Presenting Rod Keller's
Alt.religion.scientology Week in Review

Volume 2, Issue 27 - October 19 1997

  Grady Ward

Internet Provider revoked the account of Internet critic Grady Ward this week in response to a complaint from Scientologist William Gertler, who posts to a.r.s as "wgert". Gertler claimed that Grady's posts are abusive and libelous to Helena Kobrin, Scientology lawyer and "the 'Ho of Babel-on".

"I am writing to you with a demand that you take action concerning an abusive net user who is using Tidepool computers to send out abusive and libelous messages which are going onto the Usenet newsgroup alt.religion.scientology.

"The user is Grady Ward who posts from I have attached one example of a posting which Grady made on the 14th of October. Aside from being disgusting and a sad reflection on the man's character, it is libelous and should not be allowed to continue from your computers. He is clearly in violation of the terms of service which is published by your company and he should be kicked off the system.

"I know that he has already been sued once before for copyright infringement and it appears that he is trying to get sued again and drag your service provider down with him."

Zane Thomas and other Internet participants wrote and called Tidepool to protest the decision.

"I called Jim Clearley at What I gather is that the decision was made at least in part by Eric Wright of The e-mail address I got for him is Jim tried to tell me that Grady was canceled for violating Tidepool's TOS, so while we were talking I got it on the screen and started pressing for specifics. Jim mentioned 'off topic posts' more than once, and became rather agitated when I point out to him that 'off topic' and 'ars' are mutually-exclusive concepts. Jim was also under the impression that the co$ was responsible for creating ars and that they had therefore some moral authority to pronounce certain participants 'off topic'.

"At one point Jim tried to broaden the terms of the TOS to cover customer activities which 'cause trouble' for Tidepool. I asked him what he'd do if a hundred or so of us picked on some hapless tidepool user by repeatedly complaining about the content of his posts. Jim didn't seem very comfortable with the logical flaws in his position."

Grady's Internet connection was quickly restored with the help of Deana Holmes, through another Internet Provider.

"I called Jim at tidepool in Arcata. I had had my account terminated because 'an administrator at Supernews' had complain about my apparently 'slanderous' posting to alt.religion.scientology. He said that a '' was the complaining administrator. Jim said that one Eric Wright was the person at Internet Ventures, Inc. who made the decision to terminate. Eric Wright is the administrator both at and for Jim did not disclose to me which term of service I violated, nor did he offer to repay my prepaid 6 month contract, nor did he quote from the supposed communication that I had made which was 'slanderous' (sic). As I was finishing up with Jim, Eric Wright apparently came in the door at and I spoke with him. He said specifically that I was terminated because 'I made the company ( look bad.'

"I responded that 'looking bad' was not a term of service that I had agreed to and that tidepool's TOS supposedly has specific guarantees of no content censorship, but just the general AUP guidelines so as no spam, illegal acts, etc. I also told him that I did not post through tidepool anyway but through Supernews, a Usenet provider located in San Jose. Eric was adamant that what I had allegedly posted was 'slanderous' and 'disgusting'.

"I next spoke with Eric Wright's supervisor, one Carol Serve. She apparently directly reports to Don Jenky, president of Internet Ventures. She was surprised to learn that I only posted through Supernews -- never through tidepool but reiterated that I had 'slandered' someone. Although again she did not mention who nor the content of the alleged 'slander'. I tried to fill her in on the scientology tactic and what I was doing, and, more importantly that I had NOT violated the terms of service that I had signed up under. She responded that this was changing as we spoke and that new terms of service were being uploaded to the tidepool and northcoast web site that made posts of explicit sexual nature against the TOS.

"I told her that it was fine that they changed the TOS to whatever they wanted to but that I had signed up under the older less restrictive TOS and those were in effect when my account was terminated. I asked her to reinstate my account immediately and to write a letter of apology for breach of contract. She hung up on me.

