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Scientology’s anti-SLAPP motion in harassment suit being heard today: Rathbun seeks delay

Monique_Rathbun2Monique Rathbun’s harassment lawsuit against Scientology and its leader, David Miscavige, resumes today at the Comal County courthouse in New Braunfels, Texas, and we have someone on the scene.

Local reporter Nick Rogers, who has done fine work for the Texas Citizen, will be sending us updates as today’s events unfold.

At issue this time is Scientology’s anti-SLAPP motion, which is trying to portray Monique’s lawsuit as a cynical and groundless effort that is actually intended to shut down the church’s free speech rights. Monique’s attorneys have filed for a continuance, and hope to get Judge Dib Waldrip to delay Scientology’s motion so she can gather more evidence in discovery.

If Waldrip doesn’t grant the continuance, Ray Jeffrey says his side is prepared to argue the anti-SLAPP motion itself.

We had earlier pointed out some of the flaws in Scientology’s motion, which is attempting to cast one of the most litigious, bullying organizations in human history as an outgunned underdog.

We’ll be looking to see if Monique’s motion for sanctions also comes up, as well as wrestling over setting up a deposition of Miscavige.

Ray Jeffrey tells us that yesterday he entered a formal notice for Miscavige’s deposition, but we have to assume the church is going to continue to do what it can to keep a deposition from happening.

We’ll post updates as soon as we can get them.


The Scientology-Mormonism moment

One of our readers has put together a really interesting video which suggests that as each is hitting hard times, Scientology and the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (a/k/a Mormons) have each turned to very similar methods to stave off irrelevancy. It’s a hoot!



Karen de la Carriere on the RPF’s RPF

Another interesting video from Karen de la Carriere, J. Swift, and Angry Gay Pope…



Posted by Tony Ortega on January 8, 2014 at 07:00

E-mail your tips and story ideas to or follow us on Twitter. We post behind-the-scenes updates at our Facebook author page. Here at the Bunker we try to have a post up every morning at 7 AM Eastern (Noon GMT), and on some days we post an afternoon story at around 2 PM. After every new story we send out an alert to our e-mail list and our FB page.


(New posts will appear below this line.)

9:44 am

We’ve heard from Nick Rogers and Mike Bennitt, who are getting into position at the courthouse. Bennitt tells us that Joe Childs of the Tampa Bay Times is also on the scene, as well as TV reporters. Bennitt hopes to get us some photos before too long.

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9:59 am

Nick says there’s a line to get into the building, but the reason quickly became clear — one of the two elevators is out. Meanwhile, Mike Bennitt tells us he has spotted Wallace Jefferson, who recently stepped down as the chief justice of the Texas Supreme Court. He’s joined his brother, Lamont, as a member of Scientology’s huge team of expensive lawyers.

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10:06 am


Joe Childs has his seat in the front row — he’s set! (Photo by Mike Bennitt)

Nick tells us Judge Waldrip is handling other cases as well — we may be in for some breaks during the day.

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10:36 am

Judge Dib Waldrip is now in the courtroom, but Nick tells us he’s dealing with other matters first.

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10:51 am

Yesterday, we asked Ray Jeffrey if Scientology had filed a response to Monique’s motion for sanctions. He said they hadn’t. But this morning, Nick tells us he spoke to Ray, who told him the church has filed an answer — but did not question the validity of the 2007 texts submitted by Mike Rinder. We’ll try to get our hands on that filing by the church as soon as we can!

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11:01 am

Some side drama developing: Monique apparently pulled “Lone Star” — a local ex-Scientologist — aside to witness for her that a local OSA member was keeping watch on her. When Monique said there was a temporary restraining order preventing surveillance, the female OSA member reportedly said they were in a public place. Trying to get more detail about this.

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11:44 am

Nick reports that Judge Waldrip has cleared his morning docket, and after a break, we’ll finally be getting to the matter at hand.

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1:13 pm

From Lone Star over at ESMB: [Scientology attorney Ricardo] Cedillo is saying [Ray] Jeffrey’s motion to continue the anti SLAPP motion by the CSI is defective. Ray got pretty hot. Ray wants more discovery. Cedillo says requested discovery is not warranted for anti-SLAPP…Cedillo is bulldogging his way around the court today. Trying to filibuster and at times succeeding. CSI and RTC still haven’t produced documents.

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1:52 pm

Getting an update from Nick by phone right now. Details coming soon…

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2:07 pm

Just talked to Nick Rogers, who was out of the courtroom on the lunch break.

He says that Scientology lawyer Ricardo Cedillo and Monique’s attorney Ray Jeffrey really battled back and forth this morning, and once again things got heated.

At issue: Cedillo wanted to present his opening statement and arguments for the church’s anti-SLAPP motion. Jeffrey wanted a delay so Monique can get more discovery — the same request for information that she has for the jurisdictional question that Waldrip has already granted.

So Waldrip at this point has come up with an interesting way to address both requests…

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2:12 pm

Judge Waldrip decided that Cedillo could make his opening statement and arguments, and at the end of the day, the Judge will then decide whether to recess until February 16 so Monique’s side could continue to get discovery before they present their side.

So this morning, Cedillo made his big play for how this lawsuit is really all about Marty Rathbun trying to destroy David Miscavige, which is essentially a religious argument, and therefore protected by the First Amendment and not a matter for the courts.

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2:19 pm

Nick tells us that Cedillo’s argument was that Marty Rathbun has declared himself a new Martin Luther, and he’s out to get the church. It was a religious argument and so should be thrown out on First Amendment grounds.

And we’re hearing from several people that the highlight of Cedillo’s morning presentation was an ostentatious video showing what a colossal big deal David Miscavige is. Nick thought it was put together just for this hearing, and recently — it had footage of the recent New Year’s Eve event.

