Bruce Pettycrew posted his filing to the court in Arizona, asking that Scientology's attempt to prevent his pickets of the Mesa org be denied. The judge in the case will be the Hon. Brian Hauser.
"Respondent submits this Memorandum of the applicable law and asks this Court to dismiss the Petition with prejudice, and for any attorney fees incurred in the response and hearing for this unjustified action.
"The definition of harassment as defined by A.R.S. is 'a series of acts over any period of time that is directed at a specific person and that would cause a reasonable person to be seriously alarmed, annoyed or harassed and the conduct in fact seriously alarms, annoys or harasses the person and serves no legitimate purpose.' Bruce Pettycrew has a legitimate purpose in picketing the Church of Scientology. Respondent is trying to warn the public about the dangers involved in joining the 'Church.' Respondent is also exercising his right of freedom of speech, in a public forum, in a place where his message will have the most effect.
"In their Hearing Memorandum, the 'Church' claims that 'fighting words' are not protected by the First Amendment, pursuant to Chaplinsky v. New Hampshire. While it is true that the doctrine of fighting words has not been completely overturned, the Chaplinsky ruling has been narrowed considerably, leading many legal scholars to call for its demise or recognition that it has become synonymous with the standard cited in Brandenburg v. Ohio the standard known as the 'clear and present danger' test.
"The fighting words doctrine was even further modified to require that the words would inspire immediate physical retaliation by the listener. These cases included Cohen and Gooding v. Wilson, which held a Georgia statute unconstitutional because it did not limit the offense to words having 'a direct tendency to cause acts of violence by the person to whom, individually, the remark is addressed. In this case, there was no face-to-face communication between Bruce Pettycrew and the 'Church,' and Mr. Pettycrew's picketing has been on a general level, not a personal attack. Mr. Pettycrew's signs and shirts refer to Scientology itself, not to any particular individual in the 'Church.' Mr. Pettycrew's actions also do not meet the standard espoused in Gooding, where it was required that the words result in a direct tendency to cause violence by the receiver. Mr. Pettycrew has picketed the 'Church' on at least 12 occasions according to the 'Church,' and not once has any violence occurred by either party. Therefore, pursuant to Chaplinsky, Cohen, Hess and Gooding, Bruce Pettycrew's actions cannot be enjoined based on the 'fighting words' doctrine.
"In two recent Supreme Court cases, even with egregious conduct by the picketers, which did not occur in this case, the Court upheld only 36 foot and 15 foot injunctions. Yet here, the 'Church' is asking for a 500 yard injunction, even though the police have never been called out, even though no traffic has ever been interfered with, and even though members have conversed with Mr. Pettycrew for nearly an hour without any breach of the peace. The 'Church' simply does not like what Mr. Pettycrew says about their beliefs. This is not an issue that should be before this court, and the matter should be denied with prejudice, and Mr. Pettycrew should have any attorney fees awarded him for having to respond to this action."
Keith Henson provided an update on the Lisa McPherson civil case against Scientology.
"[T]he CoS tried to argue that they have the right to kill their members because of the First Amendment. The judge was not one bit sympathetic to this argument. Ken did have to withdraw Dr. Minkoff as a defendant for a while because Florida requires 90 notice to physicians before you can add them to a malpractice suit. Ken argued that Minkoff's contributions were not medical, but a criminal attempt to cover up at least negligent homicide, but the judge said to do it by the books and consider Minkoff a doctor, for now and that Ken should put him back in after the 90 days are up."
|Mary and Fred|
A Scientology couple reported that Scientology has fired the husband from his job at a WISE company.
"My husband was fired yesterday from his job of 17 years because it was 'discovered' by OSA he has recieved Freezone auditing. We have written and taped proof that he and one other employee were fired because of their disagreemnet with COS. We have an attorney but want another one that has experience with COS tactics. Can anyone recommend one in the Portand, Oregon area?"
"Fred worked for a business that is privately owned, but his (now) ex-partner is a Scio. Technically Fred still owns part of the business as his partner has failed to pay him off within the time specified in their original buyout contract.
