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Laura Prepon claims she’s out: ‘For Scientology this is catastrophic’ says Mike Rinder

[Laura Prepon, just six years ago, in a Scientology magazine]

We saw a lot of people on social media celebrating yesterday’s People magazine interview with Laura Prepon, in which the Orange is the New Black actress said she hasn’t practiced Scientology for the last five years.

“I’m no longer practicing Scientology,” says Prepon. “I’ve always been very open-minded, even since I was a child. I was raised Catholic and Jewish. I’ve prayed in churches, meditated in temples. I’ve studied Chinese meridian theory. I haven’t practiced Scientology in close to five years and it’s no longer part of my life.”

Some of our sources, however, cautioned us to read Prepon’s words carefully, especially given the current situation, with her fellow That ’70s Show castmate Danny Masterson facing a criminal rape trial that could put him in prison for life.

But former Scientology spokesman Mike Rinder says that even if Prepon is partly motivated to handle the bad publicity around Masterson, she knew exactly what she was doing when she gave such a statement to a publication like People.


“It’s a fairly significant step in the world of Scientology to make a statement like that. You don’t do that lightly because of the potential ramifications,” Rinder told us by phone last night. “It may serve an ulterior purpose of distancing herself from the Masterson case, or it may be happening thanks to you and Yashar Ali and Leah Remini constantly bringing it up, and there is more pressure on celebrities these days and reporters are asking questions, and uncomfortable questions.

“Whether it’s a calculated PR move or not, it’s a very damaging blow to Scientology to have another one of their mainline celebrities publicly say they are no longer a Scientologist. That’s like panic stations at HQ.”

We found it interesting that Prepon said it had been five years since she quietly stepped away from Scientology.

Six years ago, in 2015, Prepon appeared on the cover of Scientology’s Celebrity magazine (an image from article appears above), and was quoted making some L. Ron Hubbard-soaked statements about how important it was in her life.

Honestly, I’ve become more me. The auditing has stripped away all of this charge, false ideas, decisions and mis-emotions that were affecting me. I recently had one of my biggest cognitions in a New Era Dianetics session. I spotted this decision I made a long time ago that was affecting me to this day. It was a huge realization. At the time of the incident, you make a postulate as a “pro-survival” decision, you know? Then to spot it years and years later, after peeling away these layers and then—boom, there it is—it’s mind blowing! To think of it just hiding there in my bank, affecting me.

Now Prepon is saying that only a year after that interview appeared, she had stepped away from Scientology.

One year later, in 2017, we first broke the news that her good friend Danny Masterson was the subject of an LAPD investigation into the rape allegations being made by three (and later four, and then more) women.

And then, things got worse for the actor: In June 2020, Masterson was actually charged criminally on the allegations of three of the women.

Later that same month, Prepon lofted her first trial balloon about disassociating herself from Scientology by having her publicity team tell the New York Post that she was “not currently active in the church.”

That prompted us at the time to remind readers the role that Prepon had played in early 2004 to intimidate one of Masterson’s victims, Jane Doe #1, who would go on to report her rape allegation to the LAPD later that year.

Things have now gotten even worse for Masterson, who sat through a four-day preliminary hearing this past May during which his victims were able to testify live for the first time, and the press reaction to their horrific allegations was huge. Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Charlaine Olmedo found that enough evidence was presented to justify a criminal trial, which is tentatively scheduled for February, will last weeks, and could send Masterson to prison for 45 years to life if he’s convicted.

Now, a few months after Olmedo’s ruling, Prepon has told People magazine that Scientology is no longer a part of her life.

Some of our sources are skeptical. One of them pointed out that Ben Foster, Prepon’s husband who has been part of a Scientologist crowd without, apparently, getting involved himself, has a couple of movies coming out soon. And Masterson’s trial looms.

But Rinder says that Prepon’s statements go beyond “handling” those issues.


“If she was just trying to distance herself and get out of the limelight on the subject, she would say she had ‘no comment’ on that. Or that she didn’t want to promote Scientology or get into discussions about it. She didn’t do that. She said she’s been out for five years. I think it’s a real reflection of the public perception of Scientology these days that someone feels they need to say and do that,” he says.

We pointed out to Mike that if Laura Prepon has truly left Scientology, she might be asked to correct what she lied about in the past when she said that Scientology supported the gay community.

