A man named Mark Burton filed a wrongful death lawsuit yesterday in Los Angeles against comedian Jim Carrey, claiming that the actor should be held liable in last year’s apparent suicide of a 30-year-old woman from Ireland named Cathriona White.
Cat White was Jim Carrey’s on-again-off-again Scientologist girlfriend, and a suicide note she left behind suggested that she killed herself because she was distraught over Carrey breaking up with her. But she was also married to Burton, who is accusing Carrey of illegally obtaining prescription medicines under a fake name in order to supply them to Cat, who used them to end her life. Carrey has maintained that the medicines were stolen from him, and he didn’t notice they were missing until it was too late. He expressed great distress at her death, and attended her funeral in Ireland. But Burton claims in his lawsuit that Carrey reneged on an agreement to help pay for the funeral’s costs. Burton’s attorney, Michael Avenatti, used Twitter yesterday to claim that Carrey’s involvement in his former girlfriend’s death is so suspicious, it warrants a criminal investigation by the Los Angeles County District Attorney.
Media outlets are eating up the story, naturally, but few reports are asking any questions at all about who Mark Burton is, or are bothering to remind readers that last year it came as a huge shock even to some of Cat White’s closest friends when the L.A. Coroner revealed that she was a married woman.
Today, we have new information that should put Mark Burton’s lawsuit, and Michael Avenatti’s statements about it, in perhaps a different light.
Two independent witnesses, both personal friends of Cat White, tell the Underground Bunker that Cat made it crystal clear to them that her quick marriage to Mark Burton was one of convenience only, and was intended to fool immigration officials so Cat could gain the legal status she needed to remain in the United States. Additionally, both of our witnesses say they are so certain of their information, they are each willing to speak with law enforcement officials about the fraudulent nature of the Burton-White marriage.
After Carrey and Cat broke up in 2012, Cat was desperate to find someone who would marry her so she could stay in the country, and she approached multiple Scientologist friends about helping her out with fake marriages before she quietly went to Las Vegas in January 2013 to marry Burton. (When she died last year, Cat had been living for three months in a Sherman Oaks home, and Burton lived hundreds of miles away in Oregon.)
In fact, marrying a friend for immigration status was something Cat White had talked about for years, even before she began dating Carrey. In 2010, two years before she started up with the actor, Cat and her friends staged a fake wedding with one of her fellow Scientologists in order to produce wedding photos that could be used to fool immigration authorities. Cat ultimately didn’t go through with marrying that man, but a photo from the event exists, and we have a copy.
We asked Burton’s attorney, Avenatti, for a statement about Burton’s marriage to White and whether it was legitimate. He told us that all that mattered was that Cat’s death certificate named Burton as her husband. He then sent us a generic statement about the “Carrey spin team” that didn’t address the Burton-White marriage.
Carrey, meanwhile, put out a strong statement characterizing the lawsuit as a shakedown attempt: “There are moments in life when you have to stand up and defend your honor against the evil in this world. I will not tolerate this heartless attempt to exploit me or the woman I loved,” he said in a prepared statement. “Cat’s troubles were born long before I met her and sadly her tragic end was beyond anyone’s control. I really hope someday soon people will stop trying to profit from this and let her rest in peace.”
Cat White grew up in Ireland, and began her journey to Hollywood and Scientology when she met an Austrian photographer’s family who lived in a castle in Tipperary. We’ve written before about how Gottfried Helnwein’s family, particularly his son Cyril, befriended Cat and impressed her with their connections in Scientology. The Helnweins were connected to musician Beck Hansen and the Ribisi clan, who seemed to have a pipeline of young Scientology talent making its way in Hollywood.
Cat moved to Los Angeles in 2009, and began chasing Hollywood success while she also began her journey in Scientology. Thanks to the Helnweins, she did fall in with the Ribisi clan’s peripheral members, and soon found herself dating a Scientologist named Tiber McCormick, followed by another Scientologist, Tyler Hynes, who were both part of the young Hollywood crowd she was hanging with.
