26- SPOTLIGHT October 3, 1994
What follows is the exact wording of a press release issued on September 14 by
the office of public affairs of the Church of Scientology International. The
press release announces a new propaganda campaign by the church against reunited
This is a continuation of a similar well-funded media blitz by the Scientologists in recent months in which they have repeatedly echoed myths about World War II history that have been thoroughly debunked by noted revisionist historians such as David Irving, Ernst Zundel, Robert Faurrison, Arthur Butz, Bradley Smith and others.
The SPOTLIGHT has previously pointed out that although long-time Scientologist and church "field staff member" Tom Marcellus is the leader of the clique that illicitly seized control of the property of the Institute for Historical Review (IHR), the beleaguered revisionist research group, the IHR has yet to take a forthright public stand in condemnation of the Church of Scientology's ongoing media campaign that is reaching opinion makers in power centers such as Washington, New York and around the world.
Revisionist critics of the Scientology campaign against Germany point out that although the church has been very vocal in its denunciations of alleged German discrimination against racial and religious minorities, the Scientologists, in the past, did not likewise campaign against similar documented actions by the governments of the Soviet Union or its puppet regimes in Eastern Europe, not to mention the government of Israel which has been harsh and brutal toward minorities, including Christian missionaries within it borders.
In other publications the church has suggested that because of alleged intolerance by the Germans against racial and religious minorities that Germany should be denied a seat on the United Nations Security Council.
Public Information Campaign Hits German Government Intolerance
The Church of Scientology has launched a major public information campaign exposing what church officials termed "the German government's active role in fueling the growing intolerance, discrimination and violence against religious and ethnic minorities in Germany."
The full-page ads, which will run weekly for five consecutive weeks in both the Washington Post and the New York Times cite, as evidence, a variety of state-sponsored actions which are increasing German intolerance against minorities.
"The purpose in running the ads," according to Church spokesperson Leisa Goodman, is "to let the world know that Germany is reverting to old prejudices and increasing violence. International awareness is needed to ensure that Germany gets back on track as a democratic nation will full religious and civil liberties."
The first ad carries examples of civil liberties violations including a raid on a printing plant which published a book comparing current government practices to the Nazi-era. All copies of the book at the plant and even the printing plates were seized. At the same time the government funded a documentary in which Ignatz Bubis, Chairman of the Central Council of Jews in Germany, called "pure Nazi propaganda."
Subsequent ads document the German police complicity in hate crimes against Iranians, Africans, Turks, Muslims and other ethnic and religious minorities; an ordinance in Hamburg prohibiting the sale of rental of property to members of the Church of Scientology; and the official exclusion of Scientologists from the Christian. Democratic Union, the country's largest political party.
"The point," explained Ms. Goodman, "is that no law abiding citizen should be arbitrarily stripped of his rights because of his faith or the color of his skin. That's what's happening in Germany today, and now is the time for people to become aware of the situation and ma their voices heard."
The start of the ad series comes just days after the German government's controversial exhibit on German resistance to Hitler, opened at Columbia University. The official government display entitled "Against HitlerGerman Resistance to National Socialism 1933-1945," has been broadly criticized for using prestigious U.S. landmarks like Columbia University and the Library of Congress in an attempt to shape American opinion by rewriting history.
"While the German government is publicly posturing about its commitment to racial and religious tolerance," Goodman commented, "it is actively pursuing a planned and willful course of social, economic and political discrimination against minorities in Germany. This exhibit, like other similar German public relations efforts, is pure hypocrisy.
"Despite letters of concern from members of Congress, congressional caucuses, human rights groups, and a United Nations complaint being filed, the German government has done nothing to address the problems or has belittled the situation," Ms. Goodman said.
Goodman noted that as in the 30s at the height of Nazi propaganda, the world has an opportunity to intervene and prevent a terrible tragedy.
A spokesman of the German Embassy in Washington said the embassy has no reaction to the Scientologist ad campaign. A source close to the embassy said Germany does not recognize Scientology as a religion. Rather, it is "psychological terrorism," to recruit new members, particularly youngsters.
SPOTLIGHT October 3,1994.
The more information about the IHR controversy that emerges, the more convoluted
the affair becomes.
EXCLUSIVE TO THE SPOTLIGHT BY JOHN HENRY
An insider with the gang of conspirators who seized more than $1 million in books and equipment from the Institute for Historical Review (IHR) last year has revealed startling information.
According to the informant, all of the legal bills the embattled group have incurred since their "terribly disloyal ... coup d'etat" (to quote their lawyer, William S. Hulsy) have been paid for by Andrew E. Allen.
Allen, a wealthy investor and real estate speculator in upscale Marin County, California, has been identified as a deep cover agent for the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) in The SPOTLIGHT (Nov. 8, 1993). The ADL, in turn, is an unregistered agent for a foreign nation and operates illegally in direct defiance of the Foreign Agents Registration Act.
Further, according to the informant, Allen is the one who made the decision to break the publishing contract with Gen. Leon Degrelle, a first-hand witness to the Axis side during World War II.
