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Day four of the Danny Masterson prelim: The arguments and a ruling!

[Mueller vs. Mesereau]

Well, it all comes down to this. We’re beginning a little later today, 10:30 am, but the testimony and cross-examining is finished, and now we’ll get to see Deputy DA Reinhold Mueller and defense attorney Tom Mesereau give their closing arguments.

But first, Judge Charlaine Olmedo explained, Mesereau will be filing a motion to dismiss on grounds that Mueller has not presented enough evidence to justify a trial. So she’ll deal with that first, and then we’ll get the closings, we think. And then we believe we’ll get a ruling today, although we suppose it’s possible that Judge Olmedo will take some time.

So we’ve seen three alleged victims, Jane Doe 1, Christina B., and Jane Doe 2. All three of them had some frightening details in common, a pattern suggesting a man who may have drugged women and then attacked them in physically violent ways.

In each case, Mesereau brought up what he considered inconsistencies between things they had said at different times, and he tested them on what they admitted were memories that were at points faulty, affected by alcohol or drugging.

It’s quite clear, based on his cross-examinations, that Mesereau will characterize these women as liars, as bitter ex-members of Masterson’s circle who are jealous of his success, and who haven’t been able to keep their stories straight.


But time and again the influence of the Church of Scientology has come up, and its mind-bending rules and policies helping to explain why these women were reluctant to come forward initially, and why they told only part of their stories depending on who was listening.

As we predicted, this preliminary hearing has been very bad for Scientology, and that will continue if a trial is held later this year. But will it? We anxiously await a ruling from Judge Olmedo, and we’ll tell what we learn about it as soon as we can.

Previous day reports here: Day 1, Day 2, Day 3.

New reports from today will appear here…

Hearing wraps up

We’re out after Judge Charlaine Olmedo ruled that Masterson should be held to answer, which means a trial will be coming.

She specifically cited Scientology as the reason that these women delayed their reporting and for inconsistencies in their story. Oh wow.

She set an arraignment date for June 7, and Danny will have to appear.

OK, so here are our notes on how things went this morning.

Danny arrived wearing a blue suit. He said hi to one of the attorneys who have been sitting in the back. We then heard her say to the woman next to her, “Everything looks good on him,” apparently a reference to what he was wearing.

In the family row we think Carol was there, and some others we didn’t recognize, but who had been there in previous days.

Sharon Appelbaum then gave the defense motion to dismiss. She explained that the preliminary hearing’s purpose is to weed out groundless charges. And in this case, she says, the three women have credibility problems.

First, the length of time since the incidents: Jane Doe 1, 18 years, Jane Doe 2, 17.5 years, and Christina B., 20 years.

Memories fade and memories change. And there was a delay in reporting. Jane Doe 1 waited more than a year to report to the LAPD, but she blamed Scientology for it. And then in 2017, Scientology is again blamed when the three of them come forward, but she points out that Jane Doe 2 had left Scientology in 2005. Why didn’t she report then?


She then goes through each case.

Jane Doe 1: She said she had consensual sex in Sept 2002, but later said it wasn’t consensual. The defense theory is that she was upset that “nothing came out of” the Sept 2002 incident, and that’s where the allegations in 2003 are coming from.

She’s suing for money. And as for collusion with the others, she thinks she’s part of a sisterhood wants to take down Danny Masterson and the Church of Scientology.

Her allegation about the gun: Nowhere in early reports. And the LAPD would take a gun during rape very seriously, it’s not something police would leave out of a report. There was nothing about a gun in the Knowledge Report she wrote in 2003 for Scientology.

As for going to his house that night, she claimed that she had no plans to go out that night and was trying to get things done to help Brie Shaffer go to the airport in the morning when she ended up at Masterson’s house. But if that was true, why was she wearing Gucci pants?

In Florida, why didn’t anyone see her bruises? She said she first told her cousin Rachel about the rape, but later said she told Shaun Fabos. Inconsistent.

She told the Church of Scientology she had poured her drink, but later didn’t remember who poured it.