Once again, Miscavige has found a way to get his testimony directly into court, not trusting his attorneys to make his arguments for him — and, without allowing himself to be cross-examined.

Those who saw it, however, are telling us the video was par for the course for Scientology and actually gives the opposite effect than it’s going for.

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2:20 pm

Nick says that for his part, Ray Jeffrey has been in a feisty mood. He called the Church of Scientology filing an anti-SLAPP motion — which is usually used by outgunned opponents against big bullies who sue to silence critics — like something out of ‘Alice in Wonderland.’

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2:23 pm

Nick said that a lot of what Cedillo presented in his opening was what we already saw in the church’s filing. That it’s a religious dispute that the court shouldn’t be involved in. That it’s protected by First Amendment.

Cedillo showed numerous video clips of Marty, and they were generally the same YouTube videos we’d seen before in the courtroom.

Ray Jeffrey pointed out that the lawsuit was filed by Monique Rathbun, not her husband Marty.

Cedillo said he’d show her role this afternoon.

Cedillo on Marty: “He used his blog to impugn the reputation of the leader of the church, Mr. Miscavige.”

Also, Cedillo denied that Marty was the second in command of the church.

At one point, Nick said, Cedillo showed an image of L. Ron Hubbard’s books and said that Marty was trying to “bust” their copyrights.

“I could see Marty laughing during the video,” Nick said.

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2:24 pm

A short video of Ray Jeffrey shot by Mike Bennitt

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3:09 pm

Maybe it’s not all Cedillo this afternoon. Nick just texted that Ray Jeffrey is now arguing that what he wants in discovery are texts, e-mails and phone records about the harassment operations against Monique and Marty.

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3:54 pm


Photo by Mike Bennitt of Wallace Jefferson, former chief justice of the Texas Supreme Court, sitting with the Scientology team.

His brother Lamont has been representing David Miscavige and the Religious Technology Center as they attempt to get out of Monique’s lawsuit. What will Wallace’s role be?

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4:13 pm

While we’re waiting for the next update, we’ll just put in another plug here for Jason Beghe’s show, Chicago PD, which starts tonight on NBC at 10 pm. Check your local listings.

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6:28 pm

Still waiting to hear from Nick or Bennitt. It’s almost 5:30 in New Braunfels, and pretty late for them still to be in the courtroom…

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6:42 pm

They’re out! Nick Rogers calling me in a moment…

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7:00 pm

The upshot: No decision tonight. Tomorrow Ray will file a request for more discovery. Then Scientology can respond by noon Friday and Waldrip will then decide whether they can proceed with that discovery.

Details in a minute.

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7:16 pm

Nick says that Ricardo Cedillo presented a decent case during the early part of the afternoon, trying to convince Judge Waldrip that the case should be thrown out because this was a religious dispute. Then other attorneys began chiming in. The attorney for private investigator Monty Drake chimed in, for example, saying that the Rathbuns had to prove that Drake had actually harmed the Rathbuns.

But the most interesting thing that emerged about Monty Drake (the Dallas PI), Nick says, was that we found out he had been sent to Marty’s house in 2007 to make sure he was still alive.

(Marty had defected in 2004, but by 2007 he was so underground there were rumors online that he had died. He didn’t resurface until he began seeing other former members in 2008, and then started blogging in 2009. Only then, we thought, did the surveillance begin. Now we learn it started two years earlier.)

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7:18 pm

Nick said that numerous times, Judge Waldrip made it clear he was fed up with Scientology’s delaying tactics and refusal to turn over evidence.

At one point, when Monty Drake’s attorney started talking about being in court tomorrow, and Ricardo Cedillo complained that he’d in court next week, Waldrip said that made his decision pretty easy, “because I’m not going to play gotcha with dates.”

“At that point, they backed off,” Nick says about the Scientology attorneys.

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7:23 pm

Another interesting exchange, Nick says, occurred when Ray Jeffrey said one of the discovery requests he was making were for all of the photos that Scientology had taken of the Rathbuns from 2009 to 2013.

Waldrip said that seemed like a very broad request, and asked Ray if he might narrow it down.

So Ray said they definitely wanted the photos that Monty Drake had taken of the Rathbun home. If you remember from our previous reporting, Marty and Monique discovered in September 2012 that a house down the block from the Ingleside home was set up with cameras to watch them. Marty eventually learned that the house had been leased by Drake.

Ray said he believed those cameras had taken photos of what was going on INSIDE the Rathbun home.

Ricardo Cedillo then objected, saying there were no photos of inside the Rathbun home, just the outside and the driveway area.

Jeffrey then said he wanted Cedillo to go on the record and say that he had looked at every photo taken by the private investigators.

“Then they started haggling over photos that Monique was entitled to,” Nick says. And it was then the biggest mistake of the day was made.

“Lamont Jefferson stood up to speak.”

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7:27 pm

Lamont Jefferson represents David Miscavige and RTC, the entity that Miscavige is the chairman of. It’s been their contention that the court has no jurisdiction over Miscavige and RTC because they are separate from the Church of Scientology International, which has admitted to doing the surveillance.

(Former church officials assure us that this is just a legal tactic, and Miscavige actually runs all of Scientology through the Sea Org.)

Anyway, Lamont Jefferson began objecting to the request for photographs, but then Waldrip interrupted him.

Waldrip: What I don’t understand is why RTC is making objections in a court that they say has no jurisdiction over them.


Nick says Lamont fumbled out an answer, saying something about his client having a vested interest in the photos.

