, Miscavige told the Times that Clearwater is the scene of "possibly the last long-running conflict" for Scientology. He said he wants to take "big steps" to end hostilities there." (SPTimes: The Man behind Scientology)
The significance of the failure of LRH to place notice of copyright on documents he published before 1978 cannot be understated.
In the FACTnet case Judge Kane writes a Memorandum Opinion and Order. Once a work enters the public domain, it remains there irrevocably. The 1909 Copyright Act required, inter alia, that the copyright owner of a published document affix proper notice to each publicly distributed copy of the work.
Non compliance with the notice requirement could inject the work into the public domain.
Indeed the Copyright Act of 1909 contained a very strict notice requirement. A work published without a valid copyright notice was automatically injected into the public domain. 17 U.S.C. SS10, 19 et. Seq. (1909 Act) ; New Era Publications International, APS v. Carol Pub. Group, 904 F.2d 152, 161 (2d Cir.), cert. Denied, 111 S. Ct. 297 (1990).
Here there is now evidence that documents purportedly having copyright notice affixed upon first publication, did not. Further, there is evidence that a number of people knew this, knew the significance of it, and nevertheless set about to hoodwink the Copyright Office and the rest of the world. (Criminal Track)
Scientology is indicted in Lisa McPherson's case for practicing medicine without a license and abuse of a disabled person. (Brief overview of Scientology's interaction with Clearwater Florida)
Bob Minton is a critic of Scientology's current criminal top management. Therefore he is subjected to attacks from them. Bob has a friend named Jeff Schmidt who is also subjected to attacks as a way to get at Minton. While Jeff is away on a trip, someone broke into his office and copied every file he had there. This is another piece of evidence that shows that the old Guardian's Office actions of doing B & Es (breaking and entering – an illegal method of gathering information), is still in use today. (Criminal Track)
Scientology lost an appeal in Canada’s biggest libel judgement:1.6 million because Scientology tried to discredit Casey Hill, the prosecutor who handled the criminal case against the Church. (Criminal Track)
Note: Another case of your donations going to pay for RTC’s black intelligence operations, gone wrong. No wonder it costs so much for services. RTC keeps paying out multi-millions in suits against them for running illegal black intelligence operations on people.
Note: Miscavige’s and RTC’s crimes are being exposed on the internet. So, they need a solution.
A project to flood the Internet with thousands of websites is engaged upon.
Scientologists are told to open a "I am a Scientologist" website.
Unbeknownst to the Scientolgists who installed this program onto their computer, RTC covertly installed a "Net Nanny" that censors over 1000 websites, e-mail addresses and names of critics. RTC is afraid that Scientologists will find out about their criminal activities on the internet. If you installed this on your computer and want it off, go to http://www.xenu.net/archive/events/censorship/ for directions on how to remove it.
SP Times article states that Scientology attorneys in court condemned the actions of the Scientologists who took care of Lisa McPherson. (Brief overview of Scientology's interaction with Clearwater Florida)
The Church of Scientology settles the Bonnie Woods libel suit against them. They paid her.(Criminal Track)
Larry Wollersheim breaks off settlement negotiations with Scientology. He now has a collection case in LA County Superior Court for 6.8 million. (Criminal Track)
CNN: French Justice Ministry investigates destruction of Scientology evidence - Web posted at: 7:06 AM EDT (1106 GMT)
PARIS (AP) -- France's Justice Ministry opened an investigation Wednesday into the destruction of key evidence against the Church of Scientology in a Marseille court, according to judicial sources.
Marseille court officials alerted the Justice Ministry to the removal of more than three tons of evidence in August, the sources said on customary condition of anonymity.
The Marseille prosecutor's office said in a statement that the destruction of certain sealed files was a result of "negligence" by a court clerk and not an intentional act.
The documents relate to an investigation opened in 1990 against regional Scientology leaders in the southern coastal cities of Marseille and Nice for fraud and the illegal practice of medicine.
Seven of those leaders are scheduled to go on trial Sept. 20. The destruction of the evidence will not delay the trial, the sources said.
According to a lawyer representing the plaintiff, a former Scientologist, the evidence destroyed includes financial statements, notes concerning Scientology members and apparatus known as "electrometers," designed to measure "self-control."
The lawyer, Jean-Michel Pesenti, said the documents were relatively unimportant, but that the church could try to use their disappearance to delay the trial.
The case was initially put off in 1995 due to a procedural error.
A Paris appeals court is expected to rule Sept. 29 on a similar case against the Church of Scientology in which evidence also disappeared.
France has long had a contentious relationship with Scientology, which is fighting to be recognized as a legitimate religion in Europe.
In July, France's highest court upheld the acquittal of nine Scientology members accused of corruption and theft, ruling it lacked the authority to decide whether Scientology is a religion.
