Ex-Scientologist story #340, The main product of Scientology? Lawsuits and scandals.

The cult of extreme greed.

As I have always maintained: Show me a place where the ugly snout of Scientology has raised its head and I will show you the lawsuits and scandals to prove it.  Here is another one, this time by Mark Lewandowski.  The greedy cult of Scientology would rather chew off a members arm rather than return money.  So payments like this, plus the attorney fees, really make the squeal.

Tampa Tribune Pinellas North, May 1 1991

“Church settles lawsuit:Settlement terms not disclosed” by Pat Dunnigan

CLEARWATER – The Church of Scientology has settled its lawsuit with a Michigan man who said church representatives pressured him into paying more than $13,000 for services, church attorney Paul B.Johnson said Tuesday.

Mark Lweandowski said in the lawsuit that church representatives interrogated him for more than four hours in December 1989 and wouldn’t let him leave until he agreed to pay $2,000 for a lifetime church membership.

He was seeking to have that money – and subsequent payments of $6,000, $2,200 and $3,100 – returned. He claimed the money was obtained from him through “the use of fraud, duress and misrepresentation.”

Johnson declined to discuss the allegations in the lawsuit and said he was prohibited by the settlement agreement from discussing its terms.

“This thing has been resolved… and that’s really all I can tell you,”
Johnson said. “All sides are happy with it.”

Barry Glenn, a Palm Harbor attorney who represented Lewandowski, said the settlement was strictly “monetary,” but also said he could not discuss specifics. “Let’s put it this way. It had a happy ending,” he said.

Allegations such as those contained in the lawsuit are nothing new for the Church of Scientology, which has its spiritual headquarters in Clearwater’s Fort Harrison Hotel. The church claims to lead its members to more fulfilling lives through an expensive system of counseling said to rid participants of past traumas buried in their psyches.

According to the lawsuit, filed in Pinellas-Pasco Circuit Court in February,
Lewandowski was promised “spiritual immortality” in exchange for his membership
fee.

Church representatives also tried to take Lewandowski’s credit card and allowed him to leave only after he signed several checks – supplied by the church – authorizing withdrawal of funds from his checking account, the lawsuit said.

Lewandowski notified the church shortly afterward that he didn’t want to be a member and never received any church services, the lawsuit states.

The full article can be reached from this link:  http://www.lisamcpherson.org/lewand.htm

Recently the series “South Park” has been in the news because Scientology wanted to visit retribution on him for spilling the truth about OT III on one of their episodes. 

I have decided to add to this another case that was covered in the same article.  This is of a mother who is suing Scientology for money paid in by her son who died at Flag.  I have been unable to find out more although it has been asserted that it was a suicide.

Maria Echavarria’s complaint, set for a hearing on May 21, seeks only to collect a refund for services her son did not receive and does not make allegations of coercion or fraud.  But Glenn, who is handling Echavarria’s case as well, says that could change if she is unable to get the money she feels she is owned .

“If not, we may very well amend our complaint to include other allegations,” he said.

Two other lawsuits against the church of Scientology have been set for hearings this month, court records show.

In one, American TV& Appliance Rental is seeking more than $71,000 it claims to be owed for office furniture sold and delivered to the church in June 1990. A hearing on the church’s motion to dismiss the complaint is scheduled for May 23.  A second collection lawsuit, filed last month by Aaron Rents, Inc. claims the church owes more than $48,000 for furniture rented under a number of contracts
dating back to 1985. A hearing in the case is scheduled for May 28.

Here is an old list of lawsuits that is very incomplete yet there are 146 cases listed.  If you listed the ones in other countries, especially in the UK and Canada, there would be thousands.  http://www.factnet.org/Scientology/legal.htm

Published in: on October 26, 2011 at 10:57 am  Leave a Comment  

Ex-Scientologist story #339, Disconnection not new, story from ’68.

There are no shortage of people who work hard to revise the history of Scientology to suit their own particular viewpoint.  This has been going on for decades.  To hear some of these folks talk you would think that the evils like the RPF or disconnection was something that hardly existed before David Miscavige arrived on the scene.  Such claims can be refuted if you are willing to do a bit of digging.  disconnection is a case in point.  This practice has been much reprobated in the press in recent years as the terrible practice got more attention.  But it is Nothing New !  The story below is a telling one that illustrates this point.   Keep in mind however that in 1968 the cult was growing by leaps and bounds; those days are long over thank goodness.  The cult now struggles to get new members.