“So Waldrip said it looks like the jurisdictional and First Amendment issues seem to be overlapping, so you better get your client ready to be deposed next week then.”


Then Lamont backed off. “No, I’m just talking about the photos,” Jefferson said, perhaps understanding that once again he’d walked into a trap of his own making.

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7:32 pm

Jefferson then brought up the motion for reconsideration that the church had filed, hoping to get Waldrip to change his mind about deposing Miscavige.

Nick says a hearing on that motion — and on Monique’s motion for sanctions — has been scheduled for January 24.

We asked Nick about Cedillo’s statement that he was going to talk about Monique’s involvement with Marty’s “religious battle” in the afternoon.

“Cedillo just said the same thing as always — that Monique edits his blog, that she made comments on his blog,” Nick said.

Then, at some point, Cedillo began to show a video which was designed to show how Marty and Monique had been waging a war on Scientology — and it was obvious that it was a full-blown documentary, complete with narration!

Ray Jeffrey rose and objected, and Waldrip sustained! No, he was not going to allow that, Waldrip said.

So an entire documentary prepared by Scientology went down in flames. Oh my.

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7:37 pm

It gets even better.

Waldrip did allow the church to show a collection of videos of Marty’s altercations with the Squirrel Busters. But then Ray Jeffrey asked, do you have DATES for these altercations? Did they happen on day 9 or day 90 of the 199-day Squirrel Busters action? In other words, were these altercations happening right after the intimidation squad showed up, or months later after they’d been following the Rathbuns wherever they went for weeks and weeks?

Waldrip agreed and sustained the objection. Cedillo said they would get the dates.

And more: Cedillo responded to the objection by saying that the videos were useful because they reflected what was in the depositions taken so far.

Nick says Waldrip then warned him: He would allow the videos of the altercations, but he said it opened the door to allowing the plaintiffs more evidence, including extra discovery.

In other words, Waldrip was telling them they were giving him the justification to grant Monique’s continuance for additional discovery. Was showing this video footage really worth that?

But Cedillo wanted to show the footage (and we can guess why, because a certain client wants it shown), and so Cedillo went ahead even after that warning from the judge.

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7:41 pm

So at this point, we think tomorrow Ray will file a list of discovery that he wants before his side can be given to counter Cedillo. The church then has until Friday at noon to answer it, and then Judge Waldrip will make his decision Friday afternoon.

But after what Nick told us Waldrip said in court today, we’d be very surprised if he didn’t grant Monique the ability to gather that evidence, and then give her answer to the anti-SLAPP on February 16.

On January 24, the church’s motion for reconsideration (to convince Waldrip not to order Miscavige’s deposition) and Monique’s motion for sanctions will be heard.

And while Waldrip threatened Lamont Jefferson that Miscavige better be ready to be deposed next week, we think it was just a way of delivering the message that Lamont’s argument was really stupid.

Now we’ll call Ray Jeffrey and see if we can get his version of what happened. We may or may not start up a separate story.

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7:56 pm

Another thing from Nick: After Waldrip was telling Jefferson he better have his client Miscavige ready next week, Jefferson then brought up the motion to reconsider.

Nick says at that point Waldrip said that “unless there’s something new, I don’t need to hear it.” (Meaning the motion.) “These competing First Amendment and jurisdictional issues are bogging down the litigation.”

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9:16 pm

Spoke with Ray. It’s worth a story on its own. Look for a new post in another half hour or so.

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  • James Crouch

    The fuhrer is shaking in his shoes right now. I couldn’t possibly imagine how much of the excess super power donation money has gone to these lawyers for this. I don’t think he’ll be throwing those numbers out at the next OT summit. He should just give her the million dollars, what’s the worst that could happen? Bad P.R.? LOL!!!!!

    • Anonymous

      Someone really needs to make a video about all this using that famous footage from Downfall.

  • Eivol Ekdal

    Ekdal Labs signing off – systems down for overnight maintenance.
    Thanks Tony and All.

    • noseinabk

      Thank you for staying up late for us!

    • Missionary Kid

      Thank you Eivol. You helped a lot.

    • PreferToBeAnon2

      Appreciate your heads’ up today!

  • BigMcLargeHuge

    Another thing, on what conceivable basis can you object to the production of photographs of the other party’s freaking house that you took. My mind is seriously boggling at this point which, considering my overall level of cynicism, is a pretty mean feat.

    • Mrs. V.

      Um..yeah. Doesn’t make a lot of sense.

  • Corvusyado

    May I just express my admiration for Monique Rathbun? This “little wog” has the confront level that david miscavege will never have. She walked into the “hexagon” and “threw it down” while miscavage dances around trying to avoid getting into the ring with her. That is “confront” and it should be added to their Technical Dictionary.

    • Anonymous

      Who would have thought that a humble wog could be so effective?

    • richelieu jr

      She pulled a Tone 80 on them.

  • Satansthetan

    Excellent news! Imagine paying that much for foot-nukes!

  • Lars Rosenquist

    OMG – I would hate to be attorney for the “Church”.

    Taking orders that just don’t make any sense from Miscavige – while dealing with Ray’s merciless, no-bullshit, go-for-the-kill arguments while facing a judge that is fed up with the craziness unfolding in his court.

    Miscavige is so out of pt. regarding what reality is in 2014. He’s trying “Doing the things that won, not new things untried as yet” not realising that the world is not what it was in 1965.

    I would go spinning if I had to cope with that…

    • Robin Descamp

      Me too! Or to kick-boxing class. ba dum dum

    • baddog5623

      It reminds me of Hitlers last days, ordering devisions that were not real in to actions and his officers playing along. At the same time no one wanted to tell him the truth or disturb him when sleeping out of fear.