She blames her delay in reporting on Scientology, but in the Introduction to Scientology Ethics book, the chapter that Mr. Mueller cited yesterday is not a policy. It is written as a hope for the future. It’s a description of sort of a utopia. Scientology is not anti-police.

(At this moment we felt like we were in bizarro world, with Appelbaum trying to explain Scientology hopes and dreams. Um, wow.)

She cited a line about how a suppressive act includes a felony. But we noted that this still doesn’t mean reporting to the police. We figured Mueller would point that out.

She then brought up the IJC’s letter to Jane Doe 1 which we have pointed out is not obvious in its language, but has a clear message for Scientologists who understand how to read it.

She said Jane Doe 1 had asked for permission to report Danny and to sue him, and the letter gave her permission for that.

But the judge jumped in at this point and said that if you look at the letter, it seems to give her permission to sue — as long as she understood the consequences (hint, hint) — but that it doesn’t say anything about reporting to the police.

Wham, that was quite a moment.


Appelbaum now moves on to Jane Doe 2. In 2003 she was interested in Danny Masterson. She was an anxious person and was intimidated by him. She stayed at his house until 5 am and still wanted a relationship afterwards. She could have walked away at any time. When she said stop in the shower, he did. She was upset he was busy and didn’t want to date her.

She knew he wanted her to get into the jacuzzi, and she went to his house anyway.

Appelbaum then went over what she said were inconsistencies in what Jane Doe 2 said yesterday in testimony versus what she said in a 2017 interview with Mueller. Whether she was getting into the digital penetration or not. Whose idea it was to get into the shower. Whether she remembered walking upstairs with him or not. Whether she thought they would end up dating. Whether there was oral copulation or not. Whether he was holding her hips or not.

She then turned to Christina B. She was 18 and he was 22 when they met. She was a working model. She wanted to get married and have kids, and he didn’t. Her modeling career failed. Their theory is that she blamed him for the failure of her career.

Appelbaum spent some time on the fact that Christina B has been talking for years about the December anal sex incident, but only recently began talking about the November incident as a case of rape. Whether or not he used an open or closed hand when he hit her face. Whether she was asleep or trying to get asleep when he got on top of her. Whether he was “trying to have sex” or was actually inside of her.

She said that it was her husband who convinced her she had been raped. But in 2011, there the three of them are at the Scientology New Year’s Eve event, and her husband is not far from Danny in the crowd. Apparently “Mr. B” does not have a problem with Mr. Masterson, Appelbaum said.

Although the LAPD told them not to talk together, the three victims have tweeted and spoken for four years, and that’s resulted in their stories resembling each other more.

She reads the legal definition of rape and says it hasn’t been met in this case. “Mr. Masterson believed he had consent,” she says, with regard to Jane Doe 1 and Jane Doe 2. She says they don’t believe the incident with Christina B. happened at all. There was no rape, no force. As soon as Masterson realized she didn’t want to have sex with him he got off of her. Her story has been embellished so she can join the other two in this case.

All three have monetary motivations. Jane Doe 1 got money in 2004. We do not believe the burden of proof has been met in any of the three counts.

And now it was Mueller’s turn to respond.

Mueller’s style is very different. He’s super calm. He takes his time. He does nothing for dramatic effect. He started out by explaining what are the four elements that need to be proved here.

Sexual intercourse occurred. That they were not married at the time. That the women did not consent. And that the defendant used violence, menace, or fear.

Physical resistance is not a requirement. That’s been removed from the law. The intercourse is accomplished by physical force over the will. And with fear.

He starts with Jane Doe 1. She has been consistent. She awoke with Danny Masterson on top of her penetrating her vagina. She grabbed his hair, grabbed a pillow and shoved it against him, he pushed it back on her and she couldn’t breathe and she passed out. She also reached for a nightstand, and he grabbed her wrists with one hand and choked her with the other, all while continuing to penetrate her.


She came back to consciousness, heard a voice outside. The defendant got up, pulled a firearm from a nightstand and brandished it at her, telling her don’t fucking move.