The IHR published only one volume of the Degrelle series, Hitler: Born at Versailles. It was extremely successful, a fact which did not escape the notice of Allen's sponsors.. The coup d'etat followed, in which Allen was the prime mover. Immediately afterward, an IHR employee, Ted O'Keefe, wrote a letter to Degrelle canceling the publishing contract. The legitimate directors of the IHR have filed a lawsuit against Allen and the other bogus directors, Friedrich (Fritz) Berg and John Curry. Heavy damages are asked for. A temporary injunction has been awarded to the legitimate directors prohibiting, Allen, Berg and Curry from acting as directors of the IHR.
SPOTLIGHT November 29, 1999
Members of an international cult -- which holds special status in the U.S. have
been convicted in a French court. BY WILLIAM CARMICHAEL
Scientology is protected by a secret agreement with the government in the United States. But the group has no such protection in Europe, where it is identified as a cult and its activities closely monitored.
In its latest scrape with French authorities, for instance, former officials of the Church of Scientology (its official title) in southern France were convicted of fraud in mid-November. According to published reports, Xavier Delamare, who formerly headed the group in southeastern France, was sentenced to two years in jail with 18 months suspended and fined $16,000. Four other former members were given lesser suspended sentences.
Delamare, 42, was released from custody because he had spent 17 weeks in pre-trial detention. Two other former Scientologists were acquitted.
Those who were convicted -- who have now officially left the organization -- were found guilty of extracting sums of money from gullible people, who signed on for courses in "spiritual purification."
According to published reports, in one case of what the prosecution called a "monstrous swindle," a man was persuaded to spend $4,800 on an "electrometer," an instrument used by Scientologists to identify zones of "mental distress."
The group denounced the trial in Marseilles as a political lynching, carried out in a "climate of religious McCarthyism." The SPOTLIGHT reported Oct. 2, 1999, that a group of Scientologists, including Scientology spokesperson Gaetane Asselin, gathered in front of the court in protest. In mid-Septemher, a scandal erupted in the trial after court documents relating to the case disappeared.
The sentences were the third set of convictions since 1978 by French courts against officers of the controversial organization, which said that it was being persecuted and was appealing to international human rights organizations against the actions of the French state.
The cult has also accused the German government of persecution. According to published reports, President Clinton and Congress have been asked by movie star John Travolta to condemn the German state for alleged "religious intolerance."
Travolta and Clinton claim that their friendship has no connection to the U.S. view of Scientology and how it is treated overseas.
Germany also calls Scientology a cult.
In the United States, however, the cult has received a special dispensation from the IRS. This was a 180-degree turnaround from positions taken by various government agencies for years and represents a loss of hundreds of mllions in tax dollars to the U.S. Treasury.
The pact between the IRS and Scientology was inked following a series of secret meetings. The government refuses to release the official minutes of those get-togethers
8-SPOTLIGHT November 8, 1999,
FOR MORE THAN 200 YEARS the federal government has claimed to practice a
separation between church and state. That seemed to go by the wayside Oct. 21
when Sen. Michael Enzi (R-Wyo.) and Reps. Tom Davis (R-Va.), Mark Foley
(R-Fla.), Ben Gilman (R-N.Y), Matt Salmon (R-Ariz.) and Jose Serrano (D-N.Y)
announced they would introduce resolutions attacking Germany for religious
Liberty Lobby has always advocated freedom of religion in America. Rehgious freedom in Germany isn't what the resolution is about. The resolution is about Scientology and Scientologists using their pull in Washington to promote its "religion" in Germany.
The Germans, like several other nations, including the United States prior to 1993, believe Scientology is a business or "psycho-group" -- not a religion.
In 1993, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) reversed itself and granted Scientology religious exemptions. The reversal came after 25 years of fighting. The courts ruled in favor of the government repeatedly. (See The SPOTLIGHT Dec. 2, 1996, and others.)
For some reason, Fred Goldberg, then comissioner of the IRS, created a special committee to negotiate a settlement with Scientology outside of normal agency procedures. When the committee determined that all Scientology entities should be exempt from taxes, IRS tax analysts were ordered to ignore the substantive issues in reviewing the decision. The IRS has suspiciously refused to disclose any terms of the agreement. This is the first time the IRS has granted tax exemption and deductibility of contributions to donors by "negotiation" rather than on the basis of its own firm criteria.
It was the 1993 IRS decision that the State Department used to conclude that Germany is discriminating against Scientologists.
During a press conference at the Rayburn House Office Building in Washington, D.C., politicians went to great lengths to maintain the resolution is about more than Scientology.
"No religion or belief should be discriminated against," Enzi said. "This is a human rights issue."
If that's the case, the senator should look at home, not overseas. Where were the constitutional protections for the Branch Davidians when the government attacked Mt. Carmel in Waco, Texas? Where were the constitutional protections when a hanging judge, Walter Smith, gave five survivors 40 years, after the jury cleared the defendants of conspiracy to murder federal agent charges?
More scary than alleged persecution in a foreign land was a phrase uttered by Salmon. He said if Scientology is "an officially recognized religion" in the U.S., America needs to defend it abroad. The politicians left the press conference without taking questions. One question The SPOTLIGHT has is: What is "an officially recognized religion" and who recognizes it? Another question is: Will the senator and congressmen probe the 1993 IRS decision and tell Americans what happened? After all, the decision is costing taxpayers millions of dollars.