French prosecutors had argued the church was a sect that defrauded people of their money.
France registers the church on a list of 173 groups that should be tracked to prevent cult activities. Most other European countries also don't accept it as a religion.
Founded in 1954 by science fiction writer L. Ron Hubbard, the Los Angeles-based organization teaches that technology can expand the mind and help solve human problems.
Copyright 1999 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
ABC News World: God and Country - U.S. Report Assesses Religious Freedom Around the World
China, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, Serbia, Burma (Myanmar), Afghanistan, Iraq and Iran commit some of the harshest violations of religious freedom, according to a new report from the State Department.
By Eric Wagner. ABCNEWS.com
W A S H I N G T O N, Sept. 9 — The State Department today issued its first report ever that focuses exclusively on "violations of religious freedoms" in 194 countries.
The Clinton administration didn't want to issue such relatively narrow assessments, arguing that its annual "human rights" report provides a broader picture of internal practices in the rest of the world.
But Congress, lobbied intensely by a number of religious groups, eventually had its way. A law passed last year called on U.S. embassies to more carefully monitor religious liberties in their host countries. In Washington, the State Department was compelled to appoint an ambassador to write the International Religious Freedom Report.
It "forces the State Department for the first time to deal with the issue of religious persecution in a direct way, something it didn't have to do before," said Rabbi David Saperstein, chairman of a separate investigative commission created by the same law that mandated today's report.
Report May Offend Key Allies
The report is not likely to be well-received in the capitals of some of America's most important allies. The first sentence of the section on Saudi Arabia states that "freedom of religion does not exist."
Based on the information contained in the report, Secretary of State Madeleine Albright is required to designate a list of "Countries of Particular Concern," which then would be subject to a range of actions from private conversations to full-blown economic sanctions.
But the law doesn't specifically require the secretary to take this separate action immediately, and officials indicate she will not.
"It would be premature to talk about sanctions," said Ambassador Robert Seiple, who leads the State Department's Religious Freedoms Office. "We do not look at this bill as a punitive bill, as a way to punish other countries."
A Different Point of View
Although the religious freedom report was prepared by the same office that publishes the annual human rights reports, the Religious Freedom Report sees the world through a different lens.
For example, the section covering Germany, not considered a major human rights violator, contains a lengthy discussion of that country's often contentious relationship with the Church of Scientology.
Cuba, often the subject of official U.S. scorn for its human rights practices, gets generally light treatment in today's report.
And even as President Clinton prepares to meet with Chinese President Jiang Zemin, the report hits hard at China, saying that citizens who engage in unregistered religious activity can face "harassment, prolonged detention and incarceration in prison."
ABCNEWS' Eric Wagner reports from the State Department.
BBC News Online: World: Europe: Scientology faces French ban
France might consider banning the Church of Scientology, which it regards as a sect rather than a religion.
The Justice Minister, Elisabeth Guigou, made it clear that the future of the organization in France was under close scrutiny.
Her remarks came as US officials expressed concern over the growing intolerance shown to minority religious groups in some European countries. (...)
In the United States, the Church of Scientology is regarded as a religion.
However, a global report on religious freedom by the State Department said the group continued to report discrimination and harassment in some European countries.
In some cases it was viewed as an economic enterprise. In Germany, said the report, officials had described it as a criminal organization.
The State Department said that asking people and companies whether they had associations with the group was an abuse of human rights.
Jesse Prince files an affidavit in the Lisa McPherson case in Clearwater. He is a class IX auditor and C/S.
He says he has personally witnessed executive decisions directed to church members telling them to "end cycle", meaning telling them to die. He has personally read written instructions from Senior C/S International, Ray Mithoff, concerning the following individuals:
Diane Morrison had cancer. Radiation treatment is forbidden by Scientology.
Ray Mithoff instructed her to end cycle and her husband was ordered to take her home so she did not die on any Church property.
Ted Cormier had Parkinson’s disease. He was ordered to Flag for NOTS 34 auditing to cure his cancer. This did not cure it so Mithoff sent him orders in his preclear file to end cycle. He died.
Jesse viewed a videotape of a television interview of Roxanne Friend. She had cancer that could have been successfully treated by medical means. She was kidnapped in California and driven across country in a motor home to Clearwater where she was held against her will. This prevented her from getting treatment. After she escaped she gave the television interview. She disclosed she was beyond treatment because of the delay and subsequently died.
Jesse says he witnessed and participated in 4 isolation watches on people having a psychotic break. All psychotic breaks had 3 things in common, the person was denied sleep for days, the person was given a wrong indication of their work performance being inadequate, the person was then subjected to further wrong indications in ethics.
The person is locked in a room with two guards at the door. The guards are not allowed to talk to the person in the psychotic break, they are only allowed to physically restrain the person. They are trained to force the person to consume food and water.