    • richelieu jr

      I actually just finished the new Manson biography and it reminds me a lot of the merry-go-round he had with his lawyers, and then pulling stupid stunts against their advice, etc… It hinkit comes from being psychopathic and narcissitic to such a degree youa ctually think you know better about everything and perhaps can even bend reality to your will.

      Manson, fmaously, was aScinetologist for a few yers inthe slammer and pressulably pcied upa fe of the same tricks SLappy did. Wh

  • baddog5623

    I wish the judge would have let the Rathbun video in. It would show that the full weight of the Scientology institution was mobilized to destroy her image. It would prove what she has been saying all along, that she has been targeted by a giant harassment machine. One would have to ask, who okd the production? Who funded it and why? More people to depose. I got a feeling the judge has seen enough.

    Only one person would be stupid enough to try this, i bet he is beating his tiny fist against the wall right now

    • Mrs. V.

      Better a wall than a person.

    • Eclipse-girl

      I am scared the Judge Waldrip would have gone NUTZ having to endure more vids.

      He was subject to some earlier, or so I thought.

    • Science Doc

      They will have to produce it if it is requested.

  • TheHoleDoesNotExist

    After an entire day of serious discussion and speculation on the merits, morals, missions and motivations of one Wallace Jefferson cast as an off stage character in this legal drama, I am stunned to learn he was but a understudy for Tommy Footbullet Davis, Leader of Anonymous.

    Well played. Didn’t see that one coming.

    • Michael Leonard Tilse

      I thought that was Lamont that was the author of the footbullet, not Wallace?

      • TheHoleDoesNotExist

        Exactly, now that I’ve edited. I sure wouldn’t want to be at their next family dinner. You just know that his brother egged him on to hop on the crazy train.

  • Ten Aug

    Can I just take a moment to thank Tommy Davis for turning over his hat so well to Lamont Jefferson.

    • TheHoleDoesNotExist

      Like minded. Like your nick. It’s real insider.

      • Michael Leonard Tilse

        Wait ’till CS/53 shows up.

        • TheHoleDoesNotExist

          hah hated those. hard to sit still that long for the stupid.

        • Great White Clam

          Now I’m starting to feel all spinny and overwhelmed. I could be PTS!!!!!!!

          • Anonymous

            The spinny part…that’s an Absence of Mass.

            Perhaps an ecclesiastical beating will help?

            • Great White Clam

              I’ll get my frock…….

            • Anonymous

              Why do you still have a frock if you are an apostate?

              I assume at a minimum that you are bitter.

            • Great White Clam

              LOL Should I bring along A History of Man just in case?

            • richelieu jr

              I have a special frock to apostate in.

            • Valerie Ross

              So are you one of the sweet frocked apostates then?

        • richelieu jr

          Stop it! With all this apostating you’ll go blind!

  • Mooser

    Look at how the comment-count jumped this afternoon! Court-room days are a big attraction, and there is much to talk about!

  • California

    Riveting. And what will tomorrow bring? This judge is excellent.

  • Snippy_X

    Aside from the fact that the pictures will likel prove they were peeping into Monique’s living room, bedroom, etc., I wonder if they are worried that the photos will allow someone to trace them back to Miscaviges desktop. Can they in anyway determine which Co$ computers accessed the the address of that camera over the internet? That path could be very incriminating.

    • Anonymous

      The individual computer would be a stretch, because it would share an IP address with the others in its local network. Having said that, they could definitely trace that IP address to Gold or wherever else, assuming Davey wasn’t smart enough to use a proxy. Hint: He probably wasn’t.

      Source: IT guy

      • Eclipse-girl

        Once traced to Gold, given the Miscreant’s penchant for micromanagement, wouldn’t it be reasonable for a Judge to assume that DM had these photos.

        • Anonymous

          Yes, it would be. Especially given the extreme restrictions on Internet access there, and prior testimony in this case. It wouldn’t be a smoking gun, but it would be very suspicious.

      • Imelda Marcos

        It’s hard to believe that Miscabbage would allow his computer to be on a local network with anyone else’s computer. I’d bet there’s some ultra-sekrit privacy rigamarole in place.

        • Anonymous

          I can’t make any in depth comment on the computer networks at Gold, because I obviously don’t have access to them. I do think its reasonable to assume there’s other computers there that can access the Internet, though almost no one would be allowed to use them. If thats the case, they’ll all use the same default gateway, and thus share an IP address.

          • Great White Clam

            DHCP? Or static? Anyway, the “live” computers are probably under armed guard 24/7 with three constantly sec checked per computer. That and cameras pointed at them with cameras pointed at the cameras and hidden cameras pointed at those cameras.

            • Anonymous

              Probably DHCP. Static sucks for anything but the most unchanging networks. But yeah, access would obviously be heavily restricted.

            • Imelda Marcos

              Or that, haha.

          • Imelda Marcos

            No, I know you don’t know their setup, it’s just that I see him as being paranoid and mistrustful, this is a guy who has a “communicator” who uses his Blackberry to relay his instructions to underlings, in order to hide the paper trail back to him. Hard to believe he would want to share an IP address, that he would have ordered someone to make his computer completely private somehow.

            • Imelda Marcos

              Maybe I’m outing myself as knowing little to nothing about how this works, lol.

            • Anonymous

              You’re not doing horribly, there’s just too many unknowns.

            • Anonymous

              Actually, sharing an IP address and exaggerating the number of people who can use it could actually shield him. But honestly, this has become a bit too speculative for my tastes. All I can say is that an IP address can be traced to a location.

      • Snippy_X

        No, they use the state of the art SP9000 Super Pet.
        They also hand wire their own burlwood proxies.

