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Transcript: When Valerie Haney completed her escape from Scientology by vowing not to sue

[Valerie Haney and attorney Gary Soter]

We have a pretty stunning new document for you today which turned up in a recent court filing. It’s a transcript of the 2017 videotaped session when Scientology allowed Valerie Haney to leave her job in the Sea Org — but only if she signed away any right to sue the church for how she had been treated.

Two years later, she did just that and filed a lawsuit against the church, alleging that she had been held against her will as a Sea Org worker. She also alleged that she had been subjected to frightening stalking and libel after her escape. As for promising not to sue when she signed the 2017 agreement while being videotaped, she claims that she did so under duress.

When we saw what was in the transcript, we immediately thought of a similar video made years earlier when Debbie Cook was trying to get away from the Sea Org. Debbie had been a major figure, the captain of the “Flag Land Base” in Clearwater, Florida, but after being put in “the Hole” and subjected to horrific punishments, she wanted out.

Scientology, however, insists on a “routing out” procedure, which in her case included being videotaped while a church attorney asked her to sign her rights away. In 2012 Scientology sued Debbie for sending out an email to other Scientologists critical of church leader David Miscavige. The church claimed this violated the agreement she had signed. Under oath in a Texas courtroom, when Debbie’s attorney Ray Jeffrey asked her about the things she had signed and said in that videotape, she explained that she would have done anything just to get away. “I would have signed that I stabbed babies over and over again and loved it. I would have done anything basically at that point,” she testified.

Valerie Haney was in a similar situation in February 2017. She had escaped from Scientology’s secretive “Int Base” several months earlier by hiding in the trunk of a car driven by an actor who had been shooting a video at the compound. Under pressure from her Scientologist father, Valerie agreed to return and “route out properly,” which took several months (and much longer than she had expected). By the time she was asked to sign some final papers while on videotape, Valerie, like Debbie Cook before her, was prepared to do anything just to get away. She has also claimed in court papers that she was intimidated as church attorney Gary Soter led her through the process. According to Valerie, there was an armed security guard in the room, and several other figures outside the door, and she was frightened. (The church has denied that an armed guard was in the room.)


And who is Gary Soter? We want to remind you that he is not only one of Scientology’s attorneys, but one who is assigned to some of the church’s scummiest operations. In 2016, when Scientology wanted to derail Leah Remini’s new series at A&E (“Scientology and the Aftermath”), Soter sent the network a threatening letter.

The first episode of the series was about Amy Scobee and how she had been raped at only 14 years of age while working on staff at a Scientology mission by an older man also working for the church. In Soter’s letter, sent just days before the episode was scheduled to air, he claimed that Amy had actually been 16 years old (Amy showed us evidence confirming that she was only 14) and also that she had been the “sexual aggressor” in the encounter.

To this day we are stunned and disappointed that the Underground Bunker is the only news organization that said a word about this vile letter sent from Scientology’s attack dog attorney, Soter, to A&E, which was intended to frighten the network from airing Amy Scobee’s allegations.

So keep all that in mind as you read this transcript, which we have taken from the court document, and which describes Valerie Haney’s attempt in February 2017 to get away from Scientology by signing whatever was put in front of her.

Tomorrow, Valerie will be in court as a new judge, Gail Killefer, reviews the progress in her lawsuit, which another judge forced into Scientology’s “religious arbitration.” Valerie was forced into it based on the document she signed that day in 2017, with Gary Soter asking her how much she enjoyed working for Scientology, and for David Miscavige in particular.

We think you’ll get a very good sense of how things went down that day.

Gary Soter: Let the cameras roll. Action. All right, Valerie, I am Gary Soter …
Valerie Haney: Awesome.
Soter: … and we were introduced about 10-15 minutes ago, yes?
Haney: Yes
Soter: It’s February 13, 2017, we’re at the Hollywood Guarantee Bank Building, on Hollywood Blvd. And you and I hadn’t met before today, right?
Haney: That’s correct.
Soter: And I did introduce myself and we talked about what was going to happen, correct?

