Daily Notifications
Sign up for free emails to receive the feature story every morning in your inbox at


Ryan Hamilton files another lawsuit against Scientology’s Nevada drug rehab facility

Ryan Hamilton

Ryan Hamilton

Less than a month after he filed a lawsuit against Scientology’s Nevada drug rehab unit, Las Vegas attorney Ryan Hamilton has filed a very similar federal lawsuit on behalf of another plaintiff who says she was defrauded by “Narconon Fresh Start” and its deceptive practices.

Virginia resident Cathy Tarr and her son, Michael Tarr of Florida, are the plaintiffs in the new lawsuit against Scientology’s facility in Caliente, Nevada, which also goes by the name of “Rainbow Canyon Retreat.”

Like in the previous complaint, Hamilton presents a thorough rundown of the kinds of problems that we’ve heard from so many people who get sucked into Narconon without knowing that it’s connected to Scientology.

In April last year, Cathy was trying to find a rehab facility for her son, who had a heroin problem. Like so many before her, Cathy found a website that purported to supply independent advice about rehab programs. She didn’t know it was a front for Narconon, and was paid to direct people to the Scientology network. She was told that the price would be $33,000, and that she needed to get her son into the program as soon as possible or his life could be at stake.

Michael Tarr entered the program in May, and experienced many of the same things that Jack Welch went through, the plaintiff in the previous lawsuit.

Like Welch, Michael Tarr soon learned that he would be going through Scientology training, not drug counseling, and he would be instructed to take high doses of Niacin while sitting for hours a day in a sauna (the “Purification Rundown”), and with no medical personnel on hand. The complaint goes into considerable detail about the Scientology processes that patients were subjected to (as in the previous complaint).


New this time was the inclusion of some material from a deposition from the Patrick Desmond wrongful death lawsuit. In that suit, the Narconon facility near Atlanta (now closed) had an expert witness, Dr. Louis A. Casal, testify to the efficacy of the Purification Rundown, with disastrous results. The complaint quotes from the relevant portion of Casal’s testimony…

Q: Have you looked at the Narconon literature on what Narconon contends the benefits of the sauna are?

A: Yes, I have.

Q: And the sauna program, what Narconon contends is that in — it in fact detoxifies your body. True?

A: True.

Q: But there’s no scientific basis that you can point me to to support that contention, is there?

A: You’re correct.

Q: So when Narconon states that the sauna program detoxifies its students, you’re not aware, as a medical doctor, of any scientific basis for that contention?

A: I agree.

And remember, that was Narconon’s expert witness.

The complaint also refers to an internal Narconon e-mail, first reported here at the Underground Bunker, which reveals that a Narconon legal affairs officer admitted that there was no scientific evidence for the high success rates that the rehab network regularly advertises.

In fact, the complaint says, Michael Tarr relapsed and nearly died from an overdose almost immediately after leaving the Narconon program. The Tarrs are suing for breach of contract, fraud, and negligence.

Take a look at the complaint and give us your thoughts…


Tarr v Narconon Fresh Start: Complaint


The Scientology grand re-openings in California have a theme song!

We were leaked a happy, upbeat tune that is the official theme song of Scientology’s grand re-openings going on this weekend in Los Angeles. We thought it would be even better with some visuals. We hope you enjoy this latest catchy tune from the church…


We told you previously that the Scientology Test Center (being redubbed the Scientology Life Improvement Center) was getting its ceremony on Friday evening, and that the big shindig for ASHO and AOLA at PAC base would happen during the day on Saturday.

But that was before it had become obvious that a historic storm was on its way to Southern California from Thursday to Saturday.

Now we’re hearing that things may get pushed back a little so it won’t rain on David Miscavige’s parade. For now, we’re hearing that ASHO and AOLA will get the ribbon-cutting at 2 pm on Sunday, and the Test Center on Hollywood Boulevard will have its party on Monday at 6:30 pm. Please, if you plan on attending, treat those as tentative schedules.

In the meantime, our friend Mark Ebner was at Big Blue yesterday and spotted a crew taking out trees. We told him that’s pretty standard for Scientology, which likes to remove the plants for crowd shots with their wide-angle camera lenses to make the attendance look bigger…


Also, for the Test Center on (perhaps) Monday night, Scientology has asked for substantial street closures. Here’s the map (which was for Friday, but again we think the event will get moved)…



Posted by Tony Ortega on February 26, 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.

Learn about Scientology with our numerous series with experts…

BLOGGING DIANETICS (We read Scientology’s founding text) 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25

UP THE BRIDGE (Claire Headley and Bruce Hines train us as Scientologists) 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35, 36, 37, 38, 39, 40, 41, 42

GETTING OUR ETHICS IN (Jefferson Hawkins explains Scientology’s system of justice) 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14

SCIENTOLOGY MYTHBUSTING (Historian Jon Atack discusses key Scientology concepts) 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35, 36, 37, 38, 39, 40, 41, 42

PZ Myers reads L. Ron Hubbard’s “A History of Man” | Scientology’s Master Spies | Scientology’s Private Dancer


Share Button
Print Friendly, PDF & Email