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


Another Scientology ‘Chase Wave’ eyewitness drops by, and brings a check

We are still hearing from Scientologists (current and former) about an effort by the church, in the years between about 2015 and 2019, to saddle members with huge debts by deceptively opening new credit card accounts for them, and from Chase Bank in particular.

This “Chase Wave” was so regularized, a step-by-step procedure was written up and sent to church salespeople (known as “registrars” in Scientology) to perpetuate the scam.

We have had former Scientologists like Mark Fladd and George McAlpine describe their first-hand experiences with the Chase Wave, and we’ve also heard from sources still inside the church about it, including today’s participant, a longtime reader who is “under the radar” and is still in good standing.

And we are especially grateful that today’s source brought us a document along with their account of not only being victimized in the Chase Wave, but also foiling it.



As you can see, the attached check is from [year, redacted] — the height of the Chase Wave. And a rare sight: a check FROM Scientology.

I had been out of contact for a few years when LA Org contacted me with an offer I couldn’t refuse. Suddenly I had five or six new credit cards totaling about $60,000. I immediately contacted the banks involved and easily canceled all but one since all but that one still had a zero balance. But a [four-figure] charge had been made by Scientology on a new Chase card. I already had a Chase card so their fraud department was quite helpful to me as an existing customer. Scientology would not simply reverse the charge but they agreed to send me a check so I could pay off the charge. Did they think that if they reversed the charge they would be admitting to something?

The credit card blast infuriated me. While I was being love bombed on one side of this huge room, on the other side several Sea Org workers were busy behind my back (literally and figuratively) opening new credit card accounts.

We want to thank our reader for coming forward, and we hope that many more of you will.


Sign up for a daily email when we post a new story on Scientology.

Did you know you can get an email every morning when we post our daily Scientology story? We know some of the folks who come to the Underground Bunker aren’t here to talk about the politics of the day, and that’s why we created a daily politics feature over at our other blog, The Lowdown, and we ask readers to take their political discussions over there. And if you drop us a line at tonyo94 AT gmail, we’ll put you on the list so you get a morning reminder that a new Scientology story has been posted — and only for our Scientology stories.


Source Code


“Now, I have actually seen auditors get jealous of their preclears simply because the preclear did so well. And the auditor couldn’t rest till he dropped a vase on the preclear’s foot or upset the ashtray or did something. I know of one case — very, very remarkable — of a guy very highly connected, and in fact the source of trouble in the Wichita Foundation, who had a blind man with his sight on and who forcefully and violently kicked the foot of the bed on which he was auditing this blind man. You know, the sight came on and he kicked the foot of the bed. And the shock was considerable there and it took the blind man’s sight off. Nobody else processed the blind man, either. As far as I know he’s blind to this moment.” — L. Ron Hubbard, January 6, 1955


Avast, Ye Mateys

“WRITING: My writing hat has backlogged due to storms and ship reorganization. I am trying to get onto it. So much new data has been developed that the recording of if would be 10 full time jobs. Fortunately it is simple in structure.” — The Commodore, January 6, 1971


Overheard in the FreeZone

“I was audited by a class 8 auditor. Further processing something else, I took over the session using her and her meter to guide me to answer some questions I had. I went to the days of the crucifixion and went inside Christ body and some very heavy forces was hitting the spirit of me, not the body. I left the body, looked from a distance, and saw an oval of gold light in front of him and this oval went up into the sky and it was a UFO implanting the area and running beams on the being of Christ. I yelled, it was a trick. Whoever was in that ship tricked Christ into doing that crucifixion for what reasons I don’t know, but the being in me knows.”


Past is Prologue

1998: Bob Minton reported two incidents of Scientologists leafleting his street in Boston, Massachusetts this week, and reports of private investigators contacting friends and relatives doing a “noisy investigation”: “Twilight 5:00 PM today– $cientologist descend in cover of darkness onto Beacon Hill in Boston to leaflet the neighborhood. Take last leaflet and add ‘HATRED HIDDEN BEHIND FREE SPEECH’ for a header, minus ‘rally’ in body of text and substitute ‘ATTACK’ in a different font. Presto, the cult has a new leaflet. We shamed them into signing their message which reads as follows: ‘(c)1998 by the Church of Scientology of Boston All rights reserved.’ Tonight, once again under cover of darkness, Boston area $cientologist sneak into my neighborhood to distribute a new leaflet, photo included. Please note that in $cientology’s ever expanding mode a new group was formed and signed this leaflet–STAND (Scientologists Taking Action for Non-Discrimination). ‘Recent investigation has disclosed that your neighbor, Robert Minton of 39 West Cedar St., has paid over $1.25 million to individuals who are engaged in a campaign to create hatred against members of the Church of Scientology. Mr. Minton’s funds have been paid to bigoted individuals who have: Engaged in spreading hundreds of pornographic and obscene messages about members of the Church on the internet (which can be accessed by anyone including children); Made numerous threats of violence against members of the Church including sado-masochistic acts; Been found responsible for pirating Church copyrighted materials on the internet; Associated with and obtained the full support of the most prominent neo-NAZI in the world today as part of the campaign of hate against Scientologists.’ A few days ago, OSA plays back a tape over the phone from tonight’s Public Eye or from unused portions of Public Eye to my father in which I said he was an abusive father and husband. He most probably denied it and this now gives Justin fodder for his thread entitled Minton Claims about his early days. Eugene Ingram [is] calling around. He’s investigating me for ‘a conspiracy to commit extortion’.”