        • Lars Rosenquist

          ” burlwood proxies” LOL

  • DamOTclese2

    Hey wait a minute. Scientology has a Dead agenting DVD that hey created for this hearing and The Underground Bunker does not have a copy of it yet?

    Just where the hell are our spies? What are we paying them for? We should have had a copy of the DVD long before the lawyers did, what’s up with that?

    • Couch_Incident

      We’re showing it to Big Pharma first…

    • Great White Clam

      That’s what I want to know. Bet there’s a lot of footbullet tech in it!!!!!!!

    • TheHoleDoesNotExist

      Wonder if he’s seen Captain David Miscavige’s new office high up in the Super Power building?

  • Anonymous

    “I will not always be here on guard.
    The stars twinkle in the Milky Way
    And the wind sighs for songs
    Across the empty fields of a planet
    A Galaxy away.
    You won’t always be here.
    But before you go,
    Whisper this to your sons
    And their sons —
    The work was free. Keep it so.”


    At least Ronnie blasted off for Target Two before the shinola really hit the fan.

    I’m guessing that wee Davey is feeling a little small right now…heh.

    • Mooser

      A regular galactic Kipling, that Hubbard! Holy moly, that’s execrable stuff

    • richelieu jr

      I hate to compare HUbbard’s doggerel to that odf someon I trulya dmire, but it must be said ithat R Loon’s lyrics bear a passing similarity to those Gene Roddenberry wrote for the Star Trek theme (they were originally to be sung over the opening credits!):


      The rim of the star-light

      My love

      Is wand’ring in star-flight

      I know

      He’ll find in star-clustered reaches


      Strange love a star woman teaches.

      I know

      His journey ends never

      His star trek

      Will go on forever.

      But tell him

      While he wanders his starry sea

      Remember, remember me

  • Seannie5

    Going slightly OT but I follow the screenwriter Max Landis (son of the director John Landis) and he tweeted this today

    @Uptomyknees 10h

    This is FUCKING AWESOME and wonderful. Worth you spreading. #scientology

    He has 16.5k followers. Love it! All you tweeters should give him a follow and tweet him your thoughts on it! :)

    • madmax

      It’s been all over Facebook today. A lot of comments on it and at least 3 different feeds picked it up :)

      • Seannie5

        Very cool!

  • Valerie Ross

    I’m amazed. I really thought Scientology Attorney Humor had reached its’ nadir with “Objecyion, Google is hearsay.” That one is soooo minor as to be almost negligible now. Hey Mish, how about a list “silly things Scientology Attorneys Say” or has it already been started.

    • Bury_The_Nuts

      Are you picking a fight with Scientology?

      • TheHoleDoesNotExist

        It’s a lie. Also, it’s confidential.

        • StatusLevelUp

          Hubbard never had a second wife

          • Zana

            L Wrong Blubbard was a war hero.

      • Valerie Ross

        Um hell to the yes.

        • Bury_The_Nuts

          Cool….on your six!

      • PreferToBeAnon2

        “But not the Pope,” said Cedillo.

    • TheHoleDoesNotExist

      “It’s a war! No wait, it’s a religion!! No wait, it’s a photo finish!!!”

  • Lars Rosenquist

    Me signing out for tonight – Been a great pleasure reading all your intelligent, inspireing, enlightend comments.

    Going to catch 4 hours sleep before starting at my job.

    And I’ll dream about the day, when I wake up and Scientology is history and the empty mourges are converted to fitnesscenters or whatever. Thanks for yet another pleasuremoment…

  • baddog5623

    15 fucking lawyers and this is the best they can do?

    • Douglas D. Douglas

      It’s Keystone Kop Tech. A couple of Keystone Kops are funny, but harmless. Add more, and you get mere incompetence. More than a dozen and you are into major foot bullets and damage control.

    • WhereIsSHE

      It’s akin to having hundreds of cable channels.. and still.. NOTHING’S ON!

  • WhereIsSHE

    “9:16 pm
    Spoke with Ray. It’s worth a story on its own. Look for a new post in another half hour or so.”

    Oh, how I ADORE you and your work ethic, Tony Ortega=)

    • Michael Leonard Tilse

      They would have to pry that laptop from his cold, dead fingers.

    • Mrs. V.

      Then he should get some sleep. It’s been a long day for him….but I really really appreciate it.

  • Cece

    “While we’re waiting for the next update, we’ll just put in another plug here for Jason Beghe’s show, Chicago PD, which starts tonight on NBC at 10 pm. Check your local listings.”

    Haven’t read all the comments – sorry if I’m duplicating but NBC in LA County is 4.1 (antenna TV)

    • WhereIsSHE

      Great reminder, Cece!!
      I’ll be watching with my ipad in my lap!

  • El Con Blubbard

    A whole day and what exactly was accomplished in a nut shell? Did anything get done today or more delays…and wait and wait and wait!! I hate the justice system almost as I hate the cult of Scamonology!!

    • Mooser

      Well, if you want the slow, exceedingly fine grind which makes justice what it is, you gotta wait. No fine before its time.

    • Eclipse-girl

      The judge endured a waste of time from Cedillo. he had to watch vids, probably produced by the asthmatic dwarf himself, and he told Lamont Jefferson to back off.

      as much as it was just one baby step, the judge doesn’t seem pleased with the numerous motions and delaying tactics. The judge saw the ex state supreme court justice and knows that his rulings will be gone over with a fine tooth comb. Judge Waldrip knows he has to let both sides have their day in court, he also knows that he has to write whatever decisions he makes so they will be upheld on appeal.