“Absolutely. I agree. And I think that this opens the door to a lot of people asking her more pointed questions about this. And it should result in that. She may think that this may get her out of the limelight. But in some ways it’s put her in it,” he says.

“I understand why people are skeptical about it, but I just step back and say, you know, in the overall scheme of things, for Scientology this is a catastrophic turn of events.”


Source Code

“You’ve heard time and again how dangerous it is. You mustn’t fool around with the mind! Perfectly all right to take a meat ax to the brain, but you mustn’t fool around with the mind! I got my belly so full in 1950 of psychoanalysts telling me how dangerous it was to fool around with the mind. But I finally more or less rejected it with laughter, because I looked at who was talking. And when he said fool around, man, he meant fool around, because I found out he could not study Dianetics; he could not do it. And do you know our main departure from training psychoanalysts and psychiatrists and medical doctors is not really based on the fact we are antipathetic toward them at all. It’s the fact that they can’t seem to duplicate study materials. And it’s just so hard, it’s so tough.” — L. Ron Hubbard, August 18, 1966


Avast, Ye Mateys

“CONDITION: Bill Blundell, on Dep LRH Comm data of 3 days absence from Qual as an auditor, and from Dir Rev on insolence and refusal to audit is assigned DOUBT. If Bill persists with his SO record of invisibility, the condition will be lowered. There comes a time when all men have to stand up and be seen and do their jobs in life. That time has arrived for Bill Blundell.” — The Commodore, August 18, 1969



Overheard in the FreeZone

“We as scientologists don’t need to fumble around figuring out what kind of future we want. We already have clear plans to implement in the fourth dynamic and for its future. One is LRH’s International City, the creation of a One World Capital in Northern Africa. Another is LRH’s Organization Board. And the other is Captain Bill Robertson’s New Civilization Game. The agenda to implement a One World Government for Earth and the incorporation of Earth to the Galactic community.”


Past is Prologue

1996: Martin Hunt this week posted the story of his leaving Scientology, and the reaction of his former friends. “Some three weeks after I blew I went back to Vancouver to pick up my stuff. The Scientologist I was sharing an apartment with wouldn’t let me in, as she thought I had flipped and was now a dangerous suppressive person. I called out her name, told her I knew she was home, that I just wanted to pick up my stuff, and that I wasn’t a threat of any kind to her. She still wouldn’t let me in, or even acknowledge that I was at the door. I walked out to the corner and phoned her. I then said that I wouldn’t call the cops if she let me have my stuff back, and to this she told me to go to the org downtown and get an OK first and go through ethics as my only terminal, so I went back to the org I hadn’t been to or communicated in any way with for about three weeks. When I showed up at reception, the receptionist immediately called in a higher-up to deal with me, and I was frostily told to go straight to the ED, where I was given a form in triplicate to route-out properly. The ED told me not to talk to anyone, and was very cold to me despite a long acquaintance that went beyond the org; I had been to her house, met her family, seen her down in the State where she was on course while I was (she was doing the FEBC). I went through the form, and had to deal with several people on it, my superior, my division executive, the ethics officer, etc. Everyone talked to me as if I was an evil piece of shit, if they talked to me at all. It was a shocking experience to say hi to someone I thought I knew very well and considered a friend only to have them literally turn their back or walk away or just sneer at me; it was more shocking to see this repeated over and over with everyone I talked to, as if they had all been given instructions on what to do and how to shun me in the best possible manner to cause the most pain.”


Random Howdy

“Not only are there numerous loopholes allowing dangerous cults to operate freely, there are numerous loopholes allowing idiots to buy wild, endangered animals. A portion of these animals end up at canned hunting operations in Dumbfuckistan where they are gunned down by Dick Cheney and evil fucks of that ilk. It’s gotta stop.”


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

Criminal prosecutions:

Danny Masterson charged for raping three women: Next hearing set for November 10. Trial tentatively scheduled for February.
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 August 21 in Los Angeles
David Gentile, GPB Capital, fraud: Next pretrial conference set for Sept 9.

