SCIENTOLOGY HISTORY IN TORONTO, PART ONE
In 1977, the Toronto Globe and Mail newspaper reported:
M.D.'s Worried Scientologists Breaking Law:
The College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario will be asked
to investigate whether members of the Church of Scientology had
been practising medicine without a licence.
The Ontario Medical Association Counsel said yesterday some of
its psychiatrist members were concerned when told Scientologists
had been offering passers-by on Avenue Road personality tests.
The psychiatrists felt this constituted practicising medicine
without a license.
The Church of Scientology of Toronto then sued the Globe & Mail for libel
and slander. While a non-profit corporation can sue for libel, its right
depends on whether, as a corporate body, it can exercise the function which
it claims was libeled. The decision of the High Court of Justice,
reported in volume 19 of _Ontario Reports_, pages 62-66, was that the
corporation could not practice medicine (members could, the corporation
could not), and so the statement of claim was struck out, and Scientology
lost the case.
The Church of Scientology decided to infiltrate the offices of the Ontario
Medical Association, and in 1985, after three years of pretrial motions, a
woman was convicted of stealing documents from the OMA at the Church's
behest. Here is an article from the Toronto Sun newspaper, dated
December 15, 1985:
Church used her to spy:
A woman who was "pressured into crime" by leaders of the Church
of Scientology has been given an absolute discharge in
Nanna Anderson, 39, of Scadding Court, pleaded guilty to
possession of documents belonging to the Ontario Medical
Association knowing that they had been stolen. The offence
occurred between November 1976 and March 1983.
Judge Lorenzo DiCecco granted the woman an absolute discharge,
stating she had suffered enough.
Crown attorney John Pearson had told the court the woman was
"pressured into crime by senior representatives of the Church of
Scientology of Toronto."
Anderson, who worked for the OMA, admitted taking the documents
and giving them to a Scientology member to be photocopied and
then returning the file.
Anderson said she was asked to get a file with more "meat" in
it, but did not comply with the request.
Often testifying in tears, Anderson testified on "15 years of
unbelievable stories" during her association with the Church of
Scientology, beginning when she was 17.
In 1979, she said, a doctor who was a member of the church led
her to believe she had cancer and asked her to obtain funds from
her relatives for medical treatment. She alleged 10% of the
money would have gone to him.
After moving to Canada from England, Pearson said she did not
work for the church initially. But the church representatives
approached her through her husband, a church member, and
reminded her she had signed a long-term contract while living in
She was hired by the OMA and church representatives said they
were interested in obtaining information from the OMA because the
association was looking into whether the Church was practising
While Anderson was employed at the OMA, she received a letter
from Herbert Parkhouse, a senior official of the church in
England thanking her for the work she was doing, court heard.
Anderson said she divorced her first husband in England in 1974
because Parkhouse had said he was "bad for me." She said she
wed Paul Anderson because Parkhouse said Anderson wanted to
"If they said march, I would march."