"About 3 days before Fred was fired, he was visited at his office in the company by Portland Director of Special Affairs (OSA) Gwen Mayfield Barnard. In the taped interview with her, she tells Fred that he needs to give up the name of the person he is connected to in the Freezone and to come back into the fold. It is implied that he will not be able to maintain his position at the business if this does not occur. Plus a few other tapes we have of some interesting comments made by the corporate officer that replaced Fred. He says about 4 times during the meeting where Fred is fired that 'Yes, you ARE being fired because of the church!'"
Excerpts from articles concerning Scientology and Germany, first from Sueddeutsche Zeitung, translated by Joe Cisar.
"How can businesses protect themselves against Scientology? The magazine 'Der Betrieb' dedicates itself to this question in it's December edition. Jobst-Hubertus Bauer, an attorney specializing in labor law, together with two colleagues, gives an indication of how businesses which carry a responsibility for their own employees in accordance with labor laws are able to withstand the members of the Scientology Organisations, and how they are able to impede the enlistment of such workers.
"The religious and philosophical teachings serve much more as a pretext for the pursuit of commercial goals. But what has not been determined is to what length employers may ask about Scientology membership in their recruitment efforts. Conclusive criteria for the admissibility of such a question is the relevance of the applicant's suitability for the workplace.
"Questions concerning Scientology membership are permitted if the employment is of a nature which involves a position of trust, by 'normal', not religious or politically directed. labor standards. This involves supervisors, deputies and other leading employees, as well as secretaries or bookkeepers. 'Also workers who possess primary oversight over subordinate positions who are able to cull sensitive data from their area', warns Bauer.
"[T]he termination of a worker's employment only because of his membership in Scientology is permissible only when it relates to a special position of trust. This was determined by the Berlin District Labor Court which effected the immediate dismissal of a psychologist who had children under her care. Otherwise the simple fact of membership is not a grounds for dismissal, since it does not affect the suitability of an employee for his workplace. Whoever recruits for Scientology in the workplace or distributes its literature can be dismissed after one warning."
From Stuttgart News:
"According to the German Police Association (DPolG), officers and employees of the police should, in the future, sign a declaration of possible Scientology membership [/non-membership]. This was decided at a board meeting in Buehl. According to the interpretation of the DPolG the scientology idealogy is in opposition to district law. Radicals against democracy have no place on the police force, said District Chief Dieter Berberich. This counts not only for Scientology, but also for left and right extremist groups and parties. Scientologists can only be uncovered through [use of] a written declaration, according to the Board's decision."
From CNN Interactive World News:
"In Bonn, Albright tried to downplay U.S. differences with Germany over its viewpoints on Scientology. Albright said she thought the matter could be handled amicably, and criticized Scientologists for accusing Germany of treating them the way Nazis treated Jews.
"'I must say that any discussion which draws comparisons between what happened under the Nazis and what is happening now is historically inaccurate and totally distasteful,' she said at a news conference with German Foreign Minister Klaus Kinkel. According to other officials, Kinkel raised the issue with Albright, and it was discussed only briefly.
"Kinkel told reporters that Scientologists are not persecuted in Germany. He said under German law Scientology is considered a profit-making organization rather than a religion. In the United States, Scientology is considered a religion and is therefore tax-exempt. Kinkel said it is 'not an issue that plays a decisive part in bilateral relations.'"
Arnie Lerma posted a letter to Kendrick Moxon this week, questioning Moxon's ability to subpoena him in Grady Ward's bankrutpcy case.
"I have had an opportunity to review the bankruptcy court's docket in this matter and the related bankruptcy proceeding, In re: Grady Ward and Felicity Wasser. The docket confirms what I had previously heard second-hand; a default was entered in the Adversary Proceeding on January 27, 1998. This was after the subpoena was sent. I had therefore expected to receive word from you that the deposition was being cancelled.
"I realize that the default is currently being contested by the debtors, but there is presently no case for me to be compelled to testify in. It is my current intention not to appear on February 27, 1998 for a deposition, as the case in which the deposition was requested is over. Please let me know if you wish to pursue this deposition and, if so, the basis for compelling me to testify."
Also in the bankruptcy case, Grady Ward posted his demand for discovery to Scientology lawyers.
"Identify all individuals who monitor or assist monitoring the Internet for RTC from January 1995 to the present.