"While through the grace of Deana Holmes and company I now have another ISP, I am saddened that yet another ISP falls victim to the harassment of the criminal cult of scientology and that their intimidation can even lead to breaches of contract. While I am not a litigious sort of person, it may require the intervention of the court to make sure that my situation with tidepool is clarified and that a clear message is sent to ISPs that they ought to obey their contract responsibilities, as of course each customer to the ISP ought to."

"I may have to sue Internet Ventures, Inc.,, Eric Wright, Carol Serve, et al. to protect my reputation and to remedy their breach of contract with me. Suing will also permit me to obtain all documents the scientologists sent to tidepool, all published libels and permit me to examine the tidepool staff under oath to prove that they changed the terms and conditions after my account was terminated in order to pretend no breach of contract occurred.

"I do need some money: $80 file a complaint in municipal court $100-150 each to serve summons on the above parties $200 for an attorney to look over my complaint to make sure it passes muster."


  Lisa McPherson

Mark Dallara transcribed a news story from Tampa TV station Channel 28 on the looting of Lisa McPherson's bank accounts following her death.

"[T]he deposition of Lisa McPherson's roommate lasted nearly an hour, but it was not so much what she said as what she refused to say that raises some questions.

"VOICE: Why did you move out?

"CRUZ: Well, first of all, the apartment wasn't mine, it was under Lisa's name. Um, her, it was her lease, she was dead, and I didn't, y'know, I wasn't going to stay there by myself.

"WITT: Gloria Cruz lived with Lisa McPherson for three months. McPherson is the Scientologist who died in the care of other Scientologists while staying in the Ft. Harrison Hotel. And now the McPherson family is suing the church in a wrongful death lawsuit. In her deposition, Gloria Cruz says she and McPherson were not close friends. And she refused to answer five questions concerning McPherson's checking account.

"VOICE (sounds like Ken Dandar): Did you ever write any checks out of Lisa McPherson's checking account?

"CRUZ: On the advice of counsel, and relying on my fifth amendment privilege against self-incrimination, I respectfully decline to answer.

"DANDAR: There are checks written to Gloria Cruz, while Lisa McPherson is in isolation near death. And there are checks written to Lisa McPherson and SIGNED by Lisa McPherson after she's dead.

"WITT: 28 Investigates has learned, that on the day before Lisa died, while she was in the Ft. Harrison Hotel, somehow, a deposit of $1600 was made into Lisa's account with Lisa's signature. Lisa died December 5. But on the day after she died, Lisa's boyfriend, Kurt Paine, wrote a check on Lisa's account to Gloria Cruz for $2500. After Lisa had been dead 8 days, another deposit was made to her account, again bearing her name. That same day, Gloria Cruz wrote a check to Lisa for $2500, but again, Lisa had been dead for 8 days, and Gloria knew it. Then, 10 days after Lisa's death, Kurt Paine signed another check to another Scientologist, for more than $2000.

"VOICE: Do know if Kurt Paine ever wrote any checks out of Lisa McPherson's checking account?

"CRUZ: On the advice of counsel, and relying on my fifth amendment privilege against self-incrimination, I respectfully decline to answer.

"WITT: The finances are significant in this case because Lisa was making well over $100,000 a year, working for a Scientology-owned company. And when her family took over her account, there was only a couple hundred dollars left in that account. Cruz is a Scientologist, and also testified that Kurt Paine is a member of the Church of Scientology as well.

"ANCHOR: Well, an attorney for the Church of Scientology said this afternoon this is not a church matter, but rather a personal matter between Lisa McPherson and her roommate Gloria Cruz."

Lisa's Memorial Page

  Bob Minton

Bob Minton received threats from Scientology this week, attempting to pressure him to stop substantial contributions to Scientology critics and anti-cult organizations.

"I got another call from one of the osa pod people on Tuesday night, the ever engaging Mary Frances (MF). She was out of the yes sir no sir mode of just a few nights ago and into pure harassment and intimidation. She indicated that $cientology was prepared to start attacking me on or in a number of areas unless I stopped giving financial support to their enemies. The areas of possible attack conveyed to me were: Family, Children, Ex-wife, Ex-business partners, State and Federal taxes, Mental Health, Drugs, Paying picketers.

