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Another Riffer-ific salvo from Scientology leader David Miscavige in our legal roundup

David_Miscavige_IAS30aWe have several legal updates for you today, and we’ll start with the always entertaining Jeffrey K. Riffer, attorney for Church of Scientology leader David Miscavige.

You’ll remember that the colorful Riffer, known for his over-the-top threat letters to Vanity Fair and CNN in which he comes off sounding exasperated that anyone would question the godlike ecclesiastical awesomeness of his client, had submitted a salvo of outrage aimed at the National Association of Forensic Counselors, which is suing Miscavige and 81 other defendants in a massive civil lawsuit regarding the misuse of the NAFC’s trademarks and logos.

The NAFC filed its suit in federal court in Oklahoma, because that’s where Scientology has the flagship facility of its drug rehab network, Narconon, which, the suit alleges, fraudulently misused the NAFC’s credentialing certificates in order to make the Narconon system look more legitimate than it actually is. The NAFC calls it a massive conspiracy, with Miscavige lording over it all as the dictator of Scientology.

Miscavige had Riffer file a motion to dismiss, claiming that the church leader has nothing to do with Oklahoma. NAFC attorney David Keesling came back with a response reiterating Miscavige’s seat atop the Scientology organization, which runs the Oklahoma facility. And now, Riffer has come back with a reply that trashes Keesling’s deeply documented response. And, since it’s Riffer, we hear about Miscavige’s lofty status…

“The burden on Mr. Miscavige of litigating in Oklahoma is significant because he (a) is a California resident; (b) is the ecclesiastical leader of a world-wide religion; and (c) has no meaningful contacts with Oklahoma.”

…and now his very image is sacrosanct: In a footnote, Riffer appears outraged that the Facebook page for Keesling’s law firm would dare to link to one of our stories about the case which — the effrontery! — “has a picture of Mr. Miscavige, the ecclesiastical leader of the Scientology religion.” Here, see for yourself…

 
KeeslingLawFB

 
The very idea!

Anyway, we don’t know if this kind of hyperventilating goes over with federal judges, but we suppose we’ll soon find out. Here’s the document…

 

NAFC v. Scientology: David Miscavige reply in motion to dismiss

 
Meanwhile, you’ll remember that Scientology’s genius legal tactic was to have Clark Carr, president of Narconon International, file his own class-action lawsuit against the NAFC in Los Angeles Superior Court, claiming that the NAFC’s certifications are fraudulent. (After, that is, the church had spent years boasting in advertisements and websites that it had qualified for such certifications.)

Keesling had Carr’s lawsuit removed to federal court. According to the order issued by the Central District court of California, a hearing in the matter will be held on January 21.

We asked Keesling about it, and he said, “I really want to thank Clark Carr for giving me more than one opportunity to depose him.”

He didn’t sound very worried.

Also, Keesling filed a motion to dismiss Carr’s lawsuit. The motion lacks Riffer’s splenetics. Instead, it calmly points out that Carr was trying to get away with something by filing a suit against the NAFC in California without mentioning that he was being sued by the same outfit in federal court in Oklahoma. Tsk tsk.

 
Meanwhile, Las Vegas attorney Ryan Hamilton submitted an interesting document in a California federal case in October that we’re just now getting around to. We’ve been following the 24 lawsuits Hamilton has filed against Narconon in California, Nevada, and Colorado, accusing the rehab network of deceptive business practices.

In each case, Hamilton has sued a local rehab facility, as well as two Scientology umbrella groups, Narconon International (NI) and the Association for Better Living and Education (ABLE). In several of the cases, NI and ABLE have settled to get out of the suits, while the local facility fights on.

In this latest filing, from the Mowery v. Narconon Redwood Cliffs lawsuit, Hamilton notes that NI and ABLE are settling and will be removed as defendants. But then, the plan hit a snag…

“However, Redwood Cliffs’ counsel has not agreed to sign the stipulation of dismissal of ABLE and NI,” Hamilton writes, and he’s asking the court to order the dismissal on its own.

Our legal experts tell us what’s going on is that insurers who represent NI and ABLE are pushing to get out of these loser lawsuits, but that Scientology is still eager to fight them. That’s led to some strife between the insurers and Scientology, and we expect that it tends to favor Hamilton’s cause.

We also wonder about Scientology’s ability to get future insurance policies. For now, at least, the church seems to be doing all right. We hear, in fact, that one of the Narconon companies — California’s Narconon Fresh Start — just managed to pick up a a new policy. Makes you wonder what kind of company would be eager to insure a house on fire.

 
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Karen de la Carriere on going through Scientology’s internal justice

Last time, Karen discussed the “kangaroo courts” that Scientology members go through. Now, she talks about her own “committee of evidence.”

 

 
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Posted by Tony Ortega on December 2, 2014 at 07:00

E-mail your tips and story ideas to tonyo94@gmail.com 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, 43, 44, 45, 46, 47, 48

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, 43, 44, 45, 46, 47, 48, 49

PZ Myers reads L. Ron Hubbard’s “A History of Man” | Scientology’s Master Spies | Scientology’s Private Dancer
The Underground Bunker’s Official Theme Song | The Underground Bunker FAQ

 

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