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New in court docs: Scientology bashes victims’ rights group, trashes Mike Rinder

[RTC lawyer Matthew Hinks, and Mike Rinder]

Last week, we reported that Valerie Haney had filed a petition with a California appellate court, asking for a writ so she could appeal the ruling by a Los Angeles Superior Court judge who derailed her lawsuit in favor of Scientology’s internal “religious arbitration.”

Valerie had told us that she was against the idea of submitting to what is essentially a religious ritual in a church she no longer belongs to, and now she wants an opportunity to argue that before an appeals court.

However, at this stage she can only get that appeal if she is granted the writ, which rarely happens. But bolstering her chances are a couple of “friend of the court” letters (amicus curiae briefs) filed by two victims’ right groups that are urging the California 2nd Appellate District to give Valerie an appeal.

The first of those two groups is the National Center on Sexual Exploitation (NCOSE), which submitted a detailed, compelling letter putting Valerie’s case in the context of someone who had been subjected to a lifetime of coercion and control. Scientology responded by taking the unusual move of filing their own amicus reply, saying that NCOSE should butt out of a case it has nothing to do with.

The second group was the National Crime Victim Bar Association, which said that Haney shouldn’t be forced to sit before a panel of Scientologists because she was convinced to sign an agreement under coercion…


As part of its tactics to control and manipulate Ms. Haney, CSI procured her signature on numerous documents, several of which mandated binding religious arbitration for all disputes arising between Ms. Haney and CSI before a panel of committed Scientologists. Compelled religious arbitration in cases arising from intentional tortious acts violates public policy, and agreements that purport to require it are unenforceable.

In both letters, these genuine victims’ rights groups are portraying Scientology as manipulative and abusive, despite Scientology’s strategy of using front groups to pretend that it’s actually a champion of human rights.

Now, Scientology has filed yet another amicus reply to the NCVBA’s friend of the court letter, and it’s as pugnacious as its other filings. We knew you’d want to see it.

This time, Scientology attacks the NCVBA for submitting the amicus brief by saying that it’s actually an operation being orchestrated by Haney’s attorneys, who are led by Philadelphia-based lawyer Brian Kent.

The letter brief submitted by the National Crime Victim Bar Association (“NCVBA”) is not an amicus brief: it is nothing more than a cynical attempt by Petitioners’ lawyers to submit a second brief raising issues not properly before this Court. NCVBA is an ally of Petitioner’s attorneys; it is no “friend of the court.” Moreover, this case has nothing to do with NCVBA’s purported interests. As noted below, this case arises out of Petitioner’s time as a volunteer member of a religious order serving on the staffs of Real Parties. No “crime” has been committed and nobody has been charged with a crime, much less convicted of one. NCVBA claims to be an association of attorneys and expert witnesses who represent crime victims. Among its Advisory Board is Petitioner’s lawyer, Brian Kent from the Laffey, Bucci & Kent law firm in Philadelphia. Another one of Petitioner’s lawyers, Jeffrey Fritz of the Soloff & Zervanos law firm, also in Philadelphia, is a charter member of NCVBA, also a member of NCVBA’s Advisory Board, as well as a past President of the organization. Yet another one of Petitioner’s lawyers, Guy D’Andrea, also from the Laffey, Bucci & Kent law firm, is the Chair of NCVBA’s Young Lawyers Council. Mr. Kent, Mr. Fritz and Mr. D’Andrea all filed applications in the Superior Court in this case to appear pro hac vice and all appeared on the caption in documents filed by Petitioner in the Superior Court, including her opposition to Real Parties’ motions to compel arbitration.

We’re shocked, shocked, that Valerie Haney’s attorneys know people and stuff.

Anyway, we have the full document for you below. But that’s not all we have for you in the way of Scientology litigation. This week a new declaration came in from former Scientology spokesman Mike Rinder, who was helping out with the lawsuit filed by Danny Masterson’s rape accusers.

If you remember, one of the things going on in that lawsuit is that Chrissie Carnell Bixler and the other plaintiffs are still, more than a year after they first filed the lawsuit, trying to get Scientology leader David Miscavige served and officially named a defendant. It’s come to the point that they’re asking Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Steven Kleifield for permission to serve Miscavige by publication as a last resort.

Part of their argument is that Scientology has been playing games, setting things up at the Hollywood Guaranty Building so that it’s extremely difficult to serve Miscavige, who has an office on the 11th floor. In his declaration Rinder says this is part of a long tradition in Scientology, where founder L. Ron Hubbard had established policies to make it hard for process servers to reach their intended targets.