  • TheHoleDoesNotExist

    Joe Childs, Tampa Bay Times article is up.
    “Scientology lawyer: Confrontations with defector were ‘peaceful protests’ ”

  • Need to know

    Excellent reporting as usual Tony. Just got caught up on the days events and wish to take the chance to say thank you. Also a big thank you to everyone else involved in relating the days events so that we may all partake in these fascinating events as they unfold.

    Thank You.

  • media_lush
    • PreferToBeAnon2

      Thanks lush. Haven’t been to your site in awhile–those articles are sure mounting up! Keep up the good work!

  • richelieu jr

    Showing a professionally produced video of how ostentatious and swaggering Miscarriage is, whilst simultaneously arguing they are poor out-gunned victims, seems pretty contradictory.

    Bullet, meet Foot.

    • BigMcLargeHuge

      I thought that was the height of irony too. Plus, it was TWO professionally produced videos. One was objected to and not shown.

  • RMycroft

    It sounds like Lamont stuck his foot in a bear trap .. with a live bear already in it.

    • DamOTclese2

      I want one of these! I had a bear enter my tent and grab my pack once. :)

      • RMycroft

        You didn’t have food in the pack, did you? Still, what the bear wants, the bear gets.

      • Zana

        You are lucky he didn’t want YOU for the food. … Yikes!!!

  • Douglas D. Douglas

    9:16pm: “Spoke with Ray. It’s worth a story on its own. Look for a new post in another half hour or so.”

    Thank goodness! This thread is closing in one 2,000 comments and is so CUMBERSOME.

    • Artoo45

      Come on. Just one more comment . . . it’s waffer thin . . .

  • Great White Clam

    I saw this on ESMB posted by ChuckNorrisCutsMyLawn;

    “Hubbard never released the ‘I Just Got Fucking Owned’ Rundown, they have
    no idea how to act when they get owned, so they act exactly like you’d
    expect a criminal to act when someone is on to them.”

    • Mrs. V.

      I saw that too and thought about posting it. Pretty funny!

    • richelieu jr

      They have, however, perfected the ‘Rundown Rundown’ Where you run down around a pole until you’re really ruin down and then you go give them the rundown of your wins that they’ve helpfully written for you so you can run down to the pole and get running yourself down as soon as possible…

      (Version 1.0, the ‘Mayor Rundown’ didn’t work so well as it concerned running down the reputation of the mayor of ClearWater for supposedly running down a pedestrian. The police randown the facts and ran the Scilons out of court on a rail. WIN!)

  • richelieu jr

    Why , oh why can this stupid judge not see that the Rathbuns are GUILTY! GUILTY, GUILY, GUILTY of not doing exactly what David Miscavige wants at all times and slavishly licking his boots?
    Isn’t it obvious?

    They must be psychotic, bitter apostates, descended from a long ine of trillion-year-old psychiatrists and Hitler manufacturers that probably don’t call him ‘CoB’ and doubtless mock his height in private (though the microphones don’t pick up well enough! Dammit! Does CoB have to fuck up everything himself? Somebody find him a chest to poke! Stat! These boots aren’t going to lick themselves!)

    • Missionary Kid

      I’m sure he can see it, but he has to let the drama play out. He has to wait until all the arguments are complete enough before making a ruling.

    • Midwest Mom

      He’s not stupid. I’m guessing that he’s anticipating an appeal by the C o S and is trying to handle his duties as diplomatically and as fairly as possible, which is what everyone should want in this situation.. The C o S lawyers are already trying to find loopholes and technicalities and he is doing what he is supposed to do to make sure there isn’t anything that can be contested with regard to his decisions.

      • Victoria Pandora

        I just feel like putting a coldpack on his head in a dark room tonight.
        Hang in there Judge.

      • richelieu jr


    • Observer

      The sarcasm! It buuuurns!

    • Sarah James

      The RPF awaits!

  • Midwest Mom

    From Tony’s reporting above and the probable explanations of Miscavige’s lawyers underneath.

    “Cedillo on Marty: ‘He used his blog to impugn the reputation of the leader of the church, Mr. Miscavige .’ ”

    —-But Mr. Miscavige is allowed the freedom of the press, freedom of speech, and freedom of religion to set up vitriol filled, lie infested websites to destroy Mr. Rathbun, his wife, and others who criticize the Church.

    “Also, Cedillo denied that Rathbun was second in command of the church.”

    —-There was no second in command.

    • El Con Blubbard

      Well Cedillo is right about that – there is no second in command – no one else runs the Church of Scientology and now it will be proven in court. Bend over Miscavige – this ones gonna hurt! And if I may borrow some “ecclesastical terms” that you have recently “coined” in the text messages you sent that now have gone viral across the globe – You will pay dearly for all of your crimes – YOU “CSMF” (DM)! I hope I don’t get sued for using your “term” to describe what you are – have you gotten the copy rights on those terms – you scum bag! Tick Tock – your time is running out!! You better run and hide Miscavige – this one is going to reveal exactly what you have been doing in the Church of Scientology!!

  • StatusLevelUp

    This whole thing seems to be coming down to what a special little boy Miscavige is because he is so damn “ecclesiastical.”

    Guess what Davey, anyone can claim the same thing. It’s our right. Doesn’t mean you can run red lights, does it?

    • Sarah James

      Miscavige is so…special!

    • Free Minds, Free Hearts

      Or beat people up…

  • Sibs


  • Elen

    Thank you Mr. Ortega!! I laughed out loud when the judge said, “…better have your client ready to be deposed…”

    AND… Jason Beghe!! He is HOT & kicking butt! And he has cute puppies (from Mark Bunker’ s video)… what’s not to love?

    • MaxSpaceman

      Jason in character @ 7 minutes into 1st episode–

      “And if you ever go over my head, it’ll be the last head you go over.”