"MF informed me that the people I was listening to were 'lunatics' and only another lunatic would pay any attention to them. 'Surely you can see that nobody else is doing what you are doing--doesn't that say something to you?' squealed MF. Then she wants to know point blank 'Are you going to stop giving money to these people or not?' You figure it out osa $cumbag! Please rest assured that I am not shuddering into silence. My check writing hand still works.

"And, finally osa continues to bumble along: e.g., the osa goon standing in front of my neighbors house on Wednesday morning made a quick retreat to his beat-up car a few steps away on the corner of West Cedar St. and Pinckney St. when he saw me exit my house, look his way and walk towards him. He then sped the 50ft down Pinckney and banged a right on Charles St. at Starbucks, where I was heading for a coffee. Problem was for this guy was that Charles St. is one way in the opposite direction. At rush hour in the morning it's a bit busy -:). The horns and cars made the next 150ft a bit of a spectacle as he then banged a left on Revere St. going to Storrow Drive. One more problem--he was again going the wrong way."


  Kirstie Alley

Star Magazine reports that Kirstie Alley will marry in a Scientologist-studded ceremony.

"Funny lady Kirstie Alley plans to ring in the New Year with a $1 million wedding to lover James Wilder! The 'Veronica's Closet' star wants to tie the knot in early January, as soon as her divorce from Parker Stevenson is final. She and James will exchange vows at the Scientology headquarters in Clearwater, Fla. Kirstie's already a devout follower, but James is a newcomer and has been taking classes at the group's Hollywood compound. Kirstie's chartering jets to fly guests in, and is paying for first-class accommodations. Topping the guest list are fellow Scientologists John Travolta--who will give a speech and walk Kirstie down the aisle--and Lisa Marie Presley, Tom Cruise and Nicole Kidman. She's also shopping for a $3 million waterfront mansion close to the Clearwater Scientology center."

Message-ID: 01bcd9b5$eca251e0$e032a5ce@packard-bell

  Andreas Heldal-Lund

Operation Clambake web site creator Andreas Heldal-Lund reported a possible Scientology operation on him this week.

"Today, October 14th at 19:50, a guy rings my doorbell. When I open the door he asks if I have a friend called Kristian. I tell him he must have come to the wrong place. He says that was strange because he was driven here earlier and told to come to this apartment and deliver 5 grams of 'stuff'. I made it very clear to this guy that he definitely had come to the wrong place and that I will call the police if he ever comes here again. Then I slammed the door in his face.

"I've just called the local police department and promised them to send a written report tomorrow."


  Deutsche Bank

Newsday carried an article this week on the Scientologist who is suing Deutsche Bank for religious discrimination.

"A Deutsche Bank spokesman in Frankfurt said the bank will not hire people or open accounts for people it knows to be Scientologists. 'As a rule, it is our policy not to do any business with people we know to have a connection with Scientology,' bank spokesman Klaus Thoma said. He said he isn't aware of any other group that is similarly excluded by the bank. Deutsche Bank's stance echoes that of the German government, which does not recognize Scientology as a religion, rather as a potentially dangerous sect.

"'Our history teaches us to be especially alert,' German Foreign Minister and Vice Chancellor Klaus Kinkel said in a statement last month. 'There are many signs that the Scientology organization persecutes its members and their associates with quasi-totalitarian methods.' The controversy has boosted Scientology's number in Germany, said Leisa Goodman, human rights director for the Church of Scientology International."

  Berlin Protest

Tilman Hausherr reports that plans for Scientology's march in Berlin are changing as venues withdraw from the event.

"The Kempinski Hotel in Berlin has cancelled the reservations of the scientology 'conference for religious freedom' - they were not told that it was a scientology event. As reasons they mentioned the security of the guests and the reputation of the hotel.