But one of her close friends tells us that Cat was also very aware that she was in the country illegally after her tourist visa ran out.
“She was looking for someone to marry so she could stay in the country. She was trying to get Tiber to marry her,” our source says. (She asked not to be named in this story but says she will soon be going public when a documentary she’s involved in gets released.) “We were all really close. Tiber, and Mark Burton, and other Scientologists, we were all best friends.”
Our source says Cat was open about the fact that she was in the country illegally and needed to do something about it. And Cat was counting on one of her male Scientologist friends to help her out.
“In fact, Cat had a fake wedding. At somebody’s house up in the hills,” our source says.
One of Cat’s male Scientologist friends agreed to go through with a sham marriage, but they knew they’d be quizzed by immigration officials to find out if it was a real relationship. So in the spring of 2010 they decided to stage a fake wedding so they’d have photographs to show.
Our source shared with us a photo from the wedding party, showing Cat in her white wedding gown. Unfortunately, it’s not a high resolution shot. But if you know Cat, it’s unmistakably her in the gown.
Our source says the fake wedding ended up being for nothing after Cat and her friend decided not to marry. Instead, two years later, she met Jim Carrey and began dating him. The two seemed genuinely interested in each other, but our source says that Cat definitely had in mind marrying Carrey so she could stay in the country. Instead, after dating him for several months, they separated
“She was devastated when they broke up,” our source tells us. And suddenly, her immigration status took on even more importance.
“She asked like five other Scientologist dudes to marry her so she could get a green card before Mark said yes,” our source says. “They were not married for anything else but for her to get that green card.”
They had met on the set of low-budget film sets where Mark was a cameraman and Cat did makeup and hair. Our source says Mark agreed to the sham marriage in part because he’d long had a crush on Cat. But it wasn’t something she felt in return. “Cat was not into Mark like that. They were really close, but not like that.”
Records show that on January 15, 2013, Burton and Cat were married in Las Vegas. This time, unlike the sham wedding in 2010, other friends weren’t involved. Very few of Cat’s friends knew about the marriage at all.
“I saw her after she and Jim broke up, and she said she got her green card. I said, ‘How’d you swing that?'” says our second source, another close friend of Cat’s who came to us independently of the first.
The second source says Cat told her about the marriage to Mark Burton several weeks after she got back from Las Vegas. “She got an apartment with him, but it was for show. She moved back with Jim after she started dating him again. There was no real relationship with Mark as a husband.”
It’s believed Cat and Carrey were on and off again until they were spotted dating in March 2015. Then they broke up again a year ago, in September 2015. That breakup apparently fueled Cat’s decision to end her life, and she made use of Carrey’s prescription drugs, which he’d obtained under the fake name “Arthur King.”
Now, Cat’s former friends say, they’re disgusted that Mark Burton is suing Jim Carrey and claiming that he was responsible for Cat taking her life.
“The guy’s crazy,” says our second source. “Everyone knows it was a set-up marriage.”
“He’s such a fucking retard, he’s so stupid. It’s unbelievable that he’s suing,” says our first source. She has no doubt that Burton is listening to people in his life who see things in stark terms of the hunter and the hunted.
“Mark used to tell me that the insurance company his parents worked for could spy on anybody,” she says, referring to David Morse Associates, a notorious insurance investigations company that became a haven for former Scientology spies, including the company’s CEO Duke Snider, Mark Burton’s stepfather.
As we pointed out in an earlier story, Burton’s stepdad is a former Scientology spy who was convicted of felony conspiracy and sentenced to prison as part of the largest infiltration of the U.S. federal government in history, Scientology’s “Snow White Program” that broke into and burglarized federal offices from 1974 to 1977.
In other words, Mark Burton was raised in Scientology, and with ruthless role models. He’s hired Avenatti, a high-profile attorney who’s tangled multiple times with the NFL and, before he became a lawyer, worked in a consulting firm run by Rahm Emanuel.