Clearly the defendant under those facts physically overcame her will.

As for wearing Gucci pants or unzipping her boots, these are irrelevant. Nobody noticed her bruises? That’s inaccurate. They did show up on photographs there in Florida.

As for who she first told about the attack, she has been consistent. She told her 17-year-old cousin about the incident, but didn’t use the word rape. She was conditioned by the Church of Scientology.

As to the claims that Chapter 12 of the Introduction to Scientology Ethics book represents Scientology’s hopes of an idealistic future: That’s Sharon Appelbaum’s interpretation. The women in this case were actual Scientologists, and Jane Doe 1 was actually an official in the church at one point.

The 1965 policy letter and it’s references to following the laws of the land: What we’re talking about her is reporting. Scientology may consider some things crimes, but who handles it? Who do you go to for justice? You go to the church. You do not go to law enforcement.

Jane Doe 2. I’m hearing a lot from the defense about kissing and fingering. About the jacuzzi and the shower. But consent to one act does not mean consent to another.

She was clear about the conditions she had set, and where she drew the line.

No sex. She made it clear she did not want to go into the water. She made it clear that when she got there, there would be no sex. Mr. Masterson chose not to follow her request.

She testified that when they were in the shower he very quickly had inserted his penis into her vagina. Stop, I told you no, she said.

A person can set rules. She was perhaps comfortable with a mild romantic evening. Maybe some kissing and touching. But she was clear, putting his penis in her was an absolute no.

In bed, he was flipping her over and over, holding her hips. No, I don’t want to have sex with you. He went beyond her boundaries. Flipping her and being violent. So violent that she threw up in her mouth, and broke out crying. In her words, he ravaged her like a rag doll. There is no reasonable person who would believe that was consensual.

The defendant realized there was no consent, she said she was trying to manage the situation.

As for afterwards, the defense counsel is looking for Jane Doe 2 to follow the rules. You should scream and fight back. But the truth is, there are no rules. This is not a stranger who jumped out of an alley. She had looked forward to a nice evening. She ended up drinking, in bed, being flipped and penetrated despite saying she didn’t want to have sex. That took a little processing to understand what had happened.


Christina B.: She was in bed, naked, and wanted to go to sleep. Whether she was sleep or wanted to go to sleep is a semantic difference. The most important thing is, he doesn’t listen to her, gets on top of her, use his full body weight, and penetrated her. He was angry. She pulled his hair in order to make him stop. He hit her with a partially closed fist. Whether it was fully open or partially closed, she showed us in court. She screamed at him. He spit on her and called her white trash.

The interview with Detective Reyes, it was Reyes leading and it was Reyes who said Danny was “trying to have sex,” those weren’t Christina B’s words. She still struggles with describing what happened, but she did it.

The defense counsel alleges collusion, and that it has made the three accounts consistent with each other. But it is anything but. These were not rehearsed statements. They were heartfelt. If there’s any consistency to their statements it comes from the defendant. These were not robots up there, this was heartfelt testimony.

And civil suits? Where have they been? There’s only one, that just came up, for harassment and stalking. They filed to get this defendant and the Church of Scientology to stop what was going on. This wasn’t for money.

The defendant needs to be held accountable.

He rested, and Appelbaum got an opportunity for a brief response.

Yes, they could have filed lawsuits, but it wasn’t until they felt the LAPD wasn’t taking their investigation seriously that they filed in 2019. It shows a motivation of wanted to get something out of this.

Another civil complaint was filed by Jane Doe 1 in 2004…

At that point the judge jumped in — that “complaint” was never filed. Appelbaum apologized.

Jane Doe 1’s version is not truthful. It’s changed over time. Christina B’s story has come from nothing. We believe that what she’s alleging happened in November 2001 did not occur. It’s being embellished so she can appear with the other two.

Jane Doe 2 had certain expectations. Mr. Masterson had beliefs as well. They did gel at one point. He believed there was consent.

We believe Danny Masterson has been unjustly accused. He did not force anyone to have sex.

The both sides are done.