The reason for the guards is that the person wants to leave and makes many attempts to leave. But the guards prevent them from leaving until the C/S says ok. This is a direct quote from the technical material of the Introspection Rundown:
"Dear Joe. What can you guarantee me if you are let out of isolation? If the person’s reply shows continued irresponsibility toward other dynamics or fixation on one dynamic to the exclusion of others damaged, the C/S must inform the person of his continued isolation and why. Example: Dear Joe. I’m sorry but no go on coming out of isolation yet…"
In 1987 Jesse was assigned to an isolation watch on another Sea Org member in a psychotic break. She fought to escape and had numerous injuries from beating on walls and the door, trying to get away.
Her mother was desperately trying to find her so during a calm moment Jesse monitored a call to her mother after telling her what to say. She lied to her mother and said she was ok and when the telephone call started to get "weird" Jesse ended it. This was a public relations nightmare for Scientology and this was why Jesse had the girl lie to her family about what was really going on with her.
This went on for 2 months. After the girl was stable for a week, she was made to sign a release form that said Scientology was not responsible for what happened to her and she was then allowed to go home. Jesse said if he had not forced the girl to drink water, she would have died.
Jesse then reviewed Lisa McPherson’s auditing files and the isolation watch "caretaker logs" and her ethics file. The last 3 and ½ days of the caretaker logs were missing, which is not an accident.
All psychotic breaks cases have their auditing folders sent to the Tech Unit of RTC for review. It is then returned via the Senior C/S International to ensure compliance to their orders. Status reports would go to Ray Mithoff, Snr C/S Int and he would take them to RTC. Then, David Miscavige, Ray Mithoff and Marty Rathbun discuss the various options available to Scientology on how to deal with the public relations flap. These 3 people would have met and discussed what to do because Lisa was not improving in isolation and she was a public relations flap since she had removed her clothes and run down the street naked.
From his study of the available records, Jesse concludes that Miscavige, Mithoff, and Rathbun had no option but to let her die in isolation. They could not take her to the hospital for emergency medical treatment and risk embarrassing questions from the attending physicians, press, and authorities with likely claims of imprisonment and abuse being made by Lisa upon her recovery. Thus they chose the "end of cycle" option, which is permitting and ordering the person to die.
In Jesse’s opinion, Lisa was held against her will in isolation. She was not improving and her morbid condition was described in the caretaker logs.
Rather than face the public relations flap, Miscavige, Mithoff and Rathbun ordered her death, it was no accident.
Note: Lisa McPherson died a slow death. The Corner found her death was due to dehydration.
My fellow Scientologists: Let’s not allow Miscavige to get away with this.
If you have knowledge that proves his crimes here – turn him in and put him behind bars.
If you fail to do that, the next person’s blood on his hands, will be blood on yours too. (Criminal Track)
BBC News Online: World: Europe: Published at 18:29 GMT 19:29 UK
Scientology trial opens in France
Seven members of the Church of Scientology have gone on trial in France on charges of fraud.
The trial, in the southern city of Marseille, has led to renewed calls for the banning of Scientology in France, which officially regards it as a dangerous cult rather than a religion.
The charges against the seven defendants - who are alleged to have obtained large sums of money from fellow sect-members by fraudulent means - date back to the late 1980s.
The case opened amid controversy over the disappearance of 50 boxes of evidence from the Marseille prosecutor's office.
Justice Minister Elisabeth Guigou - who has said France might consider banning the sect - said the loss of the files was simply a mistake. The church says they have been deliberately destroyed.
But it is the third time in a year that evidence against Scientologists in France has disappeared.
The court rejected a defense bid to have the case postponed because the loss of the files would "make a fair trial impossible".
'A Roman circus'
The church itself - which claims some 40,000 adherents in France - has accused the French government of "trying to turn the justice system into a Roman circus.
"For 10 years, these defendants have been subjected to outrageous harassment - jail, hysterical media for the last month, and then the very files that would prove their innocence were destroyed," said Heber Jentzsch, President of the Church of Scientology International.
The group - which figures on a government list of 173 to be tracked and deterred from practicing cult activities - says its members are subjected to slander and persecution.
Popular with Hollywood stars
Scientology - founded in 1954 by science fiction writer L Ron Hubbard - teaches that technology can expand the mind and help solve human problems.
The sect has many high-profile Hollywood adherents, including John Travolta, Tom Cruise and Nicole Kidman.
In the United States, the Church of Scientology is regarded as a religion.
However, a global report on religious freedom by the State Department said the group continued to report discrimination and harassment in some European countries, including Germany where it is viewed as a criminal organization.
Jail sought against French Scientologist - Web posted at: 12:43 PM EDT (1643 GMT)
MARSEILLE, France (Reuters) - A state prosecutor Wednesday asked a court to jail a former leader of the Church of Scientology in France in a fraud trial.