Avenatti’s complaint on behalf of Burton accuses Carrey of being unforgivably at fault for Cat White’s death:
— Carrey could monitor surveillance cameras outside the home that showed Cat had entered the house but not left for more than a day, and yet he didn’t make an attempt to check on her, the complaint alleges.
— Cat’s lifeless body was discovered on September 28, and an autopsy showed she died from ingesting Ambien, Propranolol, and Percocets, all of which had been prescribed to Jim Carrey under the name Arthur King.
— The lawsuit accuses that Carrey “marketed” and “distributed” the drugs to Cat on September 21.
— Cat likely overdosed on September 24, though she wasn’t discovered until September 28.
— On September 27, Carrey sent Cat a text saying that his drugs were missing, and the lawsuit alleges that Carrey did this as a ruse to cover up that he had voluntarily given the drugs days earlier to Cat. He continued his ruse as “a good guy” by offering to help pay for funeral expenses — but later reneged on it.
Burton is suing Carrey for wrongful death as well as violating drug handling laws. The lawsuit asks for an “ex parte prejudgment writ of attachment” so Carrey’s assets can be seized, “including his Gulfstream V private jet” in advance of what’s likely to be a large award.
Well, it’s certainly worth asking, at least.
“I think it’s so selfish, and it’s really sad. Mark is so disrespectful for bringing this all up again and suing Jim,” says our first source. “Jim Carrey was so sweet to her. He had nothing to do with her killing herself.”
She says she’s sure that Burton is being manipulated as a Scientologist to make the play for a big settlement from Carrey. “Mark actually has a big heart. But this is something Scientology does to manipulate people to do its work for them. It’s selfish, and it’s hardcore manipulation by the church.”
OUR CATHRIONA WHITE COVERAGE
Sept 30, 2015: Jim Carrey’s Scientologist girlfriend on ‘SRD’ when she killed herself: Friends
Oct 1, 2015: Cathriona White’s Scientology ‘twin’ on grueling courses was an actor named Travis Case
Oct 4, 2015: Meet the young Hollywood types who introduced Cathriona White to Scientology
Oct 6, 2015: Scientology spied on Jim Carrey to get him on ‘Purif,’ says former exec
Oct 6, 2015: Cathriona White was married to Scientologist Mark Burton
Oct 7, 2015: A secret Scientology wake, a ‘Snow White’ link, & more odd twists emerge in the Cat White story
Oct 8, 2015: For some reason, news sites are keeping quiet about who found Cat White’s body. So here he is.
Oct 9, 2015: The Scientology-Ireland connection that propelled Cathriona White to Hollywood
And here’s the court complaint…
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Learn about Scientology with our numerous series with experts…
BLOGGING DIANETICS: We read Scientology’s founding text cover to cover with the help of L.A. attorney and former church member Vance Woodward
UP THE BRIDGE: Claire Headley and Bruce Hines train us as Scientologists
GETTING OUR ETHICS IN: Jefferson Hawkins explains Scientology’s system of justice
SCIENTOLOGY MYTHBUSTING: Historian Jon Atack discusses key Scientology concepts
Other links: Shelly Miscavige, ten years gone | The Lisa McPherson story told in real time | The Cathriona White stories | The Leah Remini ‘Knowledge Reports’ | Hear audio of a Scientology excommunication | Scientology’s little day care of horrors | Whatever happened to Steve Fishman? | Felony charges for Scientology’s drug rehab scam | Why Scientology digs bomb-proof vaults in the desert | PZ Myers reads L. Ron Hubbard’s “A History of Man” | Scientology’s Master Spies | Scientology’s Private Dancer | The mystery of the richest Scientologist and his wayward sons | Scientology’s shocking mistreatment of the mentally ill | Scientology boasts about assistance from Google | The Underground Bunker’s Official Theme Song | The Underground Bunker FAQ
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