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MASTERSON: Scientology wants Bobette Riales dismissed, others forced into arbitration

[Bobette Riales and the Hollywood Celebrity Centre]

Back on December 13, we broke the news that Scientology was planning to force some of the former Scientologists suing Danny Masterson into “religious arbitration” as a way of killing their lawsuit.

“This is the purpose of Scientology’s ‘Fair Game’ policy, to obstruct justice, to waste the court’s time, and to further victimize the victims of Scientology. It’s bullshit and I’m tired of it,” Leah Remini told us for that story.

Yesterday, news that Scientology was trying to force Masterson’s accusers into religious arbitration became big news, with the Hollywood Reporter, the Daily Mail, Fox News, and even the Drudge Report getting in on it as a slew of new documents were filed by Scientology in the case.

Masterson himself has asked for more time to answer the lawsuit, and his attorney indicated that the Scientologist actor would be filing a “demurrer,” a kind of legal move that objects to a lawsuit on points of law rather than on its allegations.

We got a possible preview of what might be in Masterson’s demurrer, because Scientology filed one against one of the five plaintiffs in the case, Bobette Riales. We have that filing for you, as well as several others, and we’re looking forward to your observations about them.

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The lawsuit was filed this summer by four women who allege that they were raped by Masterson in incidents between 2001 and 2004, and then more recently were harassed by the Church of Scientology and its leader David Miscavige when they came forward with their allegations to the Los Angeles Police Department. (Also suing is rocker Cedric Bixler-Zavala, who is married to one of the women, Chrissie Carnell Bixler, alleging that he too was harmed by the harassment since Chrissie came forward.)

We already know that the Scientology entities named in the suit have refused to acknowledge service, calling the attempts to serve them “fraudulent” and asking for sanctions.

And now, the Church of Scientology International (and the Hollywood Celebrity Centre) has filed its promised motions to compel four of the plaintiffs into Scientology’s internal “religious arbitration” just as it has in another lawsuit, brought by former Miscavige steward Valerie Haney.

Chrissie Carnell Bixler, her husband Cedric Bixler-Zavala, and Jane Does 1 and 2 (whom we refer to as Victim B and Victim C) were all former Scientologists, and the church has now submitted copies of contracts they each signed in the past — contracts which contain language promising to take any grievances to arbitration rather than to a court of law.

Scientology is attempting to repeat the success it had with a 2013 lawsuit, forcing a California couple, Luis and Rocio Garcia, into its internal religious arbitration after the Garcias accused the church of defrauding them when it convinced them to make large donations. A Tampa federal judge agreed with Scientology that because the Garcias had repeatedly signed “religious” contracts, the court couldn’t intervene or even review the church’s internal justice procedures without violating Scientology’s religious rights — even though Scientology admitted it had never held a “religious arbitration” in its existence, and despite testimony from former top executives that the contracts were a sham.

As Lawrence Wright pointed out in the HBO movie Going Clear, because of the 1993 decision by the IRS to grant Scientology tax exempt status as a religious organization, its First Amendment armor is very sturdy. “The church is protected,” Wright said.

CSI and the Celebrity Centre have asked for hearings on their motions to compel arbitration against Jane Doe 2 on March 25, and the other three on March 24.

But with Riales, Scientology has a different problem. Bobette was never a Scientologist. So instead, the church is coming at her with a demurrer, calling her allegations weak and also accusing her of joining a lawsuit she has no business being a part of.

It’s interesting to see the specific arguments in this document because Danny Masterson himself won’t be able to make an arbitration argument, and he’s indicated that he will also file a demurrer.

CSI’s demurrer starts out by asking for a hearing on March 18. It then takes aim at Riales’s allegations of being harassed by the church.

Plaintiff Marie Bobette Riales alleges in the Complaint that certain events have happened in her life: trash stolen, persons loitering in front of her house, computer difficulties, a shattered window. Most people understand these annoyances to be the price of modern, urban life. Plaintiff, on the other hand, charges that these commonplace events are part of a vast campaign against her by prominent religious organizations and the ecclesiastical leader of a religion. That argument is false and malicious.

Bobette alleges that the harassment has been done at the direction of Miscavige and the church without any proof, the document continues.

But besides that, the document says, Bobette’s experiences are different than the others and she doesn’t belong in a lawsuit with them. Because of this, her lawsuit should be dismissed, the church says…

The Complaint’s lack of supporting facts and law is not even its biggest defect. The Complaint improperly joins Plaintiff Riales’ claims with those of four other plaintiffs. Yet, the claims are premised on entirely distinct and separate acts — allegedly occurring at different times and in different locations. Because the claims do not arise from the same transaction or series of transactions, they cannot be pleaded jointly. Moe v. Anderson, 207 Cal. App. 4th 826, 833 (2012). Thus the Complaint in its current form cannot be cured by amendment and must be dismissed.

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This document is written by attorney William Forman who, we saw earlier, tends to make sneering accusations about the other side before getting to the point legally, which we suspect is done for the benefit of Scientology leader David Miscavige.