Now it was the judge’s turn.


She spends a few minutes going over the legal standards she is being guided by. That probable cause is the standard. That a defendant is held to answer if the court believes an offense has occurred. She defines forcible rape.

In this case I understand that the defense counsel is describing Mr. Masterson’s perceptions, he didn’t testify, and it would be unusual for him to testify, so I don’t hold that against him. But I can only look at what has been presented.

I find that the testimony of Jane Doe 1, Christina B., and Jane Doe 2 is credible to support charges.

The court’s finding is based on testimony and the exhibits. These exhibits demonstrate the Scientology policies that discourage reporting to the police. And explain some of the inconsistencies in their accounts and the actions taken subsequent to the incidents.

I find there is sufficient evidence to bind over the defendant for jury trial.

He will be held to answer, and bail is continued at $3.3 million

Arraignment is set for June 7, and Masterson will be required to be present.

Mueller then asked again for Danny’s passport, and this time she agreed. They will have to turn it over at the arraignment on June 7.


Source Code

“Now you get down toward the Center of this galaxy and the possibility of finding somebody without the Helatrobus Implants, of finding any foreign implant system, will probably be totally negligible. Probably nonextant, you see? But out here you got a mixed bag and we don’t know what they did in the next galaxy. See? Now, science fiction writers following the cue of some chap, I’ve forgotten his name now, Einstein, Beinstein, something like that, who said that MC squared over C wouldn’t go, man, and that the speed of light could not be excessive. And actually I was looking up some speed tables the other day, and a trillion light years per day is not full throttle on a space wagon. So there’s traffic between galaxies and there’s traffic between islands of galaxies and other islands of galaxies. Interesting.” — L. Ron Hubbard, May 21, 1963



Avast, Ye Mateys

“The auditing was in general better today. Auditors go in fads — now it’s ‘feelings.’ Nobody has any aches, pains or misemotions. They have ‘feelings!’ What happened to good old PAIN. Some aren’t able to confront the flak we get into. It takes a bit of guts to be around Flag. And some get very nervous and want to leave. We have 3 or 4 good things I don’t quit. Thanks for holding the ship together.” — The Commodore, May 21, 1969


Overheard in the FreeZone

“Way before I ever got into Scientology I had total recall on having gone to the implant station and I was showed a film of Christ dying on the cross. I felt great sympathy for him because I was WAY down on the tone scale – I had just got done destroying an entire planet and torturing the people, and I felt so bad about it that I tried to kill myself by pushing myself spiritually down as far as I could go – but of course that only ends up in TOTAL Failure. Of course, even though I had total recall on everything that had happened on the implant station, the evil beings tricked me after putting me in a doll body that looked totally like the one I used to have and then they kicked me out of it with an extremely strong force of electrical voltage, shooting me out into outer space and I fell next to a big glowing white orb, which I thought was God. It spoke to me telepathically and told me I could go down to earth (the beautiful blue marble we were looking at) and do anything I wanted after asking what I wanted to do – Ha! What a lie that is!”


Past is Prologue

1998: The Boston Herald published a story on the death of Philip Gale this week. “Alone in a 15th-floor classroom, MIT sophomore Philip C. Gale drew a physics formula on a blackboard showing what happens when a body falls from a great height. Then he slammed a chair through the classroom window and jumped more than 200 feet to his death, as horrified students watched from a plaza below. As evidence emerged that Gale was suffering from depression, students and staff wondered aloud about why the high-pressure school’s psychological safety net didn’t save him. And friends raised questions about whether his upbringing in a controversial religion – the Church of Scientology – played a part in his suicide. Gale had quit the church. Even so, he chose to kill himself on March 13, the church’s most important annual holiday marking the birthday of the late Scientology founder L. Ron Hubbard. The suicide provoked intense debate on campus, and on the Internet newsgroup alt.religion.scientology, about whether it was linked to Gale’s Scientology upbringing. And Munsey soon created a Web page titled ‘Who is Philip Gale?’ raising questions about a link between Scientology and the suicide.”