Write these representatives and your senators and congressman with these questions. Then let Liberty Lobby, publisher of The SPOTLIGHT, know what you find out.
SAVE THE CANAL
Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-Ala.) has started a drive to have the treaty that calls for the United States to turn over control of the Panama Canal on Dec. 31 renegotiated. Sessions has drafted Senate Concurrent Resolution 61. It calls for the U.S. to "negotiate security arrangements with the government of Panama that will protect the canal and ensure the territorial integrity of the Republic of Panama."
The resolution has seven co-sponsors, including Sen. Majority Leader Trent Lott (R-Miss.), Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Jesse Helms (R-N.C.) and Sens. Wayne Allard (R-Colo.), Tim Hutchinson (R-Ark.), James Inhofe (R-Okla.), Jon Kyl (R-Ariz.) and Strom Thurmond (R-S.C.).
Rep. Dana Rohrabacher (R-Calif) has introduced a similar resolution in the House.
Politicians claim "heavily-armed" narcotics-funded terrorist forces in Colombia have spread their bases and logistical operations into southern Panama. Panama, however, can't defend itself because that country's military was dissolved after the U.S. invasion in 1990.
Sessions also said "the Russian Mafia, Chinese Triad criminal organizations, Cuban government entities and certain groups from the Middle East ... are active in Panama, conducting weapons smuggling, money laundering and massive counterfeiting and piracy of United States products and intellectual property."
More than 70 percent of Americans opposed the giveaway when President Jimmy Carter negotiated the plan in 1979. There is still public opposition to the giveaway. Opponents cite Chicom involvement in Panama as a threat to the U.S. Hong Kong-based Hutchison Whampoa has close ties to the People's Republic of China and has served as a conduit for funding and acquiring technology for the Chinese People's Liberation Army. Still, Hutchison has been granted a 25- to 50-year lease to control the only port facility on both ends of the Panama Canal.
Hutchison's chairman "Li Ka-Slung and his Hong Kong-based company and subsidiaries are closely associated with the Beijing regime and have a history of acting as sources of funding or acting as intermediaries in deals of the People's Liberation Army," Rohrabacher said. "Despite being a billionaire and international tycoon, with business interests throughout the world, Li is a prominent player in the communist Chinese leadership's inner circle."
The congressman said U.S. intelligence has linked Li to the Chicom military. "The presence of entities linked to Beijiag controlling ports at both ends of 'the canal -increases" security risks, Rohrabacher added.
WHO IS IN CHARGE?
"Control" of the ports proved to be a contentious point during the hearing. Sen. Carl Levin (D-Mich.), the ranking member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, defended the treaty. He accused Rep. Bob Barr (R-Ga.) of lying about the deal. Barr's web site says: "Communist China has been granted control over port facilities at both ends of the Panama Canal, with power to decide who enters and exits."
Several expert witnesses said it isn't so. When Levin put the question point blank to Barr, the congressman said his comments "require explanation, but they are not incorrect." Barr said it is "likely" the Chicoms will acquire that power "later on."
The fear of what will happen in the future, as opposed to what is happening today, caused the greatest contention at the hearing. Marine Corps Gen. Charles Wilhelm, commander-in-chief of the U.S. Southern Command, led a panel claiming the canal is safe.
Several senators, supported by comments by former Secretary of Defense Caspar Weinberger, said the Chicom influence could be a future threat.
"You cannot exist as a Chinese company if you do not do what the government tells you to do," Weinberger said. He suggested the U.S. work out the details on the right America has to defend the canal.
2- SPOTLIGHT October 18, 1999
TRAVOLTA DODGES SCIENTOLOGY TRIAL. Actor/Scientologist John Travolta cut short a visit to Paris for several television and newspaper interviews to promote the French opening of his movie, The General's Daughter. Instead he flew back to Los Angeles in a private plane. The seven Scientologists are are accused of charging up to $30,000 worth of bogus treatments. Judgment on the seven Scientologists has been delayed until Nov. 15.
10- SPOTLIGHT October 4, 1999
A church-cum-cult, protected in the United States, is in trouble in France.
EXCLUSIVE To TIM SPOTLIGHT BY WILLIAM CARMICHAEL
The Church of Scientology (CoS), a tax-free religious organization in the U.S. according to the IRS -- but officially a "cult" in France-is in trouble with the Gauls again.
Seven Scientology officials accused of fraudulently obtaining money from converts and the illegal practice of medicine are on trial in Marseilles.
Scientology is "a monster that devours" its followers' money and lives, and the main defendant is a "parasite," according to the prosecutor.
The defendants, five of whom are women, are accused of "embezzlement, the illegal practice of medicine and violence with premeditation" between 1987 and 1990. They are said to have charged for services like "Dianetics," described as a "mental science" aimed at "suppressing illness and undesirable sensations."
According to court records, the prosecution charges that the Scientology leaders charged about $192 an hour, with' some courses of treatment in "extreme cases" priced at $2,400.