      Delivered much like his, “Show me a muthahfockin’ clear!!

      • Elen

        Right?! Today is the BEST day for Jason to have the premiere of his new (soon to be hit) show!! A perfect way to cap McMidgets day! Are you watching Davey? See how successful an EX-Scn can be?? At least those who went in with good hearts to begin with…

    • And I’m Cute, Too

      I LOL’d too! I figured Davey was toast right then and there, but I guess it was just a warning shot. There are plenty more lulz to come, I’m sure.

  • Tony Ortega


    • Hobson’sChoice


    • Free Minds, Free Hearts

      Tony you are my hero!

    • StatusLevelUp

      You’re the best, Tony!

    • Elen

      You rock! Hardest working man in journalism….

      • K2P2

        Totally agree with Elen. Thank you Mr Ortega! It’s been quite a day.

      • Zana

        The smartest, most perceptive man in journalism. Crafty. Elegant. Wise. And committed.

    • Zana

      You are the BOMB! Can’t wait for tomorrow morning. You’re amazing, Tony. My Hero. :-))) Best site on the internet. I check first thing every morning. You deserve a prize.

  • Caught In the Snow

    It’s way too much fun watching wee Davey’s defenses unravel in the glaring light of day, even from the cheap seats. I feel sort of uncomfortable feeling so much happiness in the demise of another, but this IS Good versus Evil, and Real Lives are at stake. Bravo Team Mosey, Fearless Leader Tony, all the rest of you fighting for truth and justice, and most of all, thank you Diminutive Masquerader, for putting it all out there for ridicule and legal redress. Too damn delicious!

    • Hobson’sChoice

      Often times… the cheap seats provide the best panoramic view!

      • Caught In the Snow

        Indeed, and I do have binoculars for when the action gets good!

      • Zana

        I’m so glad I’m now in the cheap seats!! Definitely the back of the mezzanine. :-) Dont want to be too close to all of that anymore.

    • Free Minds, Free Hearts

      Yes, real lives are at stake and too many have already been lost.

  • Hobson’sChoice

    Tony – thank you! Nick – thank you! Ray – thank you! Monique – thank you! Marty – thank you! and to little baby Rathbun – high five to your Mum!

  • Artoo45

    The Great Miscavige Footbullet Festival and Litigious, Religious Revival of 2014 continues apace . . .

  • chuckbeattyexseaorg75to03

    “His brother Lamont has been representing David Miscavige and the Religious Technology Center as they attempt to get out of Monique’s lawsuit. What will Wallace’s role be?”

    If Wallace was a judge on the Texas Supreme Court, he’s likely there witnessed all manner of how cases are reversed on this or that technicality, on some lofty principle, sidetracking factual overall justice.

    Maybe ex Texas Supreme Court brother Wallace is there to “intimidate” and just sit there and be a distraction to Judge,Waldrip, by Wallace’s mysterious presence alone.

  • Ardiva40

    Excellent- Looking good. 😉

  • Annee

    Captivating reading, Tony!

  • Golden Age of Blech

    Off topic.
    I had a great conversation with a good friend the other day. He is a older hippie kind of guy. We have had many very great talks over the years.
    I brought up the scio thing. He jumped all over LRH. As a charlatan and liar. He was very passionate about the subject of scio. He spoke of the fleet of ships he amassed.
    I laughed and told him it reminded me of the Bagwan Rajneesh and his gold Rolls Royce’s.
    His face just dropped……
    “The Bagwan needed those….!”

    • Golden Age of Blech

      Yes. He was with him. Still arguing with me about him. Aeiii.
      He sees one as a cult. But not the obvious one.

      • Zana

        Christianity is a cult. It’s okay.

        • Golden Age of Blech

          Christianity is only OK because so many people adhere to it. A cult is a cult. No matter how you dress it up.

    • Zana

      I was with Bhagwan. I am a Sannyasin. It was amazing. An amazing experiment in the power of human loving. I have my theories about what the Rolls Royces were about. It doesn’t really matter… all I know is that my experience changed the course of my life. Filled it with Love for the first time. Saved me. He was an enlightened Master. Controversial… Yes. :-) And the power-hungry Sheila took advantage of everything she could. And Osho himself? (he changed his name to Osho when Sheila tried to make him a religion (Rajneeshism). He stopped her plans immediately and changed his name. He did not want a formal religion. He said when he died he will dissolve into each and every one of us. He did.

      I personally think that the Rolls Royces were a way of showing people that abundance is all around us and not to get stuck on material things. And also to keep the money away from Sheila. He did not want her to inherit the ashram and have it taken over after he died (his body was very frail). He knew Sheila and her “gang” were up to no good. Also… he wanted to bring attention to his work. People are still arguing about the Rolls Royces. Can’t figure them out. I can’t. All I know is that my experience with Osho (Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh) was the most exquisite experience of my life and the tuning fork for all the love that came later. I have written a book about my journey up to Rajneeshpuram. If he had never created the circus he created up in Oregon then he would have lived and died as just “one of those Guru guys in India.” Now he is more famous than ever.

      You can believe what you like… but if you really want to investigate, you might want to download one (or more) of his books for FREE here: Don’t miss him because you think he was anything like L. Wrong Blubbard. :-) Osho was the real deal.

      Even the Dalai Lama said, “Osho is an enlightened master who is working with all possibilities to help humanity to overcome a difficult phase in developing consciousness.”

      Don’t miss him just because you don’t know. Read something – anything – and then decide. It’s up to you.

      • Sue

        Really? You can just rationalise the fleet of Rolls-Royces as being insignificant and not at all materialistic, without a twinge of doubt?