Civil litigation:
Luis and Rocio Garcia v. Scientology: Oral arguments were heard on July 30, 2020 at the Eleventh Circuit
Valerie Haney v. Scientology: Forced to ‘religious arbitration.’ Petition to US Supreme Court submitted on May 26. Scientology responded on June 25.
Chrissie Bixler et al. v. Scientology and Danny Masterson: California Supreme Court granted review on May 26 and asked the Second Appellate Division to direct Judge Steven Kleifield to show cause why he granted Scientology’s motion for arbitration. Oral arguments scheduled for Oct 5.
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: Third 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 23. Appeal hearing scheduled for Aug 23-27.

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.



We first broke the news of the LAPD’s investigation of Scientology celebrity Danny Masterson on rape allegations in 2017, and we’ve been covering the story every step of the way since then. At this page we’ve collected our most important links, including our four days in Los Angeles covering the preliminary hearing and its ruling, which has Danny facing trial and the potential sentence of 45 years to life in prison.


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 BLACK OPS: Tom Cruise and dirty tricks. 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] Leah Remini’s podcast: Paulette Cooper, Scientology’s ‘OG of Fair Game victims’
[TWO years ago] Scientology is staffing its Narconon in Ireland like it’s already won court approval
[THREE years ago] From Jon Atack’s ‘Blue Sky’: Reorganizing Scientology as L. Ron Hubbard’s life waned
[FOUR years ago] As he predicted, Pastor Willy Rice gets the Scientology ‘Fair Game’ treatment
[FIVE years ago] New Scientology financial disclosures reflect the dire state of its chief drug rehab
[SIX years ago] Google helps Scientology huckster Per Wickstrom bury a rehab patient death
[SEVEN years ago] Scientology graduation videos from Copenhagen? Yes, please!
[EIGHT years ago] Sunday Funnies: A Scientology Advertising Bonanza!
[NINE years ago] Former President of Narconon Oklahoma Now Calls It ‘Watered-Down Version of Introductory Scientology’
[TEN years ago] Scientology Watching Hits the Beach!


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 2,396 days.
Katrina Reyes has not seen her mother Yelena in 2,901 days
Sylvia Wagner DeWall has not seen her brother Randy in 2,421 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his grandson Leo in 1,441 days.
Geoff Levin has not seen his son Collin and daughter Savannah in 1,332 days.
Christie Collbran has not seen her mother Liz King in 4,639 days.
Clarissa Adams has not seen her parents Walter and Irmin Huber in 2,507 days.
Carol Nyburg has not seen her daughter Nancy in 3,281 days.
Doug Kramer has not seen his parents Linda and Norm in 1,611 days.
Jamie Sorrentini Lugli has not seen her father Irving in 4,085 days.
Quailynn McDaniel has not seen her brother Sean in 3,401 days.
Dylan Gill has not seen his father Russell in 11,967 days.
Melissa Paris has not seen her father Jean-Francois in 7,886 days.
Valeska Paris has not seen her brother Raphael in 4,054 days.
Mirriam Francis has not seen her brother Ben in 3,635 days.
Claudio and Renata Lugli have not seen their son Flavio in 3,896 days.
Sara Goldberg has not seen her daughter Ashley in 2,934 days.
Lori Hodgson has not seen her son Jeremy and daughter Jessica in 2,647 days.
Marie Bilheimer has not seen her mother June in 2,172 days.
Julian Wain has not seen his brother Joseph or mother Susan in 527 days.
Charley Updegrove has not seen his son Toby in 1,702 days.
Joe Reaiche has not seen his daughter Alanna Masterson in 6,253 days
Derek Bloch has not seen his father Darren in 3,402 days.
Cindy Plahuta has not seen her daughter Kara in 3,722 days.
Roger Weller has not seen his daughter Alyssa in 8,577 days.
Claire Headley has not seen her mother Gen in 3,696 days.
Ramana Dienes-Browning has not seen her mother Jancis in 2,052 days.
Mike Rinder has not seen his son Benjamin and daughter Taryn in 6,355 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his daughter Spring in 2,461 days.
Skip Young has not seen his daughters Megan and Alexis in 2,859 days.
Mary Kahn has not seen her son Sammy in 2,735 days.
Lois Reisdorf has not seen her son Craig in 2,318 days.
Phil and Willie Jones have not seen their son Mike and daughter Emily in 2,813 days.
Mary Jane Barry has not seen her daughter Samantha in 3,067 days.
Kate Bornstein has not seen her daughter Jessica in 14,176 days.


Posted by Tony Ortega on August 18, 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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