The prosecutor recommended that Xavier Delamare, a former leader of the church in southeastern France, be sent to prison for 18 months, with another 18 months suspended, and a 200,000 franc ($32,000) fine.
Delamare, 42, and six other church members were on trial in this southern port city for fraud, violence and illegally practicing medicine in connection with courses in spiritual purification organized for church members.
The trial opened Monday and is expected to end by Thursday. The charges carry a maximum five-year sentence.
The prosecutor asked the court to condemn five other defendants to two years suspended and denial of civil rights for five years. He sought a nominal sentence against the last defendant, Dominique Pons, who has turned against the movement.
The Church of Scientology has denied the charges and accused French authorities of harassment.
The trial has been marred by the disappearance of legal evidence. The disappearance was blamed by French authorities on a court clerk's mistake.
Judge Marie-Annick Varlamoff has rejected the defendants' arguments that the disappearance of documents made a fair trial impossible.
Copyright 1999 Reuters. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
David Miscavige files an affidavit in the Wollersheim case in California: (Criminal Track)
"RTC is exclusively concerned with the orthodoxy of the Scientology religion so that it forever remains faithful to the teachings of L. Ron Hubbard, the Founder of the religion and the one source of its Scriptures."
"As Chairman of the Board, the most senior position in RTC, I am uniquely interested in the standard application of the Scripture of Scientology as detailed in Hubbard Communication Office Policy Letters and Hubbard Communication Office Bulletins and the spoken words of Mr. Hubbard on the subjects of Dianetics; and Scientology as recorded on audio tape, video, film and in written transcriptions of these materials. I inspect and correct departures from the standard application of the Scripture of the religion. I also ensure that any attempted perversion of the technology of Dianetics and Scientology is rapidly dealt with, to keep the religion pure so that all people may benefit from the application of Mr. Hubbard’s breakthroughs in the fields of the mind, the spirit and life."
"My role is described above. Mr. Hubbard was the Founder of the religion and the sole Source of its Scripture. A primary and fundamental doctrine of our faith is that the teachings be kept pure and that the only source of those teachings is Mr. Hubbard. Indeed, my role encompasses the responsibility of seeing the religion does not lose its original teachings and that no one ever assumes Mr. Hubbard’s role as the source of its religious teachings."
Note: You see, he does know what his hat is. And, his and RTC’s betrayal of LRH’s trust to do the above, puts them in a condition of Treason. But let’s go on and see what else David says…
"The GO operated in complete secrecy and conducted its affairs independently of other church personnel."
Note: So does Religious Technology Center and Church of Spiritual Technology.
"There were also examples in which GO staff had used unscrupulous means to deal with people perceived as enemies of the religion – means that were completely against Scientology tenets and policy, not to mention the law."
Note: There are plenty of entries on this time track that shows Miscavige and RTC doing the same thing. In fact, there are many cases on this time track where they have had to pay out millions of dollars in parishioners donation’s because they were found guilty in courts of doing just exactly that. And that, ladies and gentlemen, is what your fees buy…
"Such treatment was also the GO’s response to church staff members who inquired into their activities or were perceived by the GO to be interfering with GO affairs."
Note: Once again, Miscavige has done this too. Take his expelling of about 600 people at the mission holders conference as an example. Take the hundreds of people he has expelled since then simply because they challenged his squirreling of tech or policy.
Also, he has used intelligence black operations on some of these people after expelling them. Again resulting in wasting millions of dollars of parishioner’s donations to defend lawsuits and pay for settlements and awards against Scientology. To make it worse, none of it should have happened in the first place – because they were right! You are squirreling the tech! (Criminal Track)
RUSSIA: Russia Scientologists face Moscow teaching ban. - By Michael Steen - Reuters English News Service - (C) Reuters Limited 1999.
MOSCOW, Oct 7 (Reuters) - A Russian branch of the U.S.-based Church of Scientology is threatened with closure after a court found it guilty of teaching without a license, a judge said on Thursday.
The Hubbard Humanitarian Association branch of the international group - founded on the teachings of science fiction writer L. Ron Hubbard - fell foul of complex laws requiring all organizations conducting teaching courses to obtain a permit.
"The court has declared the registration illegal and ordered the founders to liquidate their organization," Judge Oleg Denisevich of Ostankinsky District Court told Reuters.
Alexei Danchenkov at the Hubbard Humanitarian Centre admitted the group had made some minor errors when applying for a permit in 1993, but said these had been corrected in 1997.
"The case is not closed, we are going to appeal. The judge was not objective," he said.
RUSSIAN ORTHODOX CHURCH WELCOMES RULING
Russia's mainstream Orthodox Church, long outspoken in its condemnation of attempts by alternative religions to win over parishioners, welcomed the ruling.