Forman writes that Riales should be dropped from the suit because she’s trying to prove separate incidents that happened at separate times from the other plaintiffs…

Each Plaintiff thus pleads separate and particular acts of harassment were directed to each individually, and each bears the burden of proving that these acts happened: Plaintiff Bixler showing that she was “harassed” at a hair salon does not absolve Plaintiff Riales of her burden to show she was taunted at a restaurant. Yet these distinct and separate acts form the basis of Plaintiffs’ jointly-pleaded claims.

And the church would argue this same point about the other plaintiffs, but instead it’s heading them off with the arbitration gambit…

While this is a defect with the claims of all Plaintiffs, CSI and CC have moved to compel arbitration as to the remaining Plaintiffs, and CSI and CC only demur
to Plaintiff Riales’ claims at this time.

Forman then argues that because Riales hasn’t presented any evidence that the church is behind these incidents of harassment, then she really has no legal claim to make against them.

The only person she does accuse by name is a Scientologist named Kathy Gold, who has made various accusations about Masterson’s accusers online. But there’s no proof that Gold is acting on behalf of the church…

Plainly, that a person is a member of a religion does not establish that all actions performed by that person were “at the direction” of the religious institution. For instance, if a Catholic is the party at fault in an automobile crash, the injured party cannot allege a claim against the Catholic Church by stating that the culpable driver is a Catholic.

Take a look at the document itself and let us know what stands out for you:

Bixler vs. Scientology: CSI and CC demurrer to Bobette Riales

 
As for the motions to compel arbitration against Chrissie Carnell Bixler, her husband Cedric Bixler-Zavala, and Jane Does 1 and 2, we’ll also post the supporting documentation, which includes copies of the “religious” contracts they signed as church members.

We note, for example, that in the case of Victim B, who got so much auditing at Celebrity Centre to convince her that she had done something bad in a previous life explaining why she was victimized in this one, the church submitted only a 2002 contract at the Flag Land Base that wasn’t signed by any church official.

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Victim B’s attorneys should be able to make mincemeat of that document, and so we’re wondering why Scientology would even bother to submit it. What’s the angle?

 
CSI motion to compel arbitration against Chrissie Carnell Bixler, Cedric Bixler-Zavala, and Jane Doe 1
CSI motion to compel arbitration against Jane Doe 2

Declaration of Margaret Marmolejo (includes religious contracts signed by plaintiffs)
Declaration of Sarah Heller (includes Flag contract signed by Victim B/Jane Doe 1)

 
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Source Code

“This FBI man wanted his fortune told. So I waxed up my mustaches and readjusted the bath towel, said, ‘I see you working on a case.’ A very intelligent remark to an FBI man. Said, a case which is very, very confidential. Case number 132678.’ I said, ‘The man you want isn’t there.’ I said, ‘That’s all. Next.’ This guy goes off, and he starts figuring this out. And you could see this, you know; trying to clear this up. How did I know the number of a confidential case? Because it was the right number. Naturally it was the right number; he had the case card right in front of his face in a facsimile, and all you did was read the numbers in the upper left-hand corner.” — L. Ron Hubbard, January 9, 1957

 
——————–

Overheard in the FreeZone

“Hubbard mentioned Pain-Drug-Hypnosis, the Pilot mentioned Sex-Drug-Hypnosis, could we now be in the era of the now-we-live-inside-an-antenna-farm-based EDH where the EMF fields are being broadcast for the specific purpose of keying in specific phenomena in the body and/or the thetan’s vias? I believe I once read a quote of Captain Bill Robertson mentioning this phenomenon somewhere in the Ron’s Org material but I haven’t been able to find the reference. Its well known that a real, verified security clearance is required of any and all employees allowed to enter those fenced ground facilities at the base of the cell towers.”

 
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Random Howdy

“I’ve never ever really been worried about a Scientology Jonestown. There’s no apocalyptic scripture and it’s too much about the money, and the participants are way too yuppie white bread for something like that.”

 
——————–

Start making your plans…

 
Head over to the convention website and meet us in St. Louis!

 
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Scientology’s celebrities, ‘Ideal Orgs,’ and more!

[Jenna Elfman, Giovanni Ribisi, and Greta Van Susteren]

We’ve been building landing pages about David Miscavige’s favorite playthings, including celebrities and ‘Ideal Orgs,’ and we’re hoping you’ll join in and help us gather as much information as we can about them. Head on over and help us with links and photos and comments.

Scientology’s celebrities, from A to Z! Find your favorite Hubbardite celeb at this index page — or suggest someone to add to the list!

Scientology’s ‘Ideal Orgs,’ from one end of the planet to the other! Help us build up pages about each these worldwide locations!

Scientology’s sneaky front groups, spreading the good news about L. Ron Hubbard while pretending to benefit society!

Scientology Lit: Books reviewed or excerpted in our weekly series. How many have you read?

