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


Here’s the full appeal petition in the lawsuit against Danny Masterson and Scientology

[Chrissie and Cedric]

Last week we told you that Chrissie Carnell-Bixler and her fellow plaintiffs had filed a petition with an appeals court in an attempt to reverse the ruling that forced their harassment lawsuit against Danny Masterson and the Church of Scientology into Scientology’s internal brand of “religious arbitration.”

Then, on Friday we told you that the appellate court had responded to the petition by putting Scientology’s arbitration on hold while they consider the document. We judged that was a good sign for Chrissie’s case, but we cautioned that it’s still uncommon for the appeals court to grant a writ at this stage. It’s still an uphill battle they’re fighting to get that decision in the lower court reversed.

In last week’s story we quoted from the petition for you, but now we are posting the entire document, and we want to get your thoughts on it.

Again, we want to point out that the court placed a stay on the case and that’s a good sign. But we’ve also been told that the appeals court is especially picky about these things, and so we’re interested in how well this document presents itself. And we’re looking forward to your thoughts on it.

When this legal team filed a similar petition on behalf of Valerie Haney, they brought in a specialist, an appellate attorney named Valerie McGinty, whose petition seemed pretty knockout great. But there was one big problem, it turned out. The legal team had filed it too late, and the petition was summarily rejected with hardly a notice from the court except that they had waited too long.


This time, it’s the legal team’s Bobby Thompson who has written the petition, and it appears to contain some very strong arguments. But there is a puzzling line in the opening paragraph.

Petitioners in this case are victims of violent sexual assault and rape by Defendant Daniel Masterson (with the exception of Petitioner Bixler-Zavala who is the husband of Petitioner Carnell-Bixler) on various occasions. Petitioners Carnell-Bixler, Jane Doe #1, and Jane Doe #2, are former Scientologists; Petitioners Bixler-Zavala have never been members of the Church of Scientology.

It appears to indicate that Chrissie and Cedric are now saying they weren’t members, and it was apparently a slight error and what was meant was that Cedric doesn’t consider himself a former member since he took only a single course.

There’s definitely always been some issue about what entails “membership” in the Church of Scientology, and we still remember Janet Reitman putting it so well in her 2011 book Inside Scientology — that the church itself counts just about anyone who so much as buys a book to be a Scientologist, and so she observed humorously that buying a single copy of Dianetics had probably put her on the membership rolls forever.

Are you a member if you only take a single course but never sign up for inclusion in the church’s membership organization, the International Association of Scientologists? It’s an interesting question.

The petition then gets into describing the insanity these plaintiffs now find themselves in. They were suing because, they claimed, Masterson and Scientology were harassing them and re-victimizing them after they came forward to the LAPD with their allegations of rape by Masterson in incidents between 2001 and 2003 (allegations for which Masterson is now facing 45 years to life in prison for in a separate criminal prosecution). But Judge Steven Kleifield of the Los Angeles Superior Court found that because they had signed contracts for religious services while in the church, four of the five plaintiffs don’t have a right to trial and now must take their grievances to the church’s internal arbitration, where Masterson himself may also participate.

in violation of Petitioners’ First Amendment and California constitutional right to freedom of religion and their California constitutional rights under Marsy’s Law which guaranty specific rights to crime victims like Petitioners, the trial court ordered that they submit to “Religious Services Arbitration,” which is controlled by the Church and is being wielded as a sword to re-traumatize these rape victims. Accordingly, writ relief is warranted.

Yeah, it sure seems like some kind of relief is warranted, that’s for sure.

Please go through the document and give us your observations. It sure seems like these women cannot go through with the arbitration they’ve been forced into without jeopardizing the criminal case and violating their own rights. Surely the appellate court must step in, right?