"Our church is strongly critical of them (the Church of Scientology),"said spokeswoman Yelena Spiranskaya. "We define them as a totalitarian sect."
Scientology branches have been investigated by police in countries across Europe, particularly Germany, where supporters likened themselves to Jews being persecuted during the Nazi era.
German officials say the group is no more than an economic organization exploiting its members for profit.
Members of Scientology take personality tests and are then invited to pay for courses and literature which the group says helps them realize their full potential.
The doors to Moscow's Hubbard Humanitarian Association do not risk being shut until after the group has had a chance to appeal to a higher court in the next few weeks.
The Church of Scientology 's Moscow offices were raided by police armed with automatic weapons and bulletproof vests in February, but there was no official word on whether this was linked to the court case.
It has not all been bad news for the group, which counts film stars Tom Cruise and John Travolta among its members.
Moscow's popular radio station Ekho Moskvy announced on Wednesday that L. Ron Hubbard had come first in a poll of listeners to find the "Personality of the Century".
He beat Mahatma Gandhi, Martin Luther King, and Mother Theresa of Calcutta to the number one spot.
The Moscow Times Page 3 - Church of Scientology Has License Revoked - Oksana Yablokova
The Moscow center of the Church of Scientology, a controversial international organization, has lost its license after a city district court ruled that the group's registration documents were not in order.
The Humanitarian Hubbard Center, which has been operating in Moscow for six years, said Wednesday's ruling was politically motivated and part of a Russian Orthodox Church effort to limit the influence of other faiths.
Prosecutors say they first began looking into the center's activities about two years ago after receiving dozens of complaints from parents about the Scientologists' methods of teaching their children.
Earlier this year, the city prosecutor's office and the tax police raided the center's office in northeast Moscow, confiscating boxes of paperwork.
"We examined their documentation and found they had broken the law when registering," Yevgeny Manerkin of the prosecutor's office said Thursday.
In the registration documents submitted to the Justice Ministry, three of the 10 people listed as founders of the center were found to have no connection to it at all, Manerkin said.
Center spokesman Alexei Danchenkov said the documents were corrected in 1997, when the group reapplied for registration, but the prosecutor at the trial persisted in referring to the original documents.
He said the center, which is registered as a nonprofit organization, was also under investigation by the tax police.
Danchenkov said he believes the Scientologists are being targeted for political reasons.
"These are methods of eradicating nonprofit organizations and are tied to the ongoing struggle of the Orthodox Church to re- establish its complete dominance," he said.
Russia adopted a new law in 1997 limiting the activities of nontraditional faiths, which has been used to crack down on religious groups.
The Church of Scientology was founded by science fiction writer L. Ron Hubbard in the 1950s and now claims to have 8 million followers worldwide. Its headquarters are in Los Angeles.
Hubbard's books, most prominently the basic Scientological text "Dianetics," are published in more than 30 languages and distributed in over 100 countries.
Scientologists call themselves a religious group and the group is registered as such in the United States and Australia. European countries have largely refused to grant Scientology tax-free religious status and the group has faced a number of high-profile trials, particularly in Germany and France.
In 1996, the German government announced it was starting a federal campaign to keep Scientologists from certain public jobs such as counseling and teaching.
The Humanitarian Hubbard Center in Moscow holds classes for about 200 students a week in spiritual self-improvement. The center also sells a large quantity of books written by Hubbard and collects membership dues.
The center was still operating Thursday with students attending the classes. The Scientologists have 10 days to appeal the Ostankinsky district court's decision, which Danchenkov said they will do.
"We will keep fighting. I'm sure we will be able to protect thecenter," he said.
Representatives of the U.S. Congress have again introduced a bill criticizing Germany for its treatment of Scientology and other cults. From the chairman of the House International Relations Committee, Benjamin A. Gilman:
"The problem of religious intolerance in Europe is widely recognized, even in Europe itself. It should be obvious -- especially to Europeans – that intolerance is much more harmful than is any so-called harm that may arise from adherence to one or another of the many new religions that have arisen in the world in the past few years. 'Germany is a country that should to be a leader in tolerance, and ought to be setting an example.
Sadly, it is not doing so. Indeed, not only have countries such as Austria, Belgium, and France joined in its efforts to suppress disfavored groups on the basis of their religion or belief, but newly-developing democracies in Eastern Europe are following Germany's example. 'As recently as this week I have personally asked German government officials to open a dialogue, in particular, with Scientologists, which seems to be the group that they are most anxious about, but I have been rebuffed, as has the United States government when it made the same request. 'And so I will be joining in co-sponsoring a resolution on this subject, and will work to find other opportunities to use my influence to foster an atmosphere of tolerance of differences on the grounds of religion or belief."