This is the second trial of Scientology officials in France. The first, in Lyons three years ago, resulted in six persons receiving suspended jail sentences on similar charges. One was sentenced for manslaughter after a convert commit- ted suicide
The Marseilles trial has been linked to scandals after the unexplained destruction of court documents relating to the case came to light in mid-September. It resulted from a lawsuit brought 10 years ago by a doctor, Robert Polguer, who said he had paid about $203,200 for Scientology "services."
The defendants face up to five years in jail and fines of up to $400,000. On Sept. 8, Justice Minister Elisabet Guigou ordered :an inquiry., into: the destruction. of more than three tons of court documents, some of the evi- dente collected for the Scientology case. It was the second time that legal documents relating to Scientology in France have disappeared.
In 1998, other documents concerning the Church of Scientology -- officially considered a cult in France-disappeared from the Paris Palais de Justice. That case, Guigou said, was different. Then, "It was not destruction but disappearance, and that was even more disturbing. Then there was no question of error," she was quoted the foreign press. According to published reports, the prosecutor said the trial would still go ahead as planned, but pointed out that it would be up to the three judge court -to decide on the importance of the miss ing papers once the court convened.
As the trial opened during the fourth week of September, the prosecutor said the documents destroyed' were "subsidiary" and enough evidence remained to present his case.
18- SPOTLIGHT July 19; 1999
The disappearance of Scientology files from the French high court has caused a
. EXCLUSIVE To THE SPOTLIGHT BY PAUL MOTIER
The worst case of ,justice tampering and obstruction in French history is creating a national uproar.
For the first time in French history, an entire room filled with evidence and perhaps a ton of documentary files accumulated over years of police investigations and court proceedings has vanished from the vaults of the French high court.
Since 1989, the Paris-based French attorney general has conducted a criminal investigation against persons allegedly connected to the Church of Scientology under pressure from the public and former sect members who had testified they had been swindled and persecuted by the sect's strong-arm forces.
Numerous proceedings and condemnations resulted but the big trial, which included charges of fraud, extortion, blackmail, corruption, bribery and obstruction of justice, was yet to come. In conjunction with Interpol and other European justice systems, the French court had gathered a massive dossier which was deposited in its Paris vault. The evidence was said to be so overwhelming that it would result in the convictions of practically all the sect leaders not only in France but the rest of Europe.
Scientology spent millions of dollars in newspaper ads, television programs, book fairs and various public relations firms in a vain attempt to turn public opinion against the sect's critics. Much of the money came from the proceeds of the sect's tax exempt status (granted in mysterious circumstances) in the United States.
In Europe the sect is generally considered a money-making business. One particular ad campaign identified the Scientologists' wranglings with the law as similar to the prosecutions of Jews by the Germans during WWII. It then proceeded to accuse the present German government of being Nazi and planning a holocaust of the Scientologists.
The preposterous charges made the sect the laughing stock among many Europeans but it also ignited various Jewish organizations which claimed the Scientologists "misappropriated and desecrated the holocaust memory for their own agendas."
The long-awaited trial was supposed to begin in November 1998. Prosecutor Marie Paule Moracchini had been in charge of gathering evidence which was carefully filed in readiness for the trial. Then practically on the eve of the trial, the court was shocked to its foundation: The entire Scientology file had vanished!
The trial had to be postponed and a massive police hunt began to catch the thieves. All fingers pointed to Scientology agents who had been known on other occasions to be involved in such operations as tampering with court and
SPOTLIGHT July 19, 1999 -19
company records. These suspicions were reinforced when the sect's lawyers immediately moved to dismiss the case, invoking the statute of limitations. To that, the French court ordered a full reconstitution of the missing files within two months.
Officially, the Scientology files known as evidence files D1938 to D1982 started to be painstakingly put back together with the help of computers, duplicates and transcribed testimonies.
Then another surprise: Six voluminous files, never seen by anybody before, suddenly made their way into the court's records vault. Prosecutor Moracchini presented additional evidence that had been placed in another part of the building. Another investigation was ordered to determine whether the files had actually been misplaced or planted by unknown persons.
The Scientology lead attorney Olivier Metzner attempted to use the court's stupefaction to press on his dismissal motions. All have been denied.
While the hunt for the files thieves is being treated as a matter of national security and cooperation with other jurisdictions has been increased, the court has granted additional time to the prosecution to reconstitute their files. A new trial date is expected to be announced very shortly. This time the files are under 24-hour guard.
Thus the sect's expectation that the great file heist would kick in the statute of limitations in its favor did not materialize and the postponement of the trial only promises to be more painful.
While awaiting the Paris trial the sect faces a major criminal trial scheduled for Sept. 20 in Marseilles, France's second largest city. The charges are familiar: grand fraud, racketeering and illegal practice of medicine.
The Marseilles court is not taking any chances to have its files disappear. All files have been duplicated and rest in separate vaults under 24-hour armed guard.
6- SPOTLIGHT June 7, 1999
The strange story of the Church of Scientology's successful effort to bankrupt
its critics at the equally controversial Cult Awareness Network (CAN) were
discussed by Ed Lottick M.D., CAN'S outgoing acting chairman of the board. CAN
is effectively defunct (in terms of its former activities), but the Church of
Scientology owns the operating name.