There is an “attempted service of process” protocol that all personnel in Religious Technology Center, the Office of Special Affairs, security staff manning the front desk and ALL personnel working in that building are required to learn and follow in order to ensure David Miscavige is never served. Nobody is allowed to admit that David Miscavige is in the building, or that he is EVER in the building, or that he has been seen there at any time. All process servers or even someone asking questions are to be directed to the security guards at the 6331 Hollywood Blvd entrance. Those security guards, though responsible for the security of the Religious Technology Center offices are deliberately not employees of RTC to add a further layer of deniability concerning service of process.

Naturally, Scientology is unhappy that Mike Rinder is submitting something in the case, and RTC lawyer Matthew Hinks is in high dudgeon…

Mr. Rinder even lacks the proper foundation to speculate as to what would happen if the Plaintiffs ever attempted service. He states that he is a “former Scientologist” who was with the Church until the age of 52. He tellingly avoids saying when he left the Church. In a separate declaration filed with this Court, Michael Rinder admitted that he left the Church of Scientology 13 years ago in 2007. Since then, Mr. Rinder has devoted his life to 1) attempting to establish a “competitor” church to the Church of Scientology and, when that failed for lack of parishioners, 2) publicly criticizing the Church and its leadership through false and malicious attacks. But as Mr. Rinder has not been a part of Scientology for over 13 years, there is no foundation for any statement that Mr. Rinder makes with regard to the current practices. procedures, or Board of Defendant RTC. Furthermore, Mr. Rinder never states that he was an employee, officer, director, or otherwise ever held any position with RTC, thus all of his statements regarding RTC’s supposed practices, procedures, and the constitution of its Board are without foundation. In the end, all of Mr. Rinder’s statements regarding the supposed RTC procedures at 6331 Hollywood Boulevard and how they are designed to prevent service of Mr. Miscavige are speculation without foundation and irrelevant.

But wait! Hinks is just warming up…

Mr. Rinder also offers his opinion that, while Mr. Miscavige holds the title of Chairman of the Board of the RTC, this is just a “sham.” This absurd opinion is tantamount to answering “No” to the old line, “Is the Pope Catholic?” Anyone with any familiarity with Scientology knows that Mr. Miscavige is commonly known as the “Chairman of the Board RTC” and is the ecclesiastical leader of the Scientology religion.


So there!

Seriously, Scientology litigation is so fun, and David Miscavige is paying top dollar for this stuff. We’ll see on Monday whether Judge Kleifield agrees to allow Miscavige to be served by publication.

As for Valerie Haney’s petition, we’re watching the appellate court, and we’ve been told a decision might come fairly soon.

Here’s Scientology’s amicus response to the NCVBA’s friend of the court letter…

Haney v. Scientology: Amicu… by Tony Ortega

Here’s Mike Rinder’s declaration about the way Scientology shields David Miscavige from process servers…

Bixler v. Scientology: Rind… by Tony Ortega

And here’s Scientology’s objection to Mike Rinder continuing to draw breath…


Bixler v. Scientology: Obje… by Tony Ortega


Christie’s auctions L. Ron Hubbard letters

There’s an auction of L. Ron Hubbard letters going on at Christie’s, and it represents an odd confluence of things that are related to the Underground Bunker.

The objects on sale are from the estate of Mario Feninger (pictured), a musician who was the subject of one of our favorite stories from 2013, which told Feninger’s story from the perspective of one of his former piano students, playwright Allen Barton, who today runs the Beverly Hills Playhouse.

Feninger died at 94 in 2016, and his large collection of Hubbard and Scientology materials, and his music collections, are being offered by another familiar figure. Some of you might remember another of our favorite stories, this one from 2014, about Richie Acunto, the former insurance mogul, who had fallen on such hard times his Patron Laureate and other trophies were being offered in an eBay auction. That same seller contacted us to let us know he was offering the Mario Feninger items at Christie’s.

We turned to Feninger’s former student, Barton, for his thoughts on the sale.

It’s definitely strange to click through some of the photos and recognize items from that old rambling apartment on Ivar. It makes me wonder what happened at the end, what circumstances led to everything being packed into a storage facility that could then be purchased and auctioned? Time warp. Images. The two hours I spent once, circa 2006, running through a recital for both Mario and my other mentor Milton Katselas at Milton’s house, the two of them connecting with each other for the first time in decades while offering me feedback. If one thing can be said for Scientology, it is that it brought together some incredibly interesting and vivid personalities — as I look in the rearview mirror at that whole era receding in the distance, I shall try to hang on to the memories of good times with those people. Objects, rendered sterile and cold by the passing of their owner? Maybe not so much.