From United Press International:
"The United States has 'been a little weak-kneed' about putting pressure on the German government to be more sincere about letting people worship how they like, said the bill's House sponsor, Rep. Matt Salmon, R-Ariz., a Mormon who has also worked on religious freedom issues in China. Salmon added that the documented intolerance against Scientologists and others in Germany should not be overlooked simply because it is a U. S. ally.
"The resolution calls on the German government to prevent further discrimination, according to international agreements, and to open a dialogue with minority religious groups. Salmon introduced a similar measure in 1998, but it was defeated soundly on the House floor. Actress Anne Archer, a Scientologist who has addressed officials in Europe and elsewhere on religious freedom, represented Hollywood at Thursday's Capitol Hill event. 'If we do not insist that democratic governments abide by their human rights commitments, then we will be ignored when we try to remedy abuses by totalitarian regimes,' said Archer, who has starred in films such as 'Patriot Games' and 'Fatal Attraction.'"
Arnie Lerma reported on the news conference to announce the introduction of the bill.
"Arriving at the press conference at a few minutes before 2 pm, I was greeted at the door by a Scientology 'David Miscavige clone' John Terbush, who tried to prevent my entry. He accused me of wanting to create a scene.
I told him I had no intention of disrupting his dog and pony act, and brushed him off, and entered. Opening statements reveal that they have only 48 co-sponsors for this tacit endorsement of Scientology's worldwide history of criminal activity. Down from 62 co-sponsors for previous Travolta show.
"After fifteen minutes or so, I took my jacket off. And was immediately asked to step into the hall, where the Capitol Police politely asked me to provide ID, and indicated that they had been notified that I planned to create some disturbance. And that under the rules of Congress posters and placards were not allowed. Perhaps it was the red on white Scientology KILLS T-Shirt. After I told them about the visit to my home a few weeks ago by the FBI Anti-Terrorist Task force and the phone conversation with Agent O'Conner indicating that the Bureau suspected $cientology of providing the fake anonymous report, as well as the FACT that Scientology was convicted in the largest domestic spying case in US history AND that they did JAIL TIME. When I said JAIL TIME, both he and his Commander's attitude became very cooperative, and both took copies of The Art of Deception. Thierry DuChanac was seen to throw up his hands as I was allowed to re-enter what Scientology had hoped to be a one line show for them.
"And I reentered the room, and went up to one of the cameramen who was still running his camera, explained what happened, and his camera then zoomed in on: SCIENTOLOGY: WORSE THAN YOU THINK! and the People Against Scientology logo may make it to the evening news in Germany, showing truth crushing a swastika. [I] gave the Aide a copy of my flyers and Art of Deception, telling him simply, 'I was just asked to leave the Press conference, your chairman needs to understand exactly what he has stepped in.
"Scientology listed the following 'AUTHORITIES' for references to back up today's pony show.
Der Tagesspiegel reported on the hearing in an October 23rd article.
"On Thursday afternoon, a phalanx of American representatives, backed by Hollywood celebrities, sharply attacked the Federal Republic of Germany.
The majority Republican politicians let it be known that a new resolution which was extremely critical of Germany would be brought before Congress.
What's new this time around, though, is that the 'undisputed leadership role of Germany in Europe' is alleged to be responsible for the suppression of freedom of religion by 'other governments such as Poland, France and Denmark who are, regrettably, trying to imitate the Federal Republic.' Other than that, the accusations are nothing new.
"Among other things, the representatives said: 'hate is taught in German schools,' 'the government's persecution of minority religions has destroyed many artistic careers,' 'thousands need our help, because their voices are being suppressed in Germany.' Republican Mark Foley from Florida threatened to make freedom of religion in Germany a theme at the World Trade Organization (WTO). He also said that Jehovah's Witnesses, Mormons, Orthodox Jews and Evangelical Christians were discriminated against in the Federal Republic of Germany. He said it was 'shocking that something like this could happen in a democracy.' California Democrat Xavier Becerra asserted that hundreds of Americans were denied entrance into Germany because they were Scientologists or members of other small religions. Matt Salmon, Republican representative from Arizona and himself a Mormon, gave his impression that the federal government was less of a problem than were state and local governments. Salmon asserted that jazz musician Chick Corea was stopped from entering the Federal Republic of Germany.
"Gilman and Salmon said afterwards to the 'Tagesspiegel' that they did not know of a single actual case where Americans could not travel to Germany because of their religious affiliation. He said that Corea had not obtained the permit he needed to appear for a concert in Germany. In response to the question as to what kind of permit a musician needed to appear in Germany, Representative Salmon said, 'That is just what Chick Corea told us.'" (ARS Week in Review)
Detroit News: Officials deny church's charitable status
LONDON -- Government officials denied the Church of Scientology charitable status on Thursday, saying it does not provide any public services. Scientologists said they would appeal the decision, announced by the Charity Commission, which regulates charities in England and Wales. The commission said the church did not meet the essential test for charitable status -- "that of conferring public benefit." It said Scientology activities "were private in nature and in the benefit they delivered." The Church of Scientology, which says it has 100,000 adherents in Britain, has had increasing friction with the British government.