Lottick was a guest on the May 9 broadcast of The SPOTLIGHT'S weekly call-in talk forum, Radio Free America, with host Tom Valentine. Although Valentine invited Scientologists to call in to respond to Lottick's charges, no calls were received. What follows is an edited transcript of the interview. Valentine's questions are in boldface. Lottick's responses are in regular text.
The concept of defining what constitutes a "cult" is highly controversial and, as a consequence, CAN has been fiercely criticized by many groups and individuals over the years. Briefly, how would you define a "cult"?
There are many definitions of "cult" Mostly, the way it's defined these days is rather sinister: A group that exploits its members, is totalitarian and up to no good.
There are even many critics of CAN who would say that this definition certainly describes Scientology. And it was Scientology that played a part in the events that led to the current state of affairs with CAN.
Starting in the early 1990s, Scientology filed lawsuit after lawsuit against CAN, claiming denial of membership for various members that were trying to get into CAN and take it over. There were a total of 53 lawsuits brought by Scientology attorney Kendrick Moxon or associates on behalf of individual Scientologists who were trying to get into CAN. All of the cases were lost by Scientology or dismissed, but the legal harassment and the malicious prosecution used up CAN'S money and insurance.
Your organization provided counseling to people whose friends and relatives got involved in various cults including, but not limited to, Scientology. But it was Scientology that ultimately bankrupted CAN. Please describe that case.
The case that was brought by Scientology lawyers against CAN involved a young man who was "deprogrammed" [from involvement in a cult) involuntarily.
A member of and contact person for CAN referred deprogrammers to the 18-year-ofd's mother. The young man was then involuntarily deprogrammed by these people, so it was possible to hang the rap on CAN.
So Scientology was able to bring CAN into this lawsuit on that basis alone. The deprogrammer wasn'teven an employee of CAN.
We had no official deprogrammers. We weren't associated with involuntary deprogramming. Involuntary deprogramming took place in America long before CAN ever came about. CAN was predominantly an educational and victim support organization.
CAN, as we once knew it, has effectively been taken over by Scientology. What would the Scientologists want with control of an anti-cult group such as CAN?
The CAN name was bought by Scientology at a bankruptcy sale, and now Scientologists answer the phone that is listed under the name "Cult Awareness Network."
So, if a parent is concerned about their son or daughter being involved with Scientology, and if they hear about a group known as the Cult Awareness Network and call them for help, then it will actually be a Scientologist who answers the phone.
The phones are manned by Scien-
SPOTLIGHT June 7, 1999-7
tologists. In one case I know of, a mother called CAN [while it was under the control of Scientology] and asked questions about another group that her child belonged to, and the [Scientologists at CAN] violated her confidence and called the other group and warned them about the mother's phone call.
So Scientology hit CAN with a lot of lawsuits that led to all of this?
That's right. The lawsuits weakened CAN. Then the lawsuit with Jason Scott case came along and they hung the deprogramming rap on CAN, which had absolutely nothing to do with the involuntary deprogramming of Mr. Scott. However, the jury was very sympathetic and gave the 18year-old Mr. Scott a settlement of close to $2 million against CAN.
So a deprogrammer took Jason Scott out of a cult against his will and CAN got the blame?
CAN got part of the blame and all of the $2 million judgment.
And then Scientology came along and bought the name "Cult Awareness Network" at a bankruptcy sale.
Just recently the Scientologists got control of CAN's records as well. One of the reasons for me to continue with CAN was to defend the records from a takeover by Scientology, and I did this for about two years. The judge said that he didn't want to hear about privacy concerns or about attorney-client privileges. He said that the records must go to Scientology in bulk. Scientology got our membership list, our contributors' list, our letters that we got from people who wrote in and complained about various cults and organizations. Scientology got our legal records, newspaper clipping files and books. So people should be aware that if they call the Cult Awareness Network these days that they will really be getting Scientology on the phone.
This was essentially malicious prosecution of CAN by Scientology?
Yes, and CAN filed a malicious prosecution lawsuit against Scientology for all of the lawsuits that had been filed. Our case went all the way to the Illinois State Supreme Court and they agreed we had a case, but we floundered because of the large cost of pursuing litigation. It was remanded back to the lower court for trial, but we didn't have the money to pursue the case. Here's Candace calling from Washington:
I totally agree with you that the Church of Scientology is very sinister. I've been following it in the news It's also hit me personally. My best friend for more than 10 years got into it. He tried to introduce me to it, but I rejected that. Now we can't talk anymore. Everything is "Scientology" and. if I don't agree, he comes at me really violently almost. It's horrible. Why do they call it a church? It has nothing to do with God whatsoever. I think this whole Scientology thing is very, very scary. They are vicious They will hurt people. I look at Scientology like this: I'm a Christian. I get to open my Bible and to pray to my God for free. It doesn't cost me a dime.
Scientology's body count continues to grow as two major detractors were silenced
in the past two months. The bigger question now appears to be. Who's next on the
Church of Scientology hit list?