"Scientology has also changed the route for their march: now they will come from the Deutschlandhalle to the Brandenburg gate, after they screwed up the talks with the Deutschlandhalle. According to a newspaper, the talks were with the 'First African National Episcopal Church'.

"[T]hey won't be able to get into a warm concert hall. Instead they will have to listen to hours of boring speeches of Heber 'Nobody expects the spanish inquisition' Jentzsch, and then an open-air concert of Corean music.

"A clam spokeswoman (the same who lied to the Kempinski Hotel when she said that the conference is not related to scientology) claimed that 6.500 people had already confirmed their appearance at the demo, and that she expects 30,000."

Messages from Scientology's TNX list describe the preparations underway.

"This Saturday (18 October) night there is a VERY important meeting in the ballroom at Flag. This is the final briefing before the crusade for all Scientologists and is from the senior IAS terminals at Flag. I have been given some of the data that will be gone over and can assure you that you will want to be there. There is going to be some very hot data given how the atrocities occurring right now in Germany are effecting every one of us.

"For any Jewish Scientologists the term 'Never Again' should strike a cord. Well, that is the title of this event. Jewish Scientologists and non Jewish Scientologists as well are all welcome. There is obviously no charge and as there will be authentic Israeli / Jewish food provided it is important to confirm your attendance."

"Please help support the Berlin Crusade by buying some Berlin Crusade t-shirts. On the front there is a picture of a dove flying through a brick wall. Below the picture is written, Oct. 27 & 28 Berlin Germany, BREAKING THE WALL OF INTOLERANCE. On the back it says 'I'M TAKING A STAND FOR RELIGIOUS FREEDOM IN GERMANY', BERLIN GERMANY OCT. 27 & 28. We have to win the fight in Germany. When you make your checks payable to Steve Upike a 100% of all proceeds will go to the Crusade Org."

Message-ID: 6239v1$

  Helen Burke

The Bee carried an article on Helen Burke, who was shot by Scientologist Jairus Godeka at the Portland, Oregon org in September, 1996.

"Four months pregnant at the time, Burke was the first and most seriously injured by Godeka's rampage. Steve Crandell, the church's executive director, took one of Godeka's gunshots in the stomach. Burke's baby, Bridget, was born safely on Feb. 14. Bridget is her third child, joining siblings Siobhan, 12, and Tim, 10.

"Originally from Australia, Burke has worked for the Church of Scientology for 14 years. In her third year as a minister, she now provides audiences a personal testimonial to the workings of her church. Burke credits her church, and family, for helping her through the emotional healing process. She has physical therapy three times a week in order to build her upper body strength, which is necessary to manage her wheelchair.

"'On a mental and emotional level, I'm no worse now than I was a year ago, because of the Dianetics counseling procedure. It gives you the ability to let go of all your negative emotions and focus on a positive future.' Burke returned to her job earlier this year. She holds free workshops to explain L. Ron Hubbard's Dianetics methods used successfully to counsel herself and her family. 'The incident has strengthened our resolve to continue helping others through the Church of Scientology practices,' says Burke.

"Burke holds no grudge against her assailant. 'I feel very sorry for him and his mental state that he would have felt so dreadful. But I've never hated him, even from the date of the incident.'"

The Bee: Helen Burke A Year Later
Message-ID: 623qcc$r2c$

  New CAN

Martin Ottmann reported that the directors of the new CAN were announced in Scientology's Impact magazine.

"Iz Chait (President), Jean Hornnes (Vice-President), Dr. George Robertson, Nancy O'Meara, Leisa Lewinson and Mark Lurie. Iz Chait is a New OT VIII, Patron Meritorious of the IAS, WISE-member and has donated $500,000 for the Tech Preservations Project. In an earlier Impact magazine it was told he had done 'projects for the 'Office of Special Affairs''. He owns and runs a Asian Arts-shop in Los Angeles.