Scientology leader can be named defendant in Florida death case
December 15, 1999 - Web posted at: 10:08 AM EST (1508 GMT)
TAMPA, Florida (AP) -- A Florida judge has ruled that Scientology leader David Miscavige can be named as a defendant in a lawsuit over the death of a church member who spent 17 days in isolation at a church retreat.
Lisa McPherson, 36, died December 5, 1995, as church staffers took her to see a Scientologist doctor. An autopsy found she died of a blood vessel blockage in her left lung caused by severe dehydration and bed rest.
Scientology officials said she had been taken to the retreat to recover from a mental breakdown and had been well cared for.
Her family's wrongful death lawsuit alleges Miscavige "totally controls" the church and that his ecclesiastical role is part of a setup to shield Scientology and its leaders from liability.
According to the lawsuit, Miscavige had been informed of McPherson's deteriorating condition and staffers acted on his orders as she became psychotic and was "imprisoned."
Hillsborough County Circuit Judge James S. Moody ruled Tuesday that the leader could be added to the lawsuit. Church leaders said the step could add years to the case.
Miscavige, 39, took the reins of Scientology in the early 1980s. He is credited with improving church operations, updating its materials and securing tax-exempt status from the IRS.
The church was founded in 1954 by the late science-fiction writer L. Ron Hubbard, who said people gather traumatic memories in past lives that hinder them in the present. Scientologists believe those memories can be cleared through church counseling.
McPherson was hospitalized after police found her disoriented after a fender bender. Several Scientologists showed up at the hospital and checked her out against the advice of doctors.
Copyright 1999 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
A.r.s Week in Review - Double Crossed
Los Angeles' New Times published an article on Scientology's private investigators, dirty operations and harassment activities.
"Here's why you should be skeptical about what Graham Berry and Robert Cipriano say about the Church of Scientology: Berry's been after the church for years, and he makes no secret of his desire to litigate the 45-year-old organization to its knees. For years, he's been known for brash court strategies meant not only to take a bite out of the church but also to embarrass it publicly. To a client, he once said: 'My agenda is to bite Scientology in the butt and to cause it as much grief as possible.' He's also notorious for phone-book-thick court documents filled with tales of conspiracy that reach back to Scientology's 1954 founding by the late science-fiction writer L. Ron Hubbard. Last year, Berry filed a 312-page complaint on behalf of a former member of the church who claimed he'd been defrauded by everyone from Scientologist actor John Travolta to President Bill Clinton. In August, a judge declared Berry a vexatious litigant, a rare penalty handed out to attorneys who tie up courts with frivolous lawsuits.
"Robert Cipriano, meanwhile, is an admitted liar who says that he willingly committed perjury last year by lying in a deposition taken under oath. He was willing to accept financial help for his perjured testimony but now claims to be doing the righteous thing by speaking out about it.
His own court-filed declarations make him out to be something of a confused, pathetic loser who is usually either running from a bad situation or running toward someone who will give him a handout.
"Cipriano says in court documents that five years ago he was duped by Scientology operatives into making false claims that Berry is a pedophile who bragged about having sex with boys as young as 12. Those claims ended up on the Internet, and Cipriano says that Scientology, which considers Berry a bitter enemy, contacted his colleagues, clients, and friends about them. Last year, Cipriano says, he was encouraged by Scientology attorneys to testify in a deposition about his false claims and, when he agreed, Scientology rewarded him handsomely. Cipriano says that when he agreed to help Scientology destroy one of its enemies, the church leased him a house and a car, helped finance his nonprofit business, and paid off a debt that freed him from a felony probation sentence. Cipriano also says his Scientology attorney rewarded him with a job at Earthlink, the Internet provider started by Scientologists. Berry, meanwhile, says the church's harassment has severely hampered his ability to practice law.
"In 1967, Hubbard issued his 'fair game' policy, which announced that a suppressive person, or SP, 'may be deprived of property or injured by any means, by any Scientologist. He may be tricked, sued or lied to, or destroyed.' Since then, former Scientologists, government officials, and journalists have claimed to have become targets of 'fair game':
"Paulette Cooper, author of the The Scandal of Scientology, became the target of Operation Freakout, an attempt by church operatives to either drive her insane or get her put in prison. The operatives managed to get Cooper indicted by framing her for making bomb threats against the church.
She was only exonerated when documents detailing Operation Freakout were discovered by government agents.