"Identify all private investigators employed by RTC or attorneys who have investigated Grady Ward, Felicity Wasser, Robert S. Minton, or each and every of the individuals listed in each and every of the 'Documents Requested' paragraphs of the various Creditor's Notices of Deposition in this action from January 1995 to the present, with particularity, identify the investigator and his associates and seniors who obtained information from Humboldt Bank in Arcata, California on or around September 12, 1996 concerning Felicity Wasser's bank balances.
"All documents relating to Creditor's litigation or contact by RTC with Grady Ward, Felicity Wasser, Robert S. Minton, H. Keith Henson, Dennis Erlich, Lawrence Wollersheim, Arnaldo Lerma, Zenon Panoussis, Andreas Heldal-Lund, Johan Wevers, David Touretzky, Gregg Haglund, Martin Ottmann, Deana Holmes, Rod Keller, Mark Dallara, Ray Randolph, Jeff Jacobsen, F.A.C.T.Net, Inc. or any other person or entity regarding unlawful distribution and the investigation thereof of the Advanced Technology on the Internet since January 1995 to the present;
"All documents relating to any private investigation of any person or entity referred to above; All records relating to payment to private investigators, whether directly or though Creditor attorneys, who have investigated any party listed above; All documents relating to postings or e-mail on the Internet or any other records, whether kept in magnetic or any other form, of all persons referred to above;
"All documents concerning the funding of litigation by the Creditor of any other person or entity; All documents concerning the copyright registration certificates of each and every portion of the Advanced Technology."
A.r.s participants Gregg Hagglund and Scott McClare reported receiving phone calls from Scientology this week. First from Gregg:
"Late yesterday (Feb. 17) I received a short phone call. 'We know your secrets. How would you like to see thme posted on the Internet?' I answered: 'Go ahead.' The caller (male) hung up. So, I invite OSA to post my secrets."
"I received a long-distance phone call from an individual identifying himself as Mr. David Lee, a private investigator, who wished to ask me a few questions. When I asked who he represented, he said he was working on his own, although he later said he had been employed by the Church of Scientology in the past.
"The supposed Mr. Lee proceeded to ask me about my postings to a.r.s. I replied that to my knowledge I had not participated in the specific discussions he was asking about, since I had no opinion about the subject matter. Next, the alleged Mr. Lee asked me about the content of my Web page and what would prompt me to publish it. I explained to him that I was motivated by moral indignation, particularly over the following legal judgment, which I encouraged him to obtain and read.
"Mr. Lee: If indeed you are who you say you are, may I humbly request that the next time you attempt to investigate me, you please give me a few days' notice? I have a number of friends who can't believe a Church would employ private investigators to question its critics. It would be an unprecedented social event for my own church group, to say the least."
The Mirror published an article on the activities of Scientology front group Criminon in Ireland.
"A controversial cult is backing an Irish religious sect's bid to sign up dangerous criminals. The infamous Church of Scientology is helping to target murderers and rapists in top security jails, including Arbour Hill and the Currugh, which hold dangerous sex offenders. Criminon Ireland, run by self-confessed German-born Scientologist Katrin Ruckert, is offering inmates courses based on the teachings of the late L. Ron Hubbard, founder of the Scientologists.
"The group claims to be a charity but is not registered as one. It sifts through newspaper reports of rapes and murders to find names of prisoners to contact. The letters to prisoners invite them to join courses based on the L. Ron Hubbard book The Way To Happiness. A jail insider in one of the tightest security prisons in the country said prisoners are receiving the letters only a week after they are put behind bars
"He said: 'This is a very trying time for anyone in prison even if they have served time before. They are grasping at anything and the Scientologists are aware of this. They know it is a good time to approach a person who would be very vulnerable to what they are offering.'"
Judge Ronald Whyte denied Keith Henson's request for a jury trial to determine if his copyright infringement was "wilful".
"The court finds that defendant is not entitled to a jury trial since the only remaining issues in this case are whether defendant's infringement was wilful and the amount of statutory damages that should be awarded.
"Following the Ninth Circuit's reasoning, the better view appears to be that a defendant is not entitled to ajury trial on the issue of statutory damages. The court agrees with persuasive authority that if this view is correct, then 'it would seem to further follow that the determination of whether the defendant acted 'willfully,' insofar as this bears upon the maximum limitation of statutory damages, and the determination of whether the defendant acted innocently, insofar as this bears upon the minimum limitation, are also for the judge rather than the jury.' Based on the foregoing, the court finds that defendant is not entitled to a jury trial on the remaining issues in this case. Defendant's request for a jury trial is denied.