EXCLUSIVE TO THE SPOTLIGHT BY CHRISTOPHER J. PETHERICK On March 22, the U.S. Supreme Court rejected an appeal that would have challenged a $1.08 million award brought against the former Cult Awareness Network (CAN) by a Seattle man who was abducted and "deprogrammed" in 1991.
Eighteen-year-old Jason Scott's parents were unhappy with his involvement in the United Pentecostal Church, an organization that they believed was a cult.
Scott's mother contacted Shirley Landa, who was at the time a member of CAN, for information on groups that specialized in a process known as "deprogramming."
Deprogramming often involves the abduction of an individual, where he is held against his will for a period of time and eventually persuaded to leave the cult.
Ms. Landa recommended Rick Ross for Scott's deprogramming. So the family contacted him and worked out an agreement.
A short time later, Ross and two others took the young man from his home in Kirkland, Wash., and tried to convince him to leave the church.
Since Scott was an adult, he sued Ross for his deprogramming. Because Lands was a member of CAN, Scott also sued the organization.
Lawyers for CAN argued that the organization was "not legally accountable," because Scott's mother did not contact the organization, but instead spoke with Lands, an "unpaid volunteer," who put her in touch with Ross.
Dr. Ed Lotick, the former chairman of CAN, says that Kendrick Moxon, a known Scientologist, first represented Scott in the case. Scott later dropped Moxon to be represented by Graham Berry.
A federal jury found CAN liable and awarded Scott nearly $5 million from both the network and the deprogrammers for violating state and federal laws.
Ross was also found guilty and got a $3 million judgment against him. Ross eventually settled with Scott for $5,000.
Due to the protracted litigation and the judgment, CAN was later forced into bankruptcy, dissolved and eventually bought by Scientology, which opened a new Cult Awareness Network in Los Angeles, Calif.
The new so-called "Reformed" CAN is currently operated by the Freedom for Religion Foundation, a Scientology-related entity according to section VIII of the Internal Revenue Service agreement granting Scientology _ and about 100 of their front groups tax-exempt status. The new network sells books written by other Scientology-related entities including the Citizens Commission for Human Rights, which is also listed under VIII of the IRS agreement.
Lottick told The SPOTLIGHT the new Scientology-backed CAN wanted all of the original CAN records, some 270 boxes, stored in a warehouse in Chicago, Ill. He said that the new CAN would disregard the $1.08 million judgment against him if he would give them all of the old records. These included CAN's confidential membership lists, financial records and personal testimonies of former cult members and their parents -- some of whom had been Scientologists.
According to Lottick, representatives from the new CAN picked up all the records from the Chicago warehouse on May 2.
SPOTLIGHT May 24, 1999 -11
Scientology scored a major legal battle, silencing one of its largest
critics, the on-line cult research organization, FACTNet.
EXCLUSIVE TO THE SPOTLIGHT
BY CHRISTOPHER J. PETHERICK
A complicated, protracted legal battle between two Church of Scientology (CoS) front companies, Bridge Publications Inc. (BPI) and Religious Technology Center (RTC), against FACTNet, a nonprofit cult information clearinghouse, came to a screeching halt March 19.
FACTNet co-founders Lawrence Wollersheim and Robert Penny agreed to cease reproducing, distributing and displaying any of Scientology's "trademarked" materials totaling more than 1,000 pages of documents -- or pay CoS $1 million in damages.
Wollersheim predicted what would happen if FACTNet were to lose the case when he talked with a Dallas Observer reporter in 1997: "If they're allowed to win this by having more money than we have, it's going to bum the whole Internet."
The Golden, Colo.-based FACTNet, which is an acronym for Fight Against Coercive Tactics Network, tracks cults and provides news updates on their alleged coercive activities. FACTNet has removed almost all of its background on CoS, pending scrutiny by lawyers on both sides for any copyrighted material. FACTNet can be found on the Internet at: www.factnet.org
But Arnaldo Lerma, a former FACTNet board member and previous target of the cult, says: "Wollersheim was forced to settle because he just ran out of money."
Wollersheim, a former Scientologist who left the cult 20 years ago, has been in numerous state and federal courts over the cult's "scorched earth" policy of litigation. In such litigation, critics are dragged through seemingly endless court battles until they are left financially ruined with staggering legal fees.
In an earlier case, a jury awarded Wollersheim $2.5 million in damages from the cult.
Penny, also a former Scientologyyt, did most of the computer archiving for FACTNet. He was named as one of the defendants in the current court case.
Penny was suffering from multiple sclerosis, which had advanced to the point that his memory was virtually gone and he had become almost completely disabled. Wollersheim insisted that Penny be removed from the case and Judge John L. Kane Jr., who presided, agreed. Kane, however, did not make a ruling in this matter.
The settlement resulted from a lawsuit against FACTNet by Scientologists. The cult charged the Internet news service with copyright infringement after COS lawyers, accompanied by U.S. Marshals, raided the homes of Wollersheim, Penny and Lerma in 1995. COS officials allegedly took FACTNet's computers, computer files, notes and documents, which they claimed contained their protected copyrighted materials.