"In Florida, Scientology made the town of Clearwater one of its two world headquarters. When Clearwater Mayor Gabe Cazares complained about the church in 1976, FBI documents show the church launched a campaign to spread rumors about his sex life.
"Scientology's most ambitious crusade was directed at its arch enemy: the Internal Revenue Service. In 1977, FBI agents raided the Church of Scientology in both Los Angeles and Washington, D.C., and discovered damning evidence that, for several years, Scientology operatives in the church's secretive Guardian's Office had been breaking into the IRS and other federal offices in Washington and stealing government documents. To this day, Scientology's pilfering of records, which Hubbard designated Operation Snow White, is the single largest infiltration of the U.S. government in history.
"Eventually, 11 Scientologists, including Guardian's Office director Mary Sue Hubbard (wife of the church founder) were sentenced to prison. 'The crimes committed by these defendants is of a breadth and scope previously unheard,' wrote U.S. Attorney Charles Ruff in a sentencing memorandum. 'It is interesting to note that the Founder of their organization, unindicted co-conspirator L. Ron Hubbard, wrote that 'truth is what is true for you,' and 'illegal' is that which is 'contrary to statistics or policy' and not pursuant to Scientology's 'approved program.''
"Scientology officials have argued repeatedly that the 1968 policy forever ended the practice of fair game, but former high-ranking Scientologists say the 1968 policy letter was merely a PR tactic and that the policy has never gone away. ''Fair game' is still in effect. I don't care what they've said,' says Frank Oliver, who was, until 1993, an operative in Scientology's Office of Special Affairs, the intelligence-gathering agency that replaced the Guardian's Office. Oliver and other former Scientologists tell New Times that OSA picked up where the GO left off, fair-gaming enemies on behalf of church leaders. Oliver describes his duties with OSA: 'Spy on people. Gather intelligence. Write reports.' Oliver's last assignment before leaving Scientology was to help Kendrick Moxon and other officials establish a special unit to target the Cult Awareness Network (CAN). Oliver says the goal of the unit was to recruit plaintiffs to sue CAN, which Scientology wanted to put out of business. Moxon was intimately involved in the effort that finally did just that. In Oliver's opinion, there's little doubt that his former colleagues have targeted Graham Berry.
"In his first high-profile case for Scientology, [Eugene] Ingram took out full-page ads in Eastern newspapers in 1982 looking for information in a bad-check case. Ingram then went to the press with accusations that Boston attorney Michael Flynn had concocted a scheme to steal millions from an L. Ron Hubbard bank account. (Flynn was litigating several cases against Scientology at the time.) Ingram's chief piece of evidence against Flynn was a declaration by a man named Ala Tamimi, who said that Flynn had tried to use his brother to pass a bad check on Hubbard's account. Former high-ranking Scientologist Stacy Brooks tells New Times that the ads and the Tamimi declaration were all part of a Scientology scam to ruin Flynn's reputation -- she knows because she wrote the ads. 'Ingram manufactures whatever evidence he wants,' she says. Ultimately, Tamimi admitted in yet another court declaration that he'd been paid by Ingram to write a declaration falsely accusing Flynn.
"A Chicago teenager, Jonathan Nordquist, says he was convinced in 1991 to sign a misleading declaration by Ingram. Nordquist testified in a court case that Ingram paid him $300 just for meeting him to discuss making the declaration. '[Ingram] said, 'Now this isn't paying you for the declaration.' He insisted it wasn't. It was just for my time. It is the highest paying job I ever had,' Nordquist testified.
"In 1994, a warrant was issued for Ingram's arrest on charges of impersonating an officer after he flashed a badge at a Tampa, Florida, woman and told her he was a police detective seeking information about a local sheriff's possible involvement in a prostitution ring.
"In 1995, Rubye Ward, 74, says Ingram identified himself as 'Jack Hoff,' saying he was a former classmate of her son, Grady. She turned over some photographs of her son, who was an outspoken critic of Scientology being sued by the church. Scientology officials later admitted in court documents that Ingram had, in fact, persuaded Rubye to turn over the photographs.
"When New Times asked Moxon about Cipriano's allegations, he responded by denigrating Graham Berry and sending over a packet of documents that described Berry's numerous court sanctions. Moxon said Cipriano's August declaration was actually Berry's doing and that given the chance, Cipriano wouldn't back up that declaration's allegations. 'The [August] declaration is peppered with false statements. You will never get Cipriano to affirm the contents of the declaration under oath -- he knows it is full of lies,' Moxon wrote in a letter to New Times. When he was told that New Times had already spoken to Cipriano, who had repeated verbally what he had written and had turned over voluminous records to back up his version of events, Moxon started questioning a New Times writer about his motives. Repeatedly asked to talk about whether he had leased Cipriano a car and a house and had paid off his felony debt, Moxon instead questioned whether New Times had paid anyone for information for this story. (It hasn't.)"
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