Here’s the document:


Bixler v. Scientology: Appe… by Tony Ortega



Source Code

“Scientology has various ends. Out of Scientology you could formulate, for instance, a very fine type of ‘thought warfare’ which — much better than an atom bomb. No, an atom bomb just kills people — but you could take in ‘thought warfare,’ you could enslave them utterly. You could, you’d make complete slaves out of them, with a very simple contraption. Very simple. We’re doing it the honest way in Scientology, because with a very simple contraption, with the greatest of ease, we could go around and anybody who was opposing Scientology would all of a sudden start being madly, insanely in favor of it. But that’s the easy way to do it, and that’s what’s wrong with the race, is everybody has tried it the easy way — control, restraint, more engrams, more punishment.” — L. Ron Hubbard, March 3, 1952


Avast, Ye Mateys

“From the inspection of the ship for sea, the decks, bridge, Commodore’s and Aides areas, E/R, most Div III area, Tweendecks, and interior areas looks good. The most glaring outnesses were in personal cabins and a few unsecured items in office area. The MAA has the list and all is to be ready by 0900 for his further inspection. Each crew member in his own time will thoroughly clean his cabin for an inspection tomorrow at sea. Well it will be good to get to sea. After the all hands, Watch E will take her out. Lets have a great trip and bring home the bacon!” — Capt. W.B. Robertson, Capt. Yacht Apollo, (1970)


Overheard in the FreeZone

“It’s time to challenge the 60-year-old cliché about DNA as the blueprint of the body. It’s more like a list of the proteins that the cell will produce in response to various cues, either internal or external. There might also be a distinction between the engrams of the GE and those owned by the thetan. Looking from the top down, from the thetan’s viewpoint, an engram is just a section of the time track that he isn’t taking responsibility for creating. But looking from the other direction, the GE holds engrams as valuable for building structure. And from early Dianetics up to his research on effort processing, L. Ron Hubbard was addressing the GE. The organism is the mind of the GE, a mind that records action – counter-effort and effort – rather than thought. I think biology is starting to reject the view of organisms as machines built to rigid plans, in favour of considering them more like analog computers that respond to an array of external counter-efforts with efforts ‘calculated’ to maximise their survival.”


Past is Prologue


1997: Critics of Scientology descended on Clearwater to protest Scientology, and the death of Lisa McPherson. Protesters were mobbed by Scientologists carrying counter-protest signs at the protest. Scientologists at the vigil crowded the sidewalk and blew out vigil candles. From UPI: “Tension appears to be mounting in Clearwater, evidenced by a weekend protest against the Church of Scientology. Saturday, some 30 placard- carrying protesters were outnumbered 10 to one by Scientologists outside their Fort Harrison Hotel headquarters. The protesters were there on behalf of Lisa McPherson, who died in the care of church members. Her death is being investigated by Clearwater police. Family members claim there are suspicious circumstances surrounding her death, while Scientologists allege the police are on a witch hunt.”


Random Howdy

“Seeing as how boxers get knocked out more than any other group, RTC is missing a golden opportunity to prove the efficacy of Dianetic theory by grabbing some punch-drunk pugilist off of Skid Row and giving him six months of auditing and then calling a press conference where the former rummy could recite Shakespeare and explain quantum theory to all present. Why doesn’t C.O.B. think of these things?”


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

Criminal prosecutions:
Danny Masterson charged for raping three women: Masterson arraigned Jan 20. Next conf to set prelim, March 24.
Jay and Jeff Spina, Medicare fraud: Jay’s sentencing delayed to April 13.
Hanan and Rizza Islam and other family members, Medi-Cal fraud: Trial scheduled for May 20 in Los Angeles
David Gentile, GPB Capital, fraud: Charged in Brooklyn federal court on Feb 4. Arraigned on Feb 9. Pretrial conference set for Apr 29.

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 writ of mandate denied Oct 22 by Cal 2nd Appellate District. Petition for review by state supreme court denied Dec 11.
Chrissie Bixler et al. v. Scientology and Danny Masterson: Dec 30, Judge Kleifield granted Scientology’s motions to compel arbitration. March 8: Status conference.
Matt and Kathy Feschbach tax debt: Eleventh Circuit ruled on Sept 9 that Feshbachs can’t discharge IRS debt in bankruptcy. Dec 17: Feshbachs sign court judgment obliging them to pay entire $3.674 million tax debt, plus interest from Nov 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, Cannane victorious, awarded court costs. Case appealed on Dec 24.

Concluded litigation:
Dennis Nobbe, Medicare fraud, PPP loan fraud: Charged July 29. Bond revoked Sep 14. Nobbe dead, Sep 14.
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.