Random Howdy

“Scientologists have had a King Arthur fetish going back to day one. LRH moving to England buying a ‘castle,’ very expected and cliched to say the least. Knights of the Three Card Monte Table, here to save the world.”


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

Criminal prosecutions:
Danny Masterson charged for raping three women: Next hearing set for February 8. Trial scheduled for August 29, 2022.
‘Lafayette Ronald Hubbard’ (a/k/a Justin Craig), false imprisonment, aggravated assault, plus drug charges: Next hearing scheduled for January 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 January 22 in Los Angeles
David Gentile, GPB Capital, fraud: Next pretrial conference set for February 11.
Joseph ‘Ben’ Barton, Medicare fraud: Pleaded guilty, awaiting sentencing.

Civil litigation:
Luis and Rocio Garcia v. Scientology: Eleventh Circuit affirmed ruling granting Scientology’s motion for arbitration. Garcias considering next move.
Valerie Haney v. Scientology: Forced to ‘religious arbitration.’ US Supreme Court denied Valerie’s petition Oct 4.
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 held November 2, awaiting a ruling.
Brian Statler Sr v. City of Inglewood: Third amended complaint filed, trial set for June 28, 2022.
Author Steve Cannane defamation trial: Trial concluded, Cannane victorious, awarded court costs. Case appealed on Dec 23. Appeal hearing held Aug 23-27. Awaiting a ruling.
Chiropractors Steve Peyroux and Brent Detelich, stem cell fraud: Lawsuit filed by the FTC and state of Georgia in August, now in discovery phase.



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] Danny Masterson’s attorneys scheduled to enter not guilty plea for him today
[TWO years ago] Scientology’s ‘Purif’ detox gets the ‘Reckless Ben’ treatment in video debuting here today
[THREE years ago] Scientologists told to seize on Australian stabbing death as a recruiting opportunity
[FOUR years ago] Scientology actress Jenna Elfman fully stoked by church’s new expansion push!
[FIVE years ago] Scientology’s disgusting secret: Young teens used to interrogate adults about their sex lives
[SIX years ago] Scientology becoming a ghost town; ALSO: Illinois man arrested for threatening Miscavige
[SEVEN years ago] Ryan Hamilton makes it 26 lawsuits against Scientology’s drug rehab scheme
[EIGHT years ago] VIDEO LEAK: Scientology’s November IAS Gala, featuring a slimmed-down David Miscavige
[NINE years ago] Sunday Funnies: Scientology Finds a Better Use for ‘Dianetics’!
[TEN years ago] Scientology on the High Seas: Ringing in 20 A.D. with the Commodore!


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 2,537 days.
Katrina Reyes has not seen her mother Yelena in 3,042 days
Sylvia Wagner DeWall has not seen her brother Randy in 2,562 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his grandson Leo in 1,582 days.
Geoff Levin has not seen his son Collin and daughter Savannah in 1,473 days.
Christie Collbran has not seen her mother Liz King in 4,780 days.
Clarissa Adams has not seen her parents Walter and Irmin Huber in 2,648 days.
Carol Nyburg has not seen her daughter Nancy in 3,422 days.
Doug Kramer has not seen his parents Linda and Norm in 1,753 days.
Jamie Sorrentini Lugli has not seen her father Irving in 4,226 days.
Quailynn McDaniel has not seen her brother Sean in 3,542 days.
Dylan Gill has not seen his father Russell in 12,108 days.
Melissa Paris has not seen her father Jean-Francois in 8,027 days.
Valeska Paris has not seen her brother Raphael in 4,195 days.
Mirriam Francis has not seen her brother Ben in 3,776 days.
Claudio and Renata Lugli have not seen their son Flavio in 4,037 days.
Sara Goldberg has not seen her daughter Ashley in 3,073 days.
Lori Hodgson has not seen her son Jeremy and daughter Jessica in 2,788 days.
Marie Bilheimer has not seen her mother June in 2,313 days.
Julian Wain has not seen his brother Joseph or mother Susan in 668 days.
Charley Updegrove has not seen his son Toby in 1,843 days.
Joe Reaiche has not seen his daughter Alanna Masterson in 6,394 days
Derek Bloch has not seen his father Darren in 3,543 days.
Cindy Plahuta has not seen her daughter Kara in 3,863 days.
Roger Weller has not seen his daughter Alyssa in 8,718 days.
Claire Headley has not seen her mother Gen in 3,837 days.
Ramana Dienes-Browning has not seen her mother Jancis in 2,193 days.
Mike Rinder has not seen his son Benjamin and daughter Taryn in 6,496 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his daughter Spring in 2,602 days.
Skip Young has not seen his daughters Megan and Alexis in 3,000 days.
Mary Kahn has not seen her son Sammy in 2,876 days.
Lois Reisdorf has not seen her son Craig in 2,459 days.
Phil and Willie Jones have not seen their son Mike and daughter Emily in 2,954 days.
Mary Jane Barry has not seen her daughter Samantha in 3,208 days.
Kate Bornstein has not seen her daughter Jessica in 14,317 days.


Posted by Tony Ortega on January 6, 2022 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


Tony Ortega at The Daily Beast


Share Button
Print Friendly, PDF & Email