Random Howdy

“The only other ‘church’ I can think of that stoops to calling people names is the Westboro Baptist Church.”



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

Criminal prosecutions:
Danny Masterson charged for raping three women: Preliminary hearing set for May 18.
Jay and Jeff Spina, Medicare fraud: Jay sentenced to 9 years in prison. Jeff’s sentencing to be scheduled.
Hanan and Rizza Islam and other family members, Medi-Cal fraud: Pretrial conference May 20 in Los Angeles
David Gentile, GPB Capital, fraud: Next pretrial conference set for June 18.

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. June 7: 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] Scientology so stoked you watched ‘Spread a Smile’ video, it’s trying to cash in tonight
[TWO years ago] A Scientologist is brutally murdered in Peoria, but you didn’t hear it from Scientology
[THREE years ago] Scientology’s elaborate use of child labor for pennies an hour, spelled out in black and white
[FOUR years ago] Scientology may be crumbling, but around the world it’s still plotting a planetary takeover
[FIVE years ago] Atack: Contradictions in L. Ron Hubbard’s ‘tech’ only increase Scientology discipline
[SIX years ago] Leah Remini and Paulette Cooper? Scientology can start worrying now
[SEVEN years ago] No, LA Weekly, Tom Cruise’s career was not ruined by a GIF
[EIGHT years ago] Disconnection: Scientology’s Most Toxic Sacrament
[ELEVEN years ago] Scientology Raided in Italy, Stash of Personal Records on ‘Enemies’ Found


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 2,308 days.
Katrina Reyes has not seen her mother Yelena in 2,812 days
Sylvia Wagner DeWall has not seen her brother Randy in 2,332 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his grandson Leo in 1,352 days.
Geoff Levin has not seen his son Collin and daughter Savannah in 1,243 days.
Christie Collbran has not seen her mother Liz King in 4,550 days.
Clarissa Adams has not seen her parents Walter and Irmin Huber in 2,418 days.
Carol Nyburg has not seen her daughter Nancy in 3,192 days.
Doug Kramer has not seen his parents Linda and Norm in 1,522 days.
Jamie Sorrentini Lugli has not seen her father Irving in 3,996 days.
Quailynn McDaniel has not seen her brother Sean in 3,312 days.
Dylan Gill has not seen his father Russell in 11,878 days.
Melissa Paris has not seen her father Jean-Francois in 7,797 days.
Valeska Paris has not seen her brother Raphael in 3,965 days.
Mirriam Francis has not seen her brother Ben in 3,546 days.
Claudio and Renata Lugli have not seen their son Flavio in 3,807 days.
Sara Goldberg has not seen her daughter Ashley in 2,845 days.
Lori Hodgson has not seen her son Jeremy and daughter Jessica in 2,558 days.
Marie Bilheimer has not seen her mother June in 2,083 days.
Julian Wain has not seen his brother Joseph or mother Susan in 438 days.
Charley Updegrove has not seen his son Toby in 1,613 days.
Joe Reaiche has not seen his daughter Alanna Masterson in 6,164 days
Derek Bloch has not seen his father Darren in 3,313 days.
Cindy Plahuta has not seen her daughter Kara in 3,633 days.
Roger Weller has not seen his daughter Alyssa in 8,488 days.
Claire Headley has not seen her mother Gen in 3,607 days.
Ramana Dienes-Browning has not seen her mother Jancis in 1,963 days.
Mike Rinder has not seen his son Benjamin and daughter Taryn in 6,266 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his daughter Spring in 2,372 days.
Skip Young has not seen his daughters Megan and Alexis in 2,774 days.
Mary Kahn has not seen her son Sammy in 2,646 days.
Lois Reisdorf has not seen her son Craig in 2,229 days.
Phil and Willie Jones have not seen their son Mike and daughter Emily in 2,724 days.
Mary Jane Barry has not seen her daughter Samantha in 2,978 days.
Kate Bornstein has not seen her daughter Jessica in 14,087 days.


Posted by Tony Ortega on May 21, 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


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