"Jean Hornnes is a New OT VIII, a Class IV-Auditor, on the Honor Roll of the IAS and a 'Power FSM'. She was awarded with the 'OT Achievement Award' on the Freewinds in June this year."

Gerry Armstrong identified another member as OSA.

"Nancy O'Meara's name appears on [a] Scientology press release sent by the cult to at least the Marin Independent Journal (California) in January, 1995."



Tilman Hausherr reported that the Carolina org's web page has been removed, possibly due to the location being disbanded.

"[Their] web page is gone. So I guess the Dianetics center in the Carolinas must have been closed."

  Dennis Erlich

Keith Henson reported that Dennis Erlich's copyright violations case has been put on hold by Judge Whyte.

"Yesterday while delivering a motion to Hogan and picking up a pre trial statement (which I will scan and post) Tom told me that Judge Whyte had vacated all court dates for the RTC vs Erlich case, and that no new dates were set. I guess the opposing arguments by both sides for summary judgment just got too much for him."


  Now Magazine

Now Magazine, a free Toronto weekly, carried an article on Scientology and a letter to the editor from Scientologist Al Buttnor in the past two weeks.

"Getting a bead on where the Church of Scientology is coming from can sometimes prove a daunting task. Take, for example, a suit the church's U.S. based offices in Los Angeles has been pursuing for copyright infringement against FACTNet International, a self-described 'cult awareness' network run by Lawrence Wollersheim out of Boulder, Colorado. Church spokesman Karen Pow [sic] says the suit revolves around Wollersheim's posting copyrighted material - namely, that already published by Scientology founder L. Ron Hubbard in his books - on FACTNet's Web site without permission.

"Pow says the suit is not about money - she says that the effect on the sale of Hubbard's books is negligible - but about maintaining what she calls the 'integrity' of the Internet.

"Wollersheim has its own theory. He says it's about snuffing out criticism of the church. He says the stories of a number of former members have been posted on FACTNet's site. 'We wanted to tell the world' he says."

"Many, if not all, of Jewish background would be enraged if Ernst Zundel or someone of that ilk published the Torah or other Jewish works on their Web site. And, if Jewish organizations proceeded with legal actions because the works were copyrighted, most people, Jew and Gentile alike, would applaud. Such is the case between Lawrence Wollersheim, his group FACTNet, and the Church of Scientology. While individuals such as Wollersheim and Zundel have the right to freely criticize, they do not have the right to appropriate the intellectual property of others.

"Reverend Al Buttnor
Church of Scientology of Toronto"


  Freedom Magazine

Garry Scarff summarized an article in Freedom Magazine concerning the St. Petersburg Times.

"'Times staffers have publicly and privately chastised the newspaper for it's bias and lack of opportunities for minorities.' It also reports on the 'Incestuous relationship between the media and bigoted police leadership' referring to Steve Fishman has a major 'mouthpiece' for the Times.

"'There is the unlikely & unhealthy matter of the connection between Clearwater & Germany. As part of this, a film crew from a government-owned television station was dispatched to the United States to 'document' and 'create' falsehoods that would continue the German people's misunderstanding of the Scientology religion. Arriving in Clearwater last February, they immediately hooked up with a notorious liar to provide them with 'facts'. Indeed, the source they chose was the same man who helped in fund raising efforts for a now-defunct anti-religious hate group by claiming to have lost his wife, his unborn child and father at the hands of a Christian group - yet he has never been married, never had a child (unborn or otherwise) and his father still lives in Florida.

"'The Clearwater Police's senior official's were well aware of his background as a pathological liar because they had been earlier given documented evidence of his record by Scientology officials. Yet, they did what they could to make his and the television crew's agenda successful. In fact, on the first day of the German team's filming in Clearwater, they had a long meeting with Clearwater PD officials.'"

Message-ID: 01bcdc3d$61611780$24e0a1cd@scaarf


Tilman Hausherr reported that a German company has warned its customers about Scientology in its newsletter.