"The case will be heard on Tuesday, February 24, 1998 from 2:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. and Wednesday, February 25, 1998 from 2:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m."
Keith's restraining order preventing him from picketing Gold Base near Hemet, California was lifted this week.
"We went in and the judge starts questioning Hoden, goes on to Moxon wants to know what kind of proof Moxon is going to present. He makes it clear that the proffer has to go directly to the statute, nothing about motive or that sort of thing. He was polite but firm. He let Moxon go on and on and he'd cut Moxon off by saying 'Oh, no you won't present X evidence.' and finally he finished with Moxon and he turned to Graham Berry, who has for the most part been very quiet except to occasionally object.
"He said to Berry, 'Mr. Berry, do you have a motion?' and Berry says, 'I move for judgment.' 'Non-suit.' and the judge said, 'Granted,' after about one nanosecond after Berry got the words out of his mouth. Then Berry asked for attorney's fees and costs. The court awarded costs.
"Moxon was very quiet. He didn't say word one to the judge.
"[Deana Holmes] tried to serve Barton today in the lawsuit that Berry's bringing against him for slander and libel and some other stuff. Barton ran away! The bailiffs got upset because I tried to serve him in the courtroom, so when Barton got up to go outside, I walked out too, tried to hand the envelope to him, just touch him with it. He put his hands in the air like I had a gun to him. I tried to throw it at him and it landed at his feet."
From the The Press-Enterprise:
"A judge ruled Friday that a frequent protester of the Church of Scientology cannot be blocked from going near its Golden Era film studios in Gilman Hot Springs or its studio manager. Judge Stephen D. Cunnison of Riverside Superior Court on Friday refused Hoden's request to make the restraining order permanent. Henson, who has picketed Scientology sites across the country, was exercising his rights to free speech and did not single out Hoden, he said.
"'You don't have a situation here where the defendant is stopping people. This is not an abortion clinic situation,' Cunnison said. The judge also said Henson's character was not relevant. 'I'm not going to let you turn this into a show,' said a frustrated Cunnison as he slammed on the bench thick volumes of documents submitted by Scientology representatives.
"Hoden testified he approached Henson because he wanted to caution him about the dangers of the high-speed highway, which winds along the base of the mountains north of San Jacinto. He said he became fearful when Henson started attacking his religion. 'He had no intentions of trying to resolve any problems. The only thing he wanted to do was have our entire complex destroyed,' Hoden said.
"Hoden said the church, which is paying the legal costs, may appeal the ruling. 'I'm responsible for making sure someone doesn't get hurt,' he said. 'I'm also concerned about having him around because it could cause an upset.'"
Keith briefly picketed the L.A. Celebrity Center following the decision.
"I got out my picket sign, we crossed Franklin and Bronson, and I started walking a picket on the north (Franklin) side of the CC while Lucy took photos. A guy on a motor scooter was fascinated by the picket. Being slightly short on time, and more than slightly paranoid that this might be a scientologist who was trying to delay me till Barton could be rousted out of bed, I left Lucy talking to him and put my picket sign in the trunk of my car.
"A security guard was walking north on Bronson. I slowed nearly to a stop, leaned over, rolled down the window and give him a friendly greeting, 'Hi!' The guard give me a 'Hi' in response with a totally puzzled expression on his face. That rapidly changed to obvious shocked recognition. I yelled, 'You've been picketed!' In the rear view mirror I could see him ripping his radio out of a pocket in a panic to report."
John Travolta's claim to have influenced U.S. President Clinton's opinion on Sceintnology and Germany was the subject of NBC's 'Meet The Press' televisions show.
"RUSSERT: What this says, Mr. Berger, is that John Travolta, was seduced by the president, and has created, a movie called 'Primary Colors,' which in the words of 'George' magazine, is a 'celluloid valentine' to the president, because you helped him out... on his pet cause of Scientology.