Modern Mechanix

November, 1968

“A True-Life Nightmare”

by Alan Levy.

Scientology: A growing cult reaches dangerously into the mind

The lights in the hall go dim, leaving the bronzed bust of the Founder (spotlighted) at center stage. From the loudspeakers comes L. Ron Hubbard’s voice, deep and professorial. It is a tape called “Some Aspects of Help, Part I,” a basic lecture in Scientology that Hubbard recorded nearly 10 years ago.

No one in the intensely respectful Los Angeles audience of 500, some of whom paid as much as $16 to get in.  I thought it odd to be sitting there listening to the disembodied voice. Among believers, Scientology and its Founder are beyond frivolous question: Scientology is the Truth, it is the path to “a civilization without insanity, without criminals and without war . . .” and “for the first time in all ages there is something that . . . delivers the answers to the eternal questions and delivers immortality as well.”

So much of a credo might be regarded as harmless, practically indistinguishable from any number of minority schemes for the improvement of Man. But Scientology is scary because of its size and growth, and because of the potentially disastrous techniques it so casually makes use of. To attain the Truth, a surrenders himself to “auditing,” a crude form of psychoanalysis. In the best medical circumstances this is a delicate procedure, but in Scientology it is undertaken by an “auditor” who is simply another Scientologist in training, who uses an “E-meter,” which resembles a lie detector. A government report, made to the parliament of the state of Victoria in Australia three years ago, called Scientology “the world’s largest organization of unqualified persons engaged in the practice of dangerous techniques which masquerade as mental therapy.” As author Alan Levy found out by personal experience (pages 100B-114), the auditing experience can be shattering.

How many souls have become hooked on Scientology is impossible to say precisely. Worldwide membership England, South Africa, Canada, New Zealand, Australia, France, Germany, Japan and the U.S. is probably between two and three million. In the U.S. (offices in Washington, New York, Los Angeles and seven other cities), the figure may now be more than several hundred thousand. What is astonishing and frightening is the rate of growth in the U.S.: membership has probably tripled or quadrupled in the past three years.

Recruits to Scientology are most often young, intelligent and idealistic. They become fanatics on the subject, impervious to argument, quick to cut themselves off from doubters. Many young people have been instructed by their Scientology organizations (“orgs,” they are called) to “disconnect” from their families. “Disconnect” means exactly that: sever all relations. Such estrangements can be deep and lasting, leaving heartsick parents no longer able to speak rationally with their children.

Scientology is expensive. To reach the first meaningful stage costs the beginner $650 in tuition. To become an Operating Thetan, Class VIII – the highest present classification can raise the all-in cost (books, tuition, equipment, board and lodging at Scientology centers during advanced training) to as much as $15,000. The high costs have the effect of turning many young Scientologists into permanent parts of the apparatus. To finance their own advanced studies they take low-paying jobs within the org and in the end find themselves alienated from life outside of Scientology.

Scientology is nominally a religion, and the figure of Hubbard has taken on religious implications. The Nebraska-born author of the 1950 best-seller Dianetics: the Modern Science of Mental Health is now adored and remote. The literature hints at persecution. In 1963 agents of the Food and Drug Administration raided Scientology’s Washington headquarters and seized a number of E-meters. Scientologists still speak of the raid on the “church.” Scientology has been banned from the state of Victoria in Australia. In England, where Hubbard established the world headquarters of Scientology at Saint Hill, the government has looked with increasing disfavor on Scientology. Asserting that Scientology is “socially harmful,” the government recently barred from entry a number of would-be participants in a world Scientology congress. Hubbard himself departed from England in the summer of 1966 and now lives on a 320-foot converted passenger ferry called the Royal Scot Man, cruising mostly between ports in the Mediterranean. There, although he claims to have given up his official ties with Saint Hill, he continues to train and send out super-Scientologists to all parts of the world.

An exploring writer becomes personally involved ‘A TRUE-LIFE NIGHTMARE’ by ALAN LEVY

Follow this link for the full stories which has some very cool pictures!  http://blog.modernmechanix.com/2008/04/15/scientology-a-growing-cult-reaches-dangerously-into-the-mind/?Qwd=./Life/11-1968/scientology&Qif=scientology_00.jpg&Qiv=thumbs&Qis=XL#qdig

Published in: on October 26, 2011 at 9:33 am  Leave a Comment