 
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THE WHOLE TRACK

[ONE year ago] Scientology slimes ‘Aftermath’ guest with its favorite tactic: The P.O.W. video
[TWO years ago] ‘It was my job to get Mike Rinder’s trash’ — A former Scientology spy begins to spill her guts
[THREE years ago] L. Ron Hubbard’s writing about women that Scientology DOES want you to see!
[FOUR years ago] ‘Archetypical newshound’ Paulette Cooper described in ‘thrilling account’ — Kirkus
[FIVE years ago] Full Forrest Ackerman interview from 1997 ‘Secret Lives’ film released for first time
[SIX years ago] Jeff Hawkins: How Scientology’s ‘Third Party Law’ explains anything they want it to
[SEVEN years ago] Excerpts of Lawrence Wright’s Book on Scientology are Predictably Awesome
[EIGHT years ago] Scientology: Secrets of the Super Power Building

 
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Scientology disconnection, a reminder

Bernie Headley (1952-2019) did not see his daughter Stephanie in his final 5,667 days.
Valerie Haney has not seen her mother Lynne in 1,812 days.
Katrina Reyes has not seen her mother Yelena in 2,316 days
Sylvia Wagner DeWall has not seen her brother Randy in 1,836 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his grandson Leo in 856 days.
Geoff Levin has not seen his son Collin and daughter Savannah in 747 days.
Christie Collbran has not seen her mother Liz King in 4,054 days.
Clarissa Adams has not seen her parents Walter and Irmin Huber in 1,922 days.
Carol Nyburg has not seen her daughter Nancy in 2,696 days.
Jamie Sorrentini Lugli has not seen her father Irving in 3,470 days.
Quailynn McDaniel has not seen her brother Sean in 2,816 days.
Dylan Gill has not seen his father Russell in 11,382 days.
Melissa Paris has not seen her father Jean-Francois in 7,301 days.
Valeska Paris has not seen her brother Raphael in 3,469 days.
Mirriam Francis has not seen her brother Ben in 3,050 days.
Claudio and Renata Lugli have not seen their son Flavio in 3,311 days.
Sara Goldberg has not seen her daughter Ashley in 2,349 days.
Lori Hodgson has not seen her son Jeremy and daughter Jessica in 2,062 days.
Marie Bilheimer has not seen her mother June in 1,587 days.
Charley Updegrove has not seen his son Toby in 1,114 days.
Joe Reaiche has not seen his daughter Alanna Masterson in 5,677 days
Derek Bloch has not seen his father Darren in 2,817 days.
Cindy Plahuta has not seen her daughter Kara in 3,137 days.
Roger Weller has not seen his daughter Alyssa in 7,993 days.
Claire Headley has not seen her mother Gen in 3,112 days.
Ramana Dienes-Browning has not seen her mother Jancis in 1,467 days.
Mike Rinder has not seen his son Benjamin and daughter Taryn in 5,770 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his daughter Spring in 1,876 days.
Skip Young has not seen his daughters Megan and Alexis in 2,278 days.
Mary Kahn has not seen her son Sammy in 2,150 days.
Lois Reisdorf has not seen her son Craig in 1,733 days.
Phil and Willie Jones have not seen their son Mike and daughter Emily in 2,228 days.
Mary Jane Barry has not seen her daughter Samantha in 2,482 days.
Kate Bornstein has not seen her daughter Jessica in 13,591 days.

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Posted by Tony Ortega on January 9, 2020 at 07:00

E-mail tips to tonyo94 AT gmail DOT com or follow us on Twitter. We also post updates at our Facebook author page. After every new story we send out an alert to our e-mail list and our FB page.

Our new book with Paulette Cooper, Battlefield Scientology: Exposing L. Ron Hubbard’s dangerous ‘religion’ is now on sale at Amazon in paperback and Kindle formats. Our book about Paulette, The Unbreakable Miss Lovely: How the Church of Scientology tried to destroy Paulette Cooper, is on sale at Amazon in paperback, Kindle, and audiobook versions. We’ve posted photographs of Paulette and scenes from her life at a separate location. Reader Sookie put together a complete index. More information can also be found at the book’s dedicated page.

The Best of the Underground Bunker, 1995-2018 Just starting out here? We’ve picked out the most important stories we’ve covered here at the Underground Bunker (2012-2018), The Village Voice (2008-2012), New Times Los Angeles (1999-2002) and the Phoenix New Times (1995-1999)

Other links: BLOGGING DIANETICS: Reading Scientology’s founding text cover to cover | 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 | Shelly Miscavige, 14 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 | The mystery of the richest Scientologist and his wayward sons | Scientology’s shocking mistreatment of the mentally ill | The Underground Bunker’s Official Theme Song | The Underground Bunker FAQ

Watch our short videos that explain Scientology’s controversies in three minutes or less…

Check your whale level at our dedicated page for status updates, or join us at the Underground Bunker’s Facebook discussion group for more frivolity.

Our non-Scientology stories: Robert Burnham Jr., the man who inscribed the universe | Notorious alt-right inspiration Kevin MacDonald and his theories about Jewish DNA | The selling of the “Phoenix Lights” | Astronomer Harlow Shapley‘s FBI file | Sex, spies, and local TV news | Battling Babe-Hounds: Ross Jeffries v. R. Don Steele

 

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