"BERGER: Uh, it sounds to me, Tim, like you're getting, you're getting uh, developing your own conspiracy theories here. Uh, the fact is there has been an issue about, the treatment of Scientology, in f.. a number of countries, Germany in particular. The State Department Human Rights report, was critical of the Germans in terms of discrimination against Scientologists. I did meet with a delegation including, Mr. Travolta, uh, to indicate that we would continue, to discuss with the German government, uh, uh, s.. uh, our our, uh, belief that uh one should not be uh discriminated against on the basis purely of, of belief. And that's uh, that's the, long and the short of it.
"RUSSERT: Did you or the president hope to influence Mr. Travolta, and make 'Primary Colors' more favorable to the president?
"BERGER: Uhh, the only thing I was, trying to get an autograph for my, one of my kids. But other than that I have no ulterior motive.
"RUSSERT: But isn't it unusual for the national security advisor to brief, and actor from Hollywood?
"BERGER: This is not just Mr. Travolta. This was uhh, a delegation of... uh, uh.. several people, I, half a dozen people. Uh, who came in, and they have, and they have been on the Hill, they have been in the State Department, uhh, and, umm, they uh, uh, wanted to, to uh... I didn't 'brief' them, I explained to them, uh, that we would continue to, uh, discuss with the German government, uh, uh, our, general view, of th th that human rights should not be violated."
From the Evening Standard (London):
"All last year, Washington was bemused by the fact that Bill Clinton was bending over backwards to be nice to the very creepy scientology cult - particularly helping them in the struggle in Germany to be accepted as a religion. In November, Madeleine Albright, the Secretary of State, met the German Foreign Minister, Klaus Kinkel, and urged him to stop being intolerant to the scientologists.
"The reason has now emerged in a revealing interview given by John Travolta, the top actor and scientologist, who plays the lead in Primary Colors, the forthcoming movie version of Joe Klein's novel about a womanising Southern Governor modelled on Clinton. Travolta started filming in April, the same time as he was in Washington, lobbying for scientology. He got results: Clinton promptly went to the extraordinary length of appointing National Security adviser Sandy Berger to be his administration's scientology 'point-man'. 'You'd have to be dead not to see that the film favours Clinton,' admits Travolta.
From the New York Times by Frank Rich:
"On last Sunday's 'Meet the Press,' Mr. Berger testily explained just why he had wasted his time and taxpayers' money to brief a movie star's delegation, at the President's behest, about the Administration's defense of beleaguered Scientologists in Germany. Mr. Berger's answer -- 'I was trying to get an autograph for one of my kids' -- is as revealing as it is pitiful. Imagine if a nobody requested a meeting about Christian persecution in China.
"Mr. Clinton personally took on Mr. Travolta's pet cause after meeting the actor at last spring's conference on volunteerism. Now that both Bill Clinton and Scientology are defending themselves against scandalous headlines, a question arises: Could the President have offered to pimp for Scientology, currently battling a nasty wrongful-death suit in Florida, in exchange for a more favorable portrayal in the screen version of 'Primary Colors'?
"I think not. 'Primary Colors' was always going to be kind to Mr. Clinton: Hollywood simply does not cast the beloved Travolta -- or Tom Hanks, the original choice for the Clintonesque hero -- as heavies."
|Lisa Marie Presley|
U.S. tabloid magazine Star reported that Michael Jackson has convinced Lisa Marie Presley that he wants to become a Scientologist.
"In case you're wondering why Lisa Marie Presley is chummy with Michael Jackson again, there's a good reason. Sneaky Michael convinced Lisa that he's finally interested in Scientology. Michael knew Lisa always dreamed of him getting involved in Scientology, so he told her he wants to learn more about her controversial group. That's just what Lisa's been waiting to hear, and friends of Michael predict he'd even join Scientology to get his super-wealthy ex-wife back in his life."
Journal de Geneve and Tribune de Geneve report that Scientologists in Switzerland have been found guilty of slander.
"Two members of the Church of scientology were found guilty of slandering Francois Lavergnat and his association, the Grouping for the protection of the family and individual (GPFI). The interested parties, who had accused in detail the plaintiff of being a dangerous character molesting his family and having taken part in crimes, were sentenced to one month of delayed jail and fines of 3000 and 5000 francs [$2000 and $3300].
