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Florida Court Hears Scientology Testimony in Strict Secrecy

After a long day of testimony in a Clearwater, Florida courtroom, Ken Dandar tells us that retired Judge Crockett Farnell has scheduled written closing arguments in his secret trial to be submitted by December 27.

Today’s proceedings, which involved Scientology submitting evidence to bolster its claim that it deserves to be awarded more than $1.1 million in sanctions against Dandar, were closed to the public and press, and Scientology even requested that windows in the court doors be covered to prevent anyone from seeing inside (see photo above).

Scientology is suing Dandar because he represented a client in a 2009 wrongful death lawsuit against the church after promising never to sue the church again when the Lisa McPherson wrongful death lawsuit was settled in 2004. Dandar denies that he made such a promise, but Farnell has determined that Dandar acted in bad faith when he violated that 2004 agreement.

Today, Farnell heard testimony from Scientology to explain why its legal bills are so high, which it wants Dandar to pay for.


“All they had to do was file one motion for $2,500. This is scorched-earth litigation, a trademark of Scientology and David Miscavige,” Dandar told us.

Dandar filed a federal lawsuit on October 31 in an attempt to derail the secret hearing in Farnell’s court but failed to obtain a temporary injunction when he was unable to convince federal Judge Virginia Covington that Scientology’s lawyers were “state actors” who were violating Dandar’s civil rights.

Dandar filed an amended complaint in that federal lawsuit last week, and drew from evidence provided by former Scientology executive Marty Rathbun to paint a portrait of Scientology corrupting Florida’s state courts in order to produce the secret hearing in Farnell’s courtroom.

A hearing in that federal lawsuit is scheduled for December 7, and Dandar will have another chance to convince Judge Covington that she should intervene with the secret state court proceedings.

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