SCIENTOLOGY BLACK OPS: Tom Cruise and dirty tricks

The Australian Seven News network cancelled a 10-part investigation of Scientology and its history of dirty tricks. Read the transcripts of the episodes and judge for yourself why Tom Cruise and Tommy Davis might not have wanted viewers to see this hard-hitting series by journalist Bryan Seymour.


After the success of their double-Emmy-winning, three-season A&E series ‘Scientology and the Aftermath,’ Leah Remini and Mike Rinder continue the conversation on their podcast, ‘Scientology: Fair Game.’ We’ve created a landing page where you can hear all of the episodes so far.


An episode-by-episode guide to Leah Remini’s three-season, double-Emmy winning series that changed everything for Scientology watching. Originally aired from 2016 to 2019 on the A&E network, and now on Netflix.


Find your favorite Hubbardite celeb at this index page — or suggest someone to add to the list!

Other links: Scientology’s Ideal Orgs, from one end of the planet to the other. 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 a weekly series. How many have you read?



[ONE year ago] Expert: Scientology’s Grant Cardone ‘helping sell fake stem cell products to the public’
[TWO years ago] Scientology claims to be the experts on drugs — their actual materials beg to differ
[THREE years ago] Garcias ask for hearing on farcical ‘arbitration’; Scientology files 600 pages in Laura D case
[FIVE years ago] Scientology, in forced-abortion case: It’s not abuse if you don’t complain when it’s happening
[SIX years ago] How’s this for a gift on L. Ron Hubbard’s birthday? ‘Going Clear’ in theaters March 13
[SEVEN years ago] John Travolta’s fun night at the Oscars
[EIGHT years ago] Sunday Funnies: Get Your Infant Audited!


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 2,229 days.
Katrina Reyes has not seen her mother Yelena in 2,733 days
Sylvia Wagner DeWall has not seen her brother Randy in 2,253 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his grandson Leo in 1,273 days.
Geoff Levin has not seen his son Collin and daughter Savannah in 1,164 days.
Christie Collbran has not seen her mother Liz King in 4,471 days.
Clarissa Adams has not seen her parents Walter and Irmin Huber in 2,339 days.
Carol Nyburg has not seen her daughter Nancy in 3,113 days.
Jamie Sorrentini Lugli has not seen her father Irving in 3,917 days.
Quailynn McDaniel has not seen her brother Sean in 3,233 days.
Dylan Gill has not seen his father Russell in 11,799 days.
Melissa Paris has not seen her father Jean-Francois in 7,718 days.
Valeska Paris has not seen her brother Raphael in 3,886 days.
Mirriam Francis has not seen her brother Ben in 3,467 days.
Claudio and Renata Lugli have not seen their son Flavio in 3,728 days.
Sara Goldberg has not seen her daughter Ashley in 2,766 days.
Lori Hodgson has not seen her son Jeremy and daughter Jessica in 2,479 days.
Marie Bilheimer has not seen her mother June in 2,004 days.
Julian Wain has not seen his brother Joseph or mother Susan in 359 days.
Charley Updegrove has not seen his son Toby in 1,534 days.
Joe Reaiche has not seen his daughter Alanna Masterson in 6,085 days
Derek Bloch has not seen his father Darren in 3,234 days.
Cindy Plahuta has not seen her daughter Kara in 3,554 days.
Roger Weller has not seen his daughter Alyssa in 8,409 days.
Claire Headley has not seen her mother Gen in 3,528 days.
Ramana Dienes-Browning has not seen her mother Jancis in 1,884 days.
Mike Rinder has not seen his son Benjamin and daughter Taryn in 6,187 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his daughter Spring in 2,293 days.
Skip Young has not seen his daughters Megan and Alexis in 2,695 days.
Mary Kahn has not seen her son Sammy in 2,567 days.
Lois Reisdorf has not seen her son Craig in 2,150 days.
Phil and Willie Jones have not seen their son Mike and daughter Emily in 2,645 days.
Mary Jane Barry has not seen her daughter Samantha in 2,899 days.
Kate Bornstein has not seen her daughter Jessica in 14,008 days.


Posted by Tony Ortega on March 3, 2021 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, 1995-2020 Just starting out here? We’ve picked out the most important stories we’ve covered here at the Underground Bunker (2012-2020), 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, 15 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


Share Button
Print Friendly, PDF & Email