"For their defense, the scientologists had affirmed to have said only the truth, in a concern of informing the public on the real personality of their opponent. The Court had a different opinion. The judgement underlines the will to harm of the defendants, who had no other reason than the will to get rid of an opponent who disturbs them. The allegations, which mainly concerned the private life of the plaintiff, are a 'get-even scheme' applied to an anticult activist. 'The right to defend oneself has a limit which the defendants trespassed with their remarks', adds the court, refusing to grant them the possibility to prove their allegations or to show their good faith."
"In the Police court (TP), last 5 February, the disciples of Ron Hubbard had affirmed they could prove their charges. Namely that the president of the GPFI was 'a sower of trouble, a swindler and an ammunition smuggler'. Worse, scientologist newspapers wrote that Francois Lavergnat had threatened children with a revolver.
"In its judgement, the court notes that B. and P. acted 'with conscience and will', particulary by distributing pamphlets containing information damaging the honor of Francois Lavergnat."
Scientologist-owned Tradenet Marketing Inc. is putting it's building in Dunedin, Florida up for sale. From the St. Petersburg Times:
"The three-story glass building at 380 Main St. stands out in a downtown known for its quaint storefronts and restaurants. TradeNet bought the building last summer for $1-million but has since fallen on hard financial times and is under investigation by government agencies in several states, including the Florida Attorney General's Office.
"According to state records, all TradeNet employees, including non-Scientologists, are required to take courses on the management and ethics principles of L. Ron Hubbard, Scientology's founder. Scientologists say the courses are secular. In addition, records show, company officials kept church officials in Clearwater abreast of developments at TradeNet. This included the use of 'knowledge reports,' a method used by Scientologists to keep the church apprised of 'hidden suppression, infiltration, subversion or corruption.'
"TradeNet gave state investigators copies of its 'basic training kit,' which said the company would remain debt-free and planned to reach $10-million in sales by the end of 1996. But, according to the transcript of an August meeting of TradeNet officials, Cooper reported that 'we've got $2.5-million worth of debts that need to be addressed' and 'creditors knocking on our door.'
"After a down payment of $300,000 on its building, the company was making monthly mortgage payments of $8,475. With other expenses, the monthly outlay on the building was nearly $13,000, Cooper said at the meeting. Despite about $5,000 in monthly income from other tenants in the building, TradeNet was taking a loss of nearly $8,000 a month."
SP Times article
|Vaughn and Stacy Young|
The Vashon-Maury Island Beachcomber, a weekly newspaper, ran an article on Scientology's attacks on the cat kennel run by Scientology critics Vaughn and Stacy Young.
"Island animal lovers are rallying behind Robert and Stacy Young, days after an anonymous flier alleged the Youngs brought an 'illegal and diseased' cat kennel to Vashon. Vashon Island Pet Protectors board member Anne Nanthrup said she has been at the Youngs' home a couple times and disputes any allegations of mistreatment. 'I can highly recommend the Youngs as animal lovers,' Nanthrup said.
"The flier alleges that the Youngs have between 200 and 300 cats but that a final tally is hard to determine 'because of all the births and deaths from disease.' Fair Isle Animal Clinic veterinarian Don Wolczko said the flier seems to be aimed at garnering an emotional reaction. The flier asserts the cats have FIP '(Feline Infectious Peritonitis) which is also known as AIDS.' It goes on to urge anyone with a cat to get themselves and their pet tested.
"But FIP is a completely different virus than FIV, Feline Immunodeficiency Virus, Wolczko said. Furthermore, there has not been a single case of a human contracting HIV or FIV from their cat, he said. The couple say the fliers are part of an ongoing effort by the Church of Scientology to silence their criticism. Both Robert and Stacy Young say they are former members of the church and they continue to be vocal critics. She recently appeared in an episode of 60 Minutes about the church.
"On Sunday, two teens were handing out the fliers at Thriftway until a store employee told them to stop. He said the young men told him they were paid $10 to hand out the fliers by a man they had never met. Islander Jolene Lamb said she saw a man in his 40s putting fliers on car windshields in downtown Vashon on Sunday. Lamb said she approached him and asked for his name. She said he refused to give her his name but did say he was doing it for his mother and that she also wanted to remain anonymous. 'If you can't back it up with your name, it isn't worth nothing,' Lamb said she concluded."
Hosted by Operation Clambake