Sky’s the limit

[Sky Dayton]

Follow the bouncing ball.


1994: Scientologist Sky Dayton (Delphian School class of 1988) founds dial-up Internet service EarthLink. Some of the young company’s other top officials are also Scientologists, and many of the initial customers also belong to the church. Over time, as questions arise about the relationship between EarthLink and Scientology, the company distances itself from the church as it explodes in size.

2001: Evercore Ventures entrepreneur Austin Beutner is appointed to Earthlink’s board of directors. Evercore is also an investor in Dayton’s new wireless startup, Boingo Wireless, and Beutner becomes a director.

2009: Dayton is named Platinum Meritorious by Scientology for $2.5 million in cumulative donations to its membership organization, the IAS.

2011: Dayton co-hosts an event for Los Angeles Deputy Mayor Austin Beutner, who has launched an independent bid for mayor in the 2013 election. Dayton donates the maximum $1,000 to Beutner’s campaign, which is unsuccessful.

2015: Beutner is fired as publisher of the Los Angeles Times by the newspaper’s Chicago owners, marking a nadir in LA Times history under out-of-town ownership.

May 1, 2018: Beutner becomes the new superintendent of the Los Angeles Unified School District.

May 26, 2020: Sky Dayton’s new biotech venture SummerBio is first incorporated, intending to produce rapid Covid-19 testing.

Oct 1, 2020: The Los Angeles Times, where Beutner was formerly publisher, breaks the news that the LAUSD has awarded a no-bid contract good for nearly $50 million to Dayton’s four-month-old startup SummerBio to provide Covid-19 testing to the school district.

The 1,600-word story in the Los Angeles Times announcing the contract and examining Dayton’s past relationship with Beutner does not contain the word “Scientology.”



Source Code

“‘Be three feet back of your head.’ Please tell me why nobody ever said this in the last ump-thousand years. This is fantastic. Because 50 percent, at least, of the people who come in and sit down, I don’t care what their age is — something like this — you say, ‘Be three feet back of your head.’ Sometimes you get the reaction, ‘Why?’ ‘Well, it might be more comfortable outside.’ ‘Might be more comfortable outside! You mean people are inside their heads!’ You would be just amazed how often one gets that reaction. One girl I know was given 125 electric shocks because the psychiatrist found she was outside of her head. Too sane for him.” — L. Ron Hubbard, October 2, 1953



Overheard in the FreeZone

“Case in point was an LRH lecture where he found himself up in the Van Allen belt, so the Church of Scientology pulled it, telling Ted Koppel it’s no longer part of current Scientology to appease extant scientific data. With the more recent discoveries, are they going to reissue it? Same when LRH stated he nearly got run over by a train on Venus. No one is going to disagree there are no trains on Venus, but the lecture still nicely correlates and furnishes insight what goes with the case as LRH was about to unravel the implant data on the CC and OT II among other findings. To me, the lecture was a perfect delineation on the power of the case over one’s perceptions.”


Past is prologue

2001: E-mails were sent to Scientologists to update them on efforts to have Scientology’s volunteer ministers join the relief effort at the World Trade Centers in New York. “We are the only people on Earth with a workable technology for keeping people going to keep things going after the crash, after the attack, after the catastrophe, even after the Atomic War that will happen if enough people get to stomping on the War/Peace button. We, are the Auditors of Earth and its life forms. We, are the ministers to the people of Earth. Your families and friends, your fellow countrymen and countrywomen and all of the generations to come are depending on your knowing and being able to apply the full Technology of Dianetics and Scientology including Administrative and Ethics and Justice Tech, along with the Auditing Tech and the delivery of the bridge during times such as these, and the uncertain times to come. ARC, Dennis H. Clarke”


Random Howdy

“I’ve been in a ‘Is that all there is to Scientology?’ mood lately. It comes with the territory.”


Full Court Press: What we’re watching at the Underground Bunker

Criminal prosecutions:
Danny Masterson charged for raping three women: Demurrer filed by Masterson, arraignment delayed to October 19.
Jay and Jeff Spina, Medicare fraud: Jay’s sentencing is set for October 5 in White Plains, NY, but asking for a 3-week postponement. Jeffrey’s is set for October 24.
Hanan and Rizza Islam and other family members, Medi-Cal fraud: Next pretrial conference set for Jan 12 in Los Angeles
Dennis Nobbe, Medicare fraud, PPP loan fraud: Charged July 29. Bond revoked Sep 14. Nobbe dead, Sep 14.

