CCHRA Canton Journal column on October 17th by Bill Thibeault revealed that recent protests in Canton, Massachusetts have been held by a front group of Scientology. "Did you see where a small group of out-of-town zealots came to Canton a couple weeks ago to picket the Judge Rotenberg Center out there on Turnpike Street? The well-publicized picketing only lasted a couple hours, and they even trotted out a lady who claimed to be a Canton resident, except when I attempted to contact her for this column, I couldn't find her anywhere in town, which leads me to believe that she either in hiding or may have been fibbing about her place of residence to get some local media attention. "This strident group of picketers were apparently from a group that calls itself the 'Citizens Commission on Human Rights' a militant group which was created by, and serves as a front organization for the highly controversial 'Church of Scientology.' In case you're unfamiliar with the Church of Scientology, it was founded back in 1954 in California by the late Lafayette Ronald Hubbard, a prolific but mediocre science fiction and fantasy writer and while the 'church' presently claims to have several million members world-wide, published reports say that critics and other knowledgeable sources insist their actual membership is much less. "The Church of Scientology has numerous critics and has a reputation of being a 'dangerous mind-control cult' that conducts coercive religious practices, but one report says an attorney who represents the church insists the church doesn't practice 'mind-control' but admitted it does engage in 'behavior modification.' "In 1963 the government of the state of Victoria, Australia became so concerned with the claims and actions of the Church of Scientology they created a special Board of inquiry to 'inquire into, report upon, and make recommendations concerning scientology as known, carried on, practiced and applied.' The inquiry board headed by an Australian official named Anderson, held 160 days of hearings, received pertinent documents, heard oral evidence under oath from 151 witnesses. The final Anderson Report issued in 1886 pulled no punches and was highly critical of Hubbard and his church. "Next week I'll tell you what they concluded from all the evidence they considered, and I'll also go into some of the things their CCHR satellite has been up to." Message-ID: firstname.lastname@example.org
GermanyAm article in FOCUS on October 14th reported that a new report on Scientology has been prepared for the German government. "The government of the Free State of Bavaria paid 250,000 Euros for the 'most comprehensive scientific research to date' on the controversial Scientology psychocult. The 680 page study was four years in the making and is the result of efforts by psychologist Heinrich Kuefner, forensic psychiatrist Norbert Nedopil and legal scholar Heinz Schoech. "Several of the psychocult's areas of operations and its internal structure are said to be 'in conflict to central principles of our legal system.' The authors were particularly critical of cult members being subject to constant demands of improvements in performance, including cutting off contact to close relatives and having relatively minor infractions regarded as crimes. Many of the cult courses were regarded as illicit practice of medicine, with some texts fulfilling preliminary conditions for fraud. For these reasons the authors saw that conditions of a criminal association were potentially met, and that there was sufficient evidence present to warrant consideration of an association ban. "The Interior Ministry of the Free State of Bavaria expressed its satisfaction with the findings of the researchers. In particular, they were interested as to the potentially criminal aspects of the organization. It was said that legal alternatives would be carefully weighed, and that these deliberations would set the tone for future dealings with Scientology." From STERN magazine on October 16th: "Reputable experts say that hundreds of psycho-cults as dangerous as Scientology have sprouted up in Germany. These new groups, most of which are rather small, are said to be a new form of extremism with respect to degree of danger, aggression and totalism. Former members of such groups have reported cases of brainwashing, psycho-terrorism, dependency and shameless fraud. Some of the victims say they were made to completely disconnect themselves from their families and to give all their Euros to self-proclaimed gods. "Although a parliamentary committee of inquiry back in 1998 urged that the increasingly perfidious operations on the psycho-market be put in check, the German parliament has yet to react. The committee had recommended consumer protection regulation, and had promoted the idea of a 'life management assistance' law. The law was supposed to enable consumers to obtain information, prior to the signing of a contract with any commercial provider of life management assistance, about the provider's qualifications, the methods to be used, and the extents of time and of finances to be obligated. "'Consumer protection applies everywhere, not just on the psycho-market,' said Professor Ralf Bernd Abel. The lawyer served as an expert on the committee of inquiry and is currently providing counsel to the German government in a legal dispute with the Moon cult. 'If a principle applies to groceries, meaning products that affect bodily health, then it should be no different with products that affect mental health,' Abel told Stern." Message-ID: Pine.LNX.3.96.1021015143542.112Aemail@example.com Message-ID: Pine.LNX.3.96.1021016160914.110Afirstname.lastname@example.org