Attorneys for Scientology's RTC claim the FACTNet materials contained much of"The Advanced Technology" (AT) of Scientology, the writings of Scientology founder L. Ron Hubbard and detailed secrets of the cult's system of promotion that followers pay huge sums of money to find out.
Lerma was sued by CoS after posting more than 60 pages of the cult's AT documents on the Internet.
A judge found Lerma guilty of copyright violations, fining him $2,500. However, the judge limited the ruling, determining that the cult's prime motivation in suing Lerma was to stifle criticism and harass its critics.
When The Washington Post reported on the controversy and included excerpts from the so-called Fishman papers -- similar AT material released by a former high-ranking COS official lawyers for CoS even sued the Post. The cult eventually lost that case when a judge ruled the selections came under the category of"fair use."
Critics of Scientology, many of whom are former members, say much of the material gathered by FACTNet is not even the original writings of Hubbard. Another former Scientologist-turned-critic, Vaughn Young, who was a COS spokesman for many years until he left in 1989, says that many of the copyrights had lapsed on the AT documents. Young says that one of his priorities when he was a member was to try and re-register some of Hubbard's original works.
Young claims to have even written some of the parts of Battlefield Earth, Hubbard's 10-part science fiction series.
According to Lenua, however, the settlement really doesn't matter now because several European governments have unsealed court documents containing the information. "All the information is out there on the Internet anyway now," he said.
12- SPOTLIGHT May 10, 1999
The Church of Scientology's favorite "Holocaust survivor" is back in
the news once again. Mel Mermelstein is now proudly displaying "German soap
made from human fat" at his "Holocaust museum" in Huntington
EXCLUSIVE TO THE SPOTLIGHT BY A. T. HETAN
When Mel Mermelstein needed a tough, hard-driving trial lawyer to help him crush both the Institute for Historical Review (IHR) and Liberty Lobby, the Church of Scientology sent in its biggest legal gun to help Mermelstein: Lawrence Heller.
That's the "big secret" about the Mermelstein case that the conspirators who illicitly seized control of the IHR on Oct. 1, 1993, have had a tough time explaining away, once the secret came out into the open.
Even many of those who had initially supported the conspirators actually began to have second thoughts at this point. They finally began realizing that there was indeed much going on behind-the-scenes.
You see -- there are no "ifs, ands or buts" about it -- Lawrence Heller's presence as Mermelstein's chief counsel proves beyond any question that the Church of Scientology did indeed play a key role in the evisceration of the IHR and in the subsequent campaign against Liberty Lobby that followed.
Heller is not just some high-priced attorney who just happened" by "coincidence" to come in to handle Mermelstein's case against Liberty Lobby and the IHR. Instead, Heller is one of the behind-the-scenes controllers of the Church of Scientology. It's a fact that's been documented in official church-related records and legal filings.
The ADL and the Church of Scientology apparently used the willing Mel Mermelstein (who probably had no idea of the Scientology connection) as a tool in their effort to destroy the revisionist movement and Liberty Lobby.
Now Mermelstein is back in the news again. On April 11, Mermelstein was the subject of a glowing profile "puff piece" in The Orange County Register The article hyped Mermelstein's effort to raise funds (of course!) for a new location for his so-called "Auschwitz Study Foundation Center for Truth."
This operation -- which is Mermelstein's personal "holocaust museum" -- is currently operated out of two portable trailers based on the site of Mermelstein's plant where he produces wood pallets. But now Mermelstein is trying to raise funds to find a permanent location elsewhere -- and he's getting a boost from the Register in doing so. The Register even published the telephone number for Mermelstein's Auschwitz Study Foundation.
What is interesting is that the Register says that Mermelstein's exhibit includes "German soap made from human fat" If this is not an error on the part of the Register, then the Register has made a king-size goof Or it's trying to deceive readers. You see, according to even eminent and widely-promoted historians of "the Holocaust," the Germans -- no matter how bad they were -- never made soap out of human fat -- Jewish or otherwise (see story on page 11).
So the question is this: Did The Orange County Register err in saying that Mermelstein is exhibiting "German soap [made] from human Fat" or did Mermelstein err in saying that the item exhibited was "German soap made from human fat"?
12- SPOTLIGHT May 10, 1999
The behind-the-scenes coup d'etat that ousted the "first family" of
the Church of Scientology laid the groundwork for yet another coup inside the
fractured Institute for Historical Review (MR).
EXCLUSIVE TO THE SPOTLIGHT BY CROWELL BERRY
On March 4, 1996, The SPOTLIGHT published the details regarding the connection between the Church of Scientology and Lawrence Heller, the former attorney for IHR critic Mel Mermelstein (see below). At that time, IHR employee Tom Marcellus and Greg Raven (both Scientologists), Mark Weber and others who had staged the coup at the IHR tried to ridicule the idea that this pointed to any involvement by Scientology in the IHR affair.
However, not only had Heller been associated with the Church of Scientology since at least 1982 -- some nine years prior to his role in Mermelstein's ADL-backed assault on Liberty Lobby and the IHR -- but, in fact, Heller was part of a clique that secretly took command of Scientology upon the "disappearance" of church founder L. Ron Hubbard and which now directs the church's affairs from behind the scenes.