Civil litigation:
Luis and Rocio Garcia v. Scientology: Oral arguments were heard on July 30 at the Eleventh Circuit
Valerie Haney v. Scientology: Forced to ‘religious arbitration.’ Petition for a writ of mandate filed with Cal 2nd Appellate District, Sept 10.
Chrissie Bixler et al. v. Scientology and Danny Masterson: Oct 5 (Serving Miscavige by publication), Oct 6 (CSI/RTC demurrer against Riales, Masterson demurrer), Oct 26 (motions to compel arbitration)
Jane Doe v. Scientology (in Miami): Jane Doe dismissed the lawsuit on May 15 after the Clearwater Police dropped their criminal investigation of her allegations.
Matt and Kathy Feschbach tax debt: Eleventh Circuit ruled on Sept 9 that Feshbachs can’t discharge IRS debt in bankruptcy. Update required in federal lawsuit on Oct 19.
Brian Statler Sr v. City of Inglewood: Second amended complaint filed, trial set for Nov 9, 2021.
Author Steve Cannane defamation trial: Trial concluded, awaiting verdict.


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

[Stacy Francis, Jason Dohring, and Anne Archer]

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?



[ONE year ago] Scientologists led away in handcuffs after stunning evidence of fraud heard in L.A. court
[TWO years ago] Clear body, wiped mind: Another woman comes forward about forced abortion in Scientology
[THREE years ago] Another Scientologist becomes instant star with Trump supporters, this time in Puerto Rico
[FOUR years ago] How Scientology plans to take over the world: By boring us to death, apparently
[FIVE years ago] An email that demonstrates how much Scientology loves going after the ‘evil psychs’
[SIX years ago] Q&A with Mike Rinder: Understanding the sudden changes at Scientology’s LA complex
[EIGHT years ago] Scientology’s Georgia Drug Rehab Hit with Double-Barreled Media Onslaught


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 2,077 days.
Katrina Reyes has not seen her mother Yelena in 2,581 days
Sylvia Wagner DeWall has not seen her brother Randy in 2,101 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his grandson Leo in 1,121 days.
Geoff Levin has not seen his son Collin and daughter Savannah in 1,012 days.
Christie Collbran has not seen her mother Liz King in 4,319 days.
Clarissa Adams has not seen her parents Walter and Irmin Huber in 2,187 days.
Carol Nyburg has not seen her daughter Nancy in 2,961 days.
Jamie Sorrentini Lugli has not seen her father Irving in 3,765 days.
Quailynn McDaniel has not seen her brother Sean in 3,081 days.
Dylan Gill has not seen his father Russell in 11,647 days.
Melissa Paris has not seen her father Jean-Francois in 7,566 days.
Valeska Paris has not seen her brother Raphael in 3,734 days.
Mirriam Francis has not seen her brother Ben in 3,315 days.
Claudio and Renata Lugli have not seen their son Flavio in 3,576 days.
Sara Goldberg has not seen her daughter Ashley in 2,614 days.
Lori Hodgson has not seen her son Jeremy and daughter Jessica in 2,327 days.
Marie Bilheimer has not seen her mother June in 1,852 days.
Charley Updegrove has not seen his son Toby in 1,382 days.
Joe Reaiche has not seen his daughter Alanna Masterson in 5,942 days
Derek Bloch has not seen his father Darren in 3,082 days.
Cindy Plahuta has not seen her daughter Kara in 3,402 days.
Roger Weller has not seen his daughter Alyssa in 8,257 days.
Claire Headley has not seen her mother Gen in 3,376 days.
Ramana Dienes-Browning has not seen her mother Jancis in 1,732 days.
Mike Rinder has not seen his son Benjamin and daughter Taryn in 6,035 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his daughter Spring in 2,141 days.
Skip Young has not seen his daughters Megan and Alexis in 2,543 days.
Mary Kahn has not seen her son Sammy in 2,415 days.
Lois Reisdorf has not seen her son Craig in 1,998 days.
Phil and Willie Jones have not seen their son Mike and daughter Emily in 2,493 days.
Mary Jane Barry has not seen her daughter Samantha in 2,747 days.
Kate Bornstein has not seen her daughter Jessica in 13,856 days.


Posted by Tony Ortega on October 2, 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, 1995-2019 Just starting out here? We’ve picked out the most important stories we’ve covered here at the Underground Bunker (2012-2019), 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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