Keith HensonA previously sealed order was posted to a.r.s this week, finding Keith Henson to be in contempt of court for asking Internet users to send him copies of NOTS 56. The document is a parody of secret Scientology processing levels, written by Keith Henson. "On June 16, 1997, this court issued a Permanent Injunction against defendant Henson. RTC asserts that through Henson's postings to the Internet on October 24, 2001 and May 9, 2002, he violated the provisions of the injunction. With respect to Henson's October 24, 2001 posting, the court disagrees. With respect to part of Henson's May 9, 2002 posting, however, the court finds that Henson was in contempt of the Injunction. "RTC first claims that on October 24, 2001, Henson made a posting to the alt.religion.scientology newsgroup on the Internet soliciting people to send him NOTs 56. 'Of course I don't have any of the NOTs, though surely I could get them if I cared to. But what is needed for the project is a list of the words and a list of the words in groups of two and threes. Such a list plus frequencies of the words and combinations I think could be posted without fear. A long time ago someone fed the NOTs to a chunk of dense Perl code called Travesty. Travesty makes such a list as part of the making 'travesties' of the material fed to it. I can't locate it, but the real NOTs series only went to 55. If you can find NOTs 56 on the net please email it to me or repost it.' "Asserting that NOTs 56 is one of its copyrighted Advanced Technology works, RTC alleges that Henson has violated the Injunction. Henson does not deny that he made the October 24 posting. Instead, Henson argues that he is to fact the author of NOTs 56 and that it was created by editing the output of a mechanical process that used a list of words and word frequencies in L. Ron Hubbard's writings. RTC offered testimony from its president, Reverend Warren McShane, stating that NOTs 56 is an unregistered, copyrighted, unpublished work to which RTC holds the exclusive rights. McShane explained that to his knowledge, no one had published NOTs 56 and that unlike the first 55 NOTs, NOTs 56 had not been stolen by an outsider. "The court concludes that RTC has not met its burden to prove by clear and convincing evidence that Henson violated the Injunction by asking for a copy or a posting of NOTs 56. RTC fails to prove by clear and convincing evidence that anyone would have understood Henson to be seeking the real NOTs 56. NOTS 56 is not included in the list of protected Works attached to the injunction a Exhibit B, and it has not been registered with the Copyright Office. Henson's posting itself implies that there is not a real NOTs 56 and that what he was seeking is a fake document. "RTC also claims that on May 9, 2002, Henson posted to ARS a portion of RTC' copyrighted NOTs 34; and a hyperlink to a website where persons could view a copy of NOTs its entirety. 'Here is my original Letter to Judge Whyte less most of NOTs 34. Your can find the rest of NOTs 34 dozens of places on the net.' "RTC argues that in posting the link, Henson is 'causing or including' others to share a copy of NOTs 34 on their computers and to download it. Henson maintains that he did not violate the Injunction because his activities constituted fair use and are therefore permitted by the Injunction. The court concludes that Henson's May 9 posting of the hyperlink violated the Injunction. Because an individual could effectively acquire a copy of NOTs 34 on his or her computer by accessing the link provided by Henson in his May 9 posting, Henson has violated the Injunction. "RTC requested that the court grant it the attorney's fees it incurred during the contempt proceedings; set a significant, prospective fine that Henson will be required to pay for any future violations of this court's Injunction; and refer this matter to the United States Attorney for prosecution for criminal contempt. While the court declines to refer this matter for criminal contempt proceedings at this time, it does conclude that RTC is entitled to recover reasonable attorney's fees for bringing Henson's violation of the Injunction to the court's attention, and that in the future, sanctions will be imposed for any and each future violation of the Injunction on Henson's part. "The court concludes that although the amount of time expended on this matter is reasonable, it would be unreasonable to compel Mr. Henson to pay RTC's attorneys' fees, including time charged for travel, at the billing rate charged by Mr. Rosen. While RTC may chose to hire counsel at the exceptionally high rate of $615 per hour, it cannot reasonably expect that Henson should be held accountable for the full amount of its hiring decision. The court orders defendant Henson to pay RTC's reasonable attorney's fees it amount of $14,175. "Finally, to ensure Henson's future compliance with the Injunction, the court hereby orders for any and each future violation of the Injunction, Henson will be subject to a sanction in the amount of $500. Henson could, of course, avoid the imposition of this sanction by refraining from the behavior proscribed by the Injunction." Message-ID: email@example.com
NarcononLa Republica reported on October 11th that the death of a Narconon patient in Italy is under investigation. "Maybe Federica, 33, could have been saved; the former drug addict felt ill at the Narconon Community in Torre dell'Orso, at Meledugno, and later died at the Vito Fazzi Hospital in Lecce. What killed her, reads the autopsy, was a peritonitis. The woman was assisted at the therapeutical community at Torre dell'Orso by an employee of the facility, Rodolfo Savino, 45 of Mesagne, and driven to the hospital, where she died. The investigating magistrate ordered an autopsy to clarify the causes of her death. "The day after, the community employee who assisted the woman, Rodolfo Savino, was stabbed in the abdomen by Giovanni Costa, 32, who, before the assault, wrote a letter to his fellows urging them to hold out and go on with the program to its end. Costa was held by Carabinieri soon after the assault, and was jailed with the charge of attempted murder. Savino will recover in 10 days." Message-ID: firstname.lastname@example.org