In May 1981, shortly after Hubbard disappeared from public view, Heller's law partner, Sherman Lenske, popped up and claimed to be Hubbard's personal attorney. Less than two months later, Hubbard's wife, Mary Sue, was overthrown from her position as controller, where she held control over the corporate structure of Scientology, as well as over the copyrights of her husband's voluminous writings and various trademarks relating to the conduct of church affairs.
In the months that followed, the entire corporate empire governing Scientology was restructured.
The most significant of the changes took place on May 28, 1983, when Lenske and his inner circle (including Heller) set up the Church of Spiritual Technology (CST) which, ultimately, came into control of all intellectual property that L. Ron Hubbard and Mary Sue Hubbard had ever owned or controlled.
(In a 1992 U.S. Court of Claims ruling, Lenske was named as one of the
SPOTLIGHT May 10, 1999 -13
"special directors" of the CST, along with his brother, Stephen, and Heller.)
One of Lenske's other partners in the founding of the CST was Meade Emory, who served from 1975 to 1977 as assistant' to the commissioner of the Internal Revenue Service.
During that time an IRS employee named Gerald Wolfe was stealing IRS documents and passing them on to Scientology's Guardian Office that was under the control of Mrs. Mary Sue Hubbard.
Then, several years later, when the theft of the documents was unveiled, it played a major part in the overthrow of Mrs. Hubbard, who was prosecuted and held responsible. This led to the ultimate power grab by Emory, Lenske, Heller and the others in the CST inner circle. Former high-ranking American diplomat Stephen Koczak (who had been stationed in Israel) told The SPOTLIGHT in 1994 that, according to his sources, Scientology had been taken over by Israel's Mossad, in conjunction with elements of the CIA.
The hard facts show that Lawrence Heller and his group were those who were the front men who took over Scientology.
Also interesting is that the Washington, D.C. jurist who issued the search warrant for Scientology headquarters, leading to the prosecution of Mrs. Hubbard and her overthrow, was Henry H. Kennedy, Jr.
On April 13, 1999, Kennedy dismissed Liberty Lobby's racketeering suit against the Scientology operatives and others who played a part in the destruction of the IHR and who then used that as a springboard in their effort to destroy Liberty Lobby. Thus, upon Hubbard's disappearance (and reported death in 1986) coupled with Mrs. Hubbard's overthrow following a tenacious Justice Department prosecution, the Church of Scientology fell victim to a coup d'etat orchestrated by outside forces with an interest in gaining control of Scientology, its vast wealth and its mind-control technology.
Then, as is now clear, Scientologists (including Tom Marcellus and Greg Raven and globe-trotting Scientology operative Matthew Peter Balic) were manipulated by their new controllers (including Heller) into playing a part in the subsequent coup at the IHR.
Before Balic's deep-cover Scientology role was exposed, one member of Congress -- whom Balic had been schmoozing -- privately told The SPOTLIGHT that he actually suspected the enigmatic Balic of being a "Mossad" operative.
SPOTLIGHT May 10, 1999 -13 Why Would the
Mossad Want to Steal Hubbard's Church?
Those who doubt The SPOTLIGHTs allegation that Israel's Mossad would have an interest in seizing control of L. Ron Hubbard's Church of Scientology are ignorant of published evidence which demonstrates conclusively that the Mossad has long been interested in mind control and so-called "psychic espionage" with which Scientology is associated. For example, in his authoritative 1977 book, The Israeli Secret Service, Richard Deacon devotes an entire chapter to the subject of "The Strange World of Psychic Espionage." He points out that the Mossad, along with the Soviet KGB, has long been involved in this peculiar realm.
What's more, one longtime Scientologist, Dr. Harold "Hal" Puthoff, of the Stanford Research Institute, has reported that the Mossad used famed Israeli psychic Uri Geller "in field operations." Geller has denied that he was involved in espionage, but a U.S. defense scientist, Eldon Byrd, told Geller's biographer, Jonathan Margolies, that Geller had admitted to Byrd that Gellor had indeed been involved in psychic espionage for the Mossad. Puthoff knows quite a bit about psychic espionage. According to a variety of published sources, Puthoff and several other Scientologists were directly involved (in-depth) in the ClAs own psychic espionage studies; in particular, t he CIA's research into so-called "remote viewing." Remote viewing purports to enable an individual to view what is happening in another location -- a scence that, if perfected, would be a triumph for the world of espionage.
While there are those who doubt such things and others who say such things are "of the deviI," the bottom line is that the Mossad, the CIA and the KGB, among many others, have delved into such research. And there is no question there are numerous Scientology links to such research.
There are many published materials on the subject, but three books in particular are worth noting: Mind Wars by Ronald McRae (St. Martin's Press, 1984); Remote Viewers; The Secret History of America's Psychic Spies by Jim Schnabel (Dell Press 1997); and Psychic Exploration by Edgar Mitchell (GP Putnam's Sons, 1974).
Thus. when the time was ripe; Israel's Mossad would have reason to grab control of a lucrative and ongoing "mind control" operation to use it for its own purposes. There is more to be read about this subject, but this sidebar is a primer for those who fail to understand the big picture.