        • Zana

          No. I still don’t understand them all the way. When I finished my book about my time there I was meditating about it all and realized that he may have bought them all just to tie up Sheila’s funds with the ashram. So that she could not take take the ashram over after he died — he was very weak. He knew he was dying. He told some friends of mine who were part of his inner circle that the ashram was not what he had planned it to be. The recordings of that Darshan (meeting with the Master) were conveniently lost by the audio/video group (controlled by Sheila).

          I’m sure there are other reasons… One being it was so outrageous that people are still talking about it. And curious about his work. His organization gives all his books away for FREE at (e-books). He could have lived and died as an Indian mystic, and instead he made a real dent in the world. Even the Dalai Lama and Deepak Chopra honor him as an Enlightened Master. He was amazing. Go see a few videos that have been posted on YouTube. If you don’t like the, then never listen to one again. If you do like them you have found a wonderful treasure chest of fathomless love and understanding.

          • Sue

            Thanks for the answer. I won’t be checking out his e-books, though, because I really don’t believe in that stuff.

            • Zana

              Understood. This is a free country. :-) Glad to meet you here.

      • ThetaBara

        If he was concerned about Sheila, why did he continue associating with her? She seems a lot like his Mary Sue.

        • Zana

          I had stepped back by then… I never went back to Rajneeshpuram after 1983 because I saw strange, controlling things that Sheila was doing. It backed me away. Osho was in silence at that time… very frail. I wrote letters… they made no difference. Osho had a small meeting which several of my friends attended. They told me directly that Osho said that “this was not what he had planned” for the ashram. The interesting thing is that EVERYthing that Osho did was recorded by the highest tech things possible. In the Rajneesh Times that came out reporting that particular Darshan, it was reported that all the recording equipment failed and that they were re-constructing what he said from memory. That memory included nothing about Osho saying that the current state of the ashram was not what he had planned for the ashram.

          Osho had suffered for many years from something similar to Chronic Fatigue Syndrome… could have even been candida. Bad allergies, frail. When he came to the states he was in silence and just recouping. He gave power to Sheila.

          I don’t know the rest. I’m not here to defend or create upset… only to tell the truth and to honor the love and depth of understanding I received from Osho. Go read some of what he says in his 360 books and see if it moves you. They are free at If that brings peace and insight, you have been blessed. If it doesn’t, he’s dead and there is nothing to worry about — there is no Sheila or David Miscavige-type character milking his disciples.

          He said that after he died he would melt into each and everyone one of us… and that was the extent of what his religion would be. That is what I feel happened for me.

          Every Sannyasin (disciple of Osho) that I have talked to who was there… when asked if they would do it again… doesn’t even wait for the sentence to end before they grin and say, “In a heartbeat!” It was amazing.

          • ThetaBara

            So, you were in scientology before that? Or after?

            • Zana

              I took sanyasi in 1979. It was amazing. The first time I had experienced love. Unconditional love.

              I got to Sciectology in 2000 or 2001. My business (screenwriting) was not doing well – people were stealing my stuff and I decided that I needed to go to business school to see what I was missing. A friend sent me to CCI in LA. I had also just lost my younger brother who died from alcoholism. I couldn’t stop crying for years. When I got to Scientology and auditing I began to realize that his death was stirring up a lot of the family dynamics we grew up in. He went to alcohol to solve it, I went to god. He succumbed at 47 (he was a virtuoso guitarist) and I loved him very much. When I started to make some money and could pay for auditing that first auditing was magic. It helped me to see my brother’s death from a different point of view and be grateful I had him as a brother. And it also helped me to see and totally release the controlling family dynamic that had tormented me all my life. It was amazing. That’s why I continued for several years.

              I never considered Scientology to be a religion. It was good self help. I was with a field group — I didn’t go to the org for auditing. There was nothing spiritual about my experiences there. Nothing exalted. I had spent the previous 5 years singing in Della Reese’s choir. Now THAT was a spiritual experience.

      • Anandamide

        Engaging in bioterrorism and attempting to infect people with Salmonella isn’t controversial, it’s criminal. What level of enlightenment is chemical warfare?

        • Zana

          That was Sheila and “her gang.” From my understanding, it was actually Osho that turned her in.

          I was not there at the time. I had backed away. I watched in horror from afar as I saw it all disintegrate. Osho said that an ashram is just “a necessary evil.” Every ashram ultimately turns in against itself. It has to. An ashram is just a collection of egos. So stay close to the Master at the very beginning. But it is difficult being close to a Master, because …. because a Master requires you to see what is and dissolve into the Loving. We all want to maintain and protect our own ego. It’s a delicate balance and tremendous work to become enlightened. It’s like making one’s way through multiple blizzards to finally come to the warm hearth of a never-ending source of warmth. Sheila was one of those blizzards I had to make my way through in order to come Home.

          • Anandamide

            While I can appreciate that you clearly got something out of Chandra Mohan Jain’s teachings, your argument is like the CoS indies who blame everything bad on miscavige and still worship LRH. Having a #2 who can take care of the dirty work is nothing new.

  • Sue

    That’s a lovely photo of Monique at the top of the page – she looks both beautiful and serene. I think she’s going to be a great mother – she’s already fighting to keep her little one safe. I hope she is successful and is able to keep those lunatics out of her child’s life.

  • Diane Arden

    Well, Jan. 24th is my birthday. And all i want for my birthday is that all of my acquaintances in Scientology, finally have a day in court, and justice will prevail along with commonsense. All of you that have been SP’d and have harrowing stories about harassment and stalking over the years will finally see David Miscaviage in Court. And also, for all the souls that lost their lives to this Cult. Their deaths are on Miscaviages head.