"The German insurance broker 'MLP' wrote about scientology in its quarterly newsletter, which is printed 160,000 times. This is bad news for scientology, because MLP serves the 'high end' of the market, i.e. people in academic professions, who earn a lot of money, which won't get to scientology. The article has 3 pages and starts with the Xenu story. Sadly no internet URL was mentioned."



Xinhua News reported that Germany has reversed its decision to use intelligence services in monitoring Scientology.

"The decision was made by Chancellor Helmut Kohl's intelligence services coordinator, Bernd Schmidbauer, German press agency DPA quoted a government source as saying. Bonn was last month considering putting Scientologists abroad under the surveillance of the country's overseas intelligence service. German Foreign Minister Klaus Kinkel last month described Scientology as a 'quasi-totalitarian' organization, which 'is not a religion or world outlook,' in refuting the accusation by a U.S. senator that Scientology was being persecuted in Germany."

Message-ID: 62ba80$

  IAS Celebration

Details of the International Association of Scientologists Anniversary celebration were posted to America Online this week.

"The International Association of Scientologists Anniversary is held at a different host city each year, members of the IAS gather to commemorate the founding of the IAS and to rededicate themselves to its aims. The annual IAS freedom awards are presented. This event coincides with the annual convention of IAS delegates. This year it's at the famous Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles, Saturday, November 1st."

Message-ID: 621711$


Corriere della Sera carried an article this week that the Italian Supreme Court has reversed a lower court conviction of 33 Scientologists.

"'It's a great win' - told Fabio Amilcarelli of Scientology - 'to the religion, to Scientology and to any other religion, even minor, in Italy'. In this way 'the religious freedom constitutionally guaranteed has been respected' and 'for the second time, the Supreme Court made justice'.

"The Supreme Court cancelled the sentence of the Milan Appeal Court which had denied the religious nature of Scientology in 1996, and convicted 33 officers of the organization for criminal association. The matter of the religious nature regarding Scientology was urged by The Supreme Court itself, which had cancelled and deferred a previous sentence of the Milan Appeal Court in 1995, claiming that the verification of Scientology nature had been seen as 'unnecessary'."

From an article in La Republica:

"There will be a new trial for the 33 adherents of the Church of Scientology. The sixth criminal section of the Supreme Court has in fact cancelled and deferred the sentence delivered against the adepts by the Milan Appeal Court. After about two hours of chambers the judges of the Supreme Court decided to cancel the sentence and deferred it to another section of the Appeal Court in Milan. It deals particularly with the verdict with which, among other things, the religious nature of the organization was denied.

"The pg Oscar Pedrangolo who asked for the confirm of the convictions, in his bill of indictment did try to keep aloof from the religious matter: 'The Supreme Court isn't surely the proper seat to ascertain whether Scientology is a religion or a business. The judges must instead ascertain if the crimes committed by some of their adepts are private initiatives or are the results of a dictate coming from the organization.'"


  Keith Henson

Keith Henson was the subject of Scientology private investigators again this week.

"A delegation of angry neighbors came to call this evening my DA pack in hand. Were they upset at me? Nope, they were pissed at Gene Ingram and his blond woman shadow (from the description it likely was Darlene) who were in the area early afternoon."


  Odhran Fortune

Notice was posted this week that an event in Dublin will focus on Scientology and Odhran Fortune, whose family continues their efforts to get him out of the cult.

"There will be a Debate in University College Dublin on Friday the 17 th. The debate is on $cientology and is being hosted by the literary society at 7:30. All welcome. There will be representatives from the Fortune Family, at which they will update people on the case so far."


  Scientology Textbooks

The Sacramento Bee published an article on Scientology textbooks in California schools.

"While some in the education community have raised concerns about the religious group's bid for entree into public schools, approval of the study skills materials has been stymied twice by a wholly separate issue -- their representation of groups such as people with disabilities and people of color. 'The majority of learning does come from textbooks, so we want to be able to help students identify with the characters they're seeing,' said Rovina Salinas, an educator who examined the books for the state agency. 'What we (initially) found in all five texts is that they really lacked the representation ... we require in California.'