World Trade CentersThe New York Post reviewed a book written by a Scientology volunteer minister who spent time at the World Trade Centers disaster site. "Apparently, the demand for reading material about Sept. 11 is so drastically high that you can have spent three weeks feeding volunteers at Ground Zero and score a book deal. '21 Days at Ground Zero: A Young Volunteer's Story' is a new memoir by Juliet McIntyre, a 20-year-old Scientologist/aspiring actress who did, in fact, spend three weeks at Ground Zero feeding volunteers. "'A lot of people - neighbors and friends - had questions,' says McIntyre, who lives on the Lower East Side. 'I thought if I could write the book, it would help people understand.' Yet McIntyre is the central character and Ground Zero the mere backdrop, with cameos by visitors Vince Vaughn, Edward Norton, Susan Sarandon and fellow Scientologist John Travolta. "Tales of hardship include less-than-ideal sleeping arrangements: After trying to sleep on a plank of wood, then moving on to a row of rubber bins, she and her fellow volunteer Erica finally got some fireman cots. But McIntyre says that the cots were hardly much better than the plank. "Also in the book: pictures of McIntyre as a 'child model,' posing with Ben Stiller at Ground Zero, and one in which she stands in front of the wreckage with her Erica. The caption: 'I took off my asbestos mask briefly to pose for this photo.' Heroism indeed." Message-ID: email@example.com
Protest SummaryKeith Henson and Christopher Wood reported a protest at the Toronto Scientology org on October 18th. "We picketed longer than usual (1-3 pm). Handed out a good number of flyers, perhaps 100 and ran clear out of Parsonage ones again. Chris and Gregg handed out at least 50 each. Chris reports that the body routers they had out (first time in ages) quit 10 seconds after he showed up and that Mario was visibly steaming. They saw him and immediately went inside and put down their pamphlets. Then Gregg showed up and they closed the Dianetics Foundation door. Chris said it's like they'd been instructed that they were not to share a sidewalk with him." "Picketers: Me, Gregg, Keith. Leaflets: Xenu/Crimes, Property Tax, Hubbard's Science/Judges. (30 of the latter passed out by me, didn't get a count from the others.) "When I arrived, the body routers looked at me, and I looked back at them. I even offered a leaflet in their general direction. After a short three-count, both body routers went inside the Dianetics bookstore and put down their leaflets. Mario then came outside and looked up and down the street. I said something along the lines of 'if you're looking for the others, they'll be along shortly.' We picketed for two hours, with no actual problems. "The org had a wooden table plus canopy out. Once the wind gusted pretty high, and blew the canopy (canvas on light metal struts) right across the sidewalk. So, I moved it back. Didn't get any Scientologists complaining at me or about me, which was novel - in the past the org has complained about me leaning my sign against the building and picketers walking under the canopy (which overlies the public sidewalk). "It was traffic jam day on Yonge Street, due to some construction to the south. This got me plenty of honk acks, and the odd passenger in a car wanting a leaflet. I know it's probably some form of traffic violation if I give them leaflets, but my experience in the past is that if I don't give these people leaflets then they end up blocking traffic. So I pass over the leaflet and move on." Message-ID: firstname.lastname@example.org Message-ID: caHs9.1024$Zy4.email@example.com
RussiaThe Washington Times reported on October 20th that a Scientology exhibit will be held in the Kremlin in Moscow. "An exposition dedicated to the life of the Church of Scientology's founder, Ron Hubbard, will be held within the Kremlin's walls Tuesday, church officials said in an invitation issued Friday. The one-day exposition, titled 'Ron Hubbard's Life in Photos,' will be open for public display in the Kremlin's former Congress Palace. "The Church of Scientology claims some 10,000 members in Moscow. Russia's Justice Ministry sought to have it banned earlier this year, arguing that it had failed to re-register as required under a new law on religious organizations and that it was no longer active in Moscow. Two courts dismissed the complaint." Message-ID: firstname.lastname@example.org
Reed SlatkinReuters reported on October 15th that a second Scientologist will plead guilty in the Reed Slatkin investment scam. "A man who allegedly tried to obstruct a Securities and Exchange Commission investigation into EarthLink Inc. financier Reed Slatkin has agreed to plead guilty to federal charges, authorities said on Tuesday. "Daniel W. Jacobs is charged with conspiring to obstruct an SEC investigation into Slatkin, who pleaded guilty in April to 15 charges of fraud and conspiracy for bilking nearly 800 clients out of $600 million in an elaborate Ponzi scheme. Thom Mrozek, a spokesman for the U.S. Attorney in Los Angeles, said in a statement that Jacobs conspired with Slatkin to obstruct the investigation by providing the SEC with false testimony and documentation. "Mrozek said Jacobs and Slatkin, with the help of others, fabricated correspondence and account statements and set up false European phone numbers to make it seem that a fictional brokerage company in Switzerland held hundreds of millions of dollars in investor funds. Jacobs, 60, also pretended in letters and phone calls to be a representative of a European financial institution, Mrozek said, and was paid $1 million in gold coins by Slatkin. "The charge against Jacobs carries a maximum penalty of five years in federal prison and a fine of up to $250,000. Under a plea agreement with prosecutors, Mrozek said, he could also be ordered to pay $1 million in restitution." Message-ID: 0Vdr9.email@example.com
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.