Hank Levin gave this history of why he quit Scientology to FACT Net some years ago. As far as greed goes nothing has changed. They are as aggressive as ever when it comes to getting money out of victims.
September 4, 1989
In the late seventies, I paid the Church of Scientology approximately $4000 in advance for “NOTS”, to be delivered at the Advanced Organization in Clearwater, Florida. At this time, my wife and myself had at least $17,000 on account as advanced payments with the Church. When I arrived at Clearwater, the registrar asked if I’d be able to afford additional funds in the unlikely event that they might be necessary for “special repair actions” I confided that I did have some personal reserves invested in precious metals. Even though I was scheduled to begin “auditing”within the hour, I was suddenly told that the “Case Supervisor” had decided not to permit me to begin unless I paid in advance for additional “auditing” to the amount of my personal reserve savings mentioned above. I petitioned all the way up to the “Commanding Officer” of Sea Organization, pointing out that I had been promised I could begin with the $4000 payment and had already paid for plane fare out from my home in Los Angeles, and to cash in my assets would require personally returning to L.A. and wasting double the plane fare. They were adamant in their insistence. I returned to L.A. and sold the gold at a substantial loss andsent them the money. But I insisted this time that I wanted a written promise that the Church’s”Senior Policy” would be followed (“Always deliver what you promise”) and that I would not be again refused service without warning. The promise never came, although I was told it had been sent. I began to tell them I was having a change of heart and was considering asking for a refund. (To actually ask for a refund would get me excommunicated.) The promise then came in the form of a telex, which I found (based on the Western Union coded data) had a falsified date. I then discovered that the staff was telling people that I had been sent back to Los Angeles because I had failed to get “Ethics Clearance”. This was a lie, because I still have the routing form which has my ethics clearance signed off. I then told them I wanted my money back–more to get their attention than to sever my ties with the organization, which I still regarded as too valuable to do without. “Chaplain Worldwide” Robert Harvey phoned me to persuade me to withdraw my request for refund. He actually confided to me that the order preventing me from starting my service had indeed not come from the Case Supervisor, but from the registrars to get my additional funds they knew about. I then realized, in view of the fact that this order had been upheld all the way to the top, that I was dealing with a criminal organization. I then formally in writing demanded a refund of all my advanced payments totaling approximately $17,000.
I was given endless runaround and innumerable people to talk to. I finally began a dialogue with Heber Jentzch, the nominal head of Scientology in the U.S. After much frustration, I got him to admit that the actual Church “policy” (as opposed to the publicly stated policy) was to refund money only in the face of a serious legal threat. I accordingly documented to Heber that I was in communication with the staff of the TV program “60 Minutes”, at which point the money was returned to me in full.
I consider myself lucky. I know people who are still owed comparable sums for undelivered services. These situations must be publicized so people can evaluate whom they are trusting their money with and whom they are trusting to help them.
This looks like a good spot to put this video I found of Jeff Hawkins telling about his time in the cult.