"While a citizens' board -- the Legal Compliance Review Panel -- has deemed 'Learning to Learn' and the other books acceptable under laws prohibiting the promotion of any religious practice, so far the panel has rejected them for failing to aptly depict people with disabilities, and people of color.

"After an initial review, Bridge Publishing modified some of the books' sketches, but disabled people still aren't properly represented, said Salinas, who works for the Contra Costa County Office of Education and chairs the county's Legal Compliance Review Panel. Disabled children are shown alone instead of mixing with others. Canes, more representative of the aging process than of disabilities, are also depicted, she said.

"The materials will be revised and presented again later this fall, said Ian Lyons of Applied Scholastics, the Church of Scientology's nonprofit wing that licenses the use of Hubbard's learning methods.

"The controversy amplified concerns by the American Civil Liberties Union and some former Scientologists that the classroom materials may also serve as a proselytizing hook for the organization. Scientology isn't mentioned in the Hubbard books or the 'about the author' section, which highlights Hubbard's career as a science fiction writer and an explorer of 'the human condition.' However, certain 'study technology' terms are also key Scientology concepts found in his other works.

"'Scientology practitioners ... may utilize these textbooks as a vehicle for inculcating their students into at least the terminology of Scientology and, perhaps, more,' said Doug Merill, an attorney and board member of the Southern California ACLU. 'When a religion itself tells me that its scripture is everything that L. Ron Hubbard has written, then two plus two to me equals four,' he said. 'It appears that the textbooks are Scientology scripture as defined by Scientologists.'"

The Sacramento Bee: Hubbard texts in classrooms? State finds no religion problem

  Swedish NOTS

The Swedish government this week bowed to pressure from the United States, and some agencies have agreed to keep copies of the NOTS secret. The materials appear to be still available from other agencies of the Swedish government. From NTB, the Norwegian press service:

"The Swedish government has agreed to keep secret a book about the controversial Church of Scientology following pressure from the USA. Go'ran Schrader, a lawyer in the Swedish Justice Department, said Saturday that the decision was made 'in order to protect our international character.'

"'This is very good. This is just what we had expected.' said Tarja Vulto, spokeswoman for the Church of Scientology in Sweden. The controversy began last year when a textbook was sent to the Swedish parliament by Zenon Panoussis. Secret Scientology publications have previously been released on the Internet.

"The American trade attache threatened to bring the case before the World Trade Organization."

From The Associated Press:

"Under pressure from the United States, Sweden has agreed to stop allowing public access to a Scientology publication that the controversial church guards closely. The decision comes in a case that placed Sweden's law on open public records in conflict with international copyright regulations and prompted complaints from U.S. Trade Representative Charlene Barshefsky and Rep. Sonny Bono, R-Calif. Goeran Schaeder, legal affairs chief at the Swedish Justice Department, said Saturday that the decision was made 'to protect our international contacts.'

"It is not clear how the person who sent the manual, Zenon Panoussis, obtained it. But dissident church members have made secret publications available elsewhere and have posted them on the Internet. The church filed suit against Panoussis, claiming the submission violated its copyright. Barshefsky cited the copyright issue as one of two trade concerns with Sweden and said the matter could be taken before the World Trade Organization.

"Last month, Bono wrote to Justice Minister Laila Freivalds and asked her to order a stop to the release of material copyrighted in the United States.

"Hubbard contended that mankind's trouble began when Xenu, leader of an intergalactic federation 75 million years ago, attempted to solve a population problem on federation planets. He transported surplus populations to Earth, where they were chained to volcanoes and blown up with hydrogen bombs."


A.r.s. Week in Review is put together by Rod Keller © This collection is organised for WWW by Andreas Heldal-Lund. Only edits done by me is replacing word encapsuled in * or _ with bold and underscore, and made links into HTML.

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