Haney: Yeah, and it is all good.
Soter: All right. And do I have your permission to videotape our interview?
Haney: Yes, you do.
Soter: The reason for this interview is that you are departing staff today.
Haney: Yes.
Soter: You are leaving the Sea Org-where you’ve been for how many years?
Haney: 21 years or 22 years.
Soter: And during that time you signed a lot of agreements.
Haney: Yes.
Soter: And one of the things you are going to do today is you’re going to reaffirm those agreements with an explanation which we talked about right before we started here and I am going to go through the agreement and some of the documents you prepared to make sure that you fully understand them.
Haney: OK, great.
Soter: So, how do you feel about the church and the Sea Org as you are about to leave?
Haney: Well, it is awesome. I mean the organization and Scientology and the Sea Org, I mean the Sea Org is the most dedicated organization in the world that is pushing forward Scientology and is there so Scientology can be there, and Scientology is the answer to everything. So it is pretty good stuff.
Soter: So you are a dedicated Scientologist?
Haney: Yes.
Soter: You’re not angry with anybody?
Haney: No.
Soter: You’re not upset with anybody?
Haney: No.
Soter: You don’t think anybody treated you in an unfair, wrong way?
Haney: (Shakes head no)
Soter: Anybody tell you to say those words that you just said on camera?
Haney: No, no, no, that’s legit.
Soter: That’s really you?
Haney: That’s me.
Soter: And you’ve had enough sleep in the last couple of days?
Haney: Yes [laughs].
Soter: All right. You haven’t had any alcohol to drink?
Haney: No, I am totally good. This is totally me. You can read many times that I have said these exact same words throughout the 20 years that I have worked here and this is not changing. And it will never change no matter what happens [laughs].
Soter: Has anyone coerced you to say anything that you are about to say today?
Haney: No.
Soter: Has anyone forced you to sign anything?
Haney: No.
Soter: All right. Have you been presented with a staff departure release agreement?
Haney: Yes.
Soter: That’s the thing in front of you, right? It’s 14 pages long.
Haney: Yes.
Soter: Have you read it?
Haney: I did read it.
Soter: Did you understand it?
Haney: I do understand it.
Soter: Did you ask some questions about it?
Haney: I did ask some questions about it.
Soter: And were all those questions answered to your complete satisfaction?
Haney: Yes.
Soter: OK. Now, what I would like to do is sort of go through this staff departure release agreement, 14 pages, with you to make sure that you understand it and to answer any questions you might have, Valerie.
Haney: OK.
Soter: Now, you’re known as Valerie Light, that’s your married name, is that right?
Haney: Yes, married and then divorced two years ago. I kind of kept it a little bit longer because everyone knew me by that. In my profession, everyone knew me by that name. So changing it would have caused a bit of a commotion. So now, in this exact moment, I am changing it to Haney.
Soter: OK, so that’s your maiden name?
Haney: Yes.
Soter: And you are going to change that out, just by…
Haney: Legality-wise, eventually I am not going to do it, you know, oh my gosh, I am dying, or something. But I’ve signed my name now Valerie Haney.
Soter: So you worked as a Casting Director?
Haney: Yes.
Soter: At Golden Era Productions in Hemet, correct?
Haney: Yes.
Soter: And was that a job you enjoyed?
Haney: Yes,
Soter: That was really fun?
Haney: A lot of fun.
Soter: How many years did you do that?
Haney: I did that for six years.
Soter: And what was your last job at the Sea Org?
Haney: That was it.
Soter: Oh, so you’re, as of today you were a Casting Director?
Haney: Well yeah, as of November.
Soter: That was casting for the Church’s religious films?
Haney: Yes, yes, that was all the anti-drug PSAs, all the ads, The Way To Happiness book-to-film, FOT, all the Internal Training Films. Yeah, it was really awesome.
Soter: Were you working there as a paid employee or as a volunteer for the church?
Haney: As a volunteer, absolutely.
Soter: So you understood you weren’t going to get a salary and or minimum wage?
Haney: Totally.
Soter: Was that OK with you?
Haney: Absolutely. Through the 21 years that I worked in the Sea Org, that’s how it’s been. Whatever job or whatever post I’ve held, that was my agreement at the beginning. I was not doing this for money. This was strictly dedicated thing that I was doing on myself with my own determination.
Soter: And did you find the job generally satisfying and enjoyable?
Haney: Oh yeah, it was awesome. It was fun. I mean, every job that I’ve held has been awesome. [Laughs] There was not one job that I had that was not fabulous.
Soter: Fabulous?!
Haney: Yeah [laughs].
Soter: That’s great. So you were working with people you enjoyed working with?
Haney: Absolutely?
Soter: Did anybody mistreat you?
Haney: No [laughs].
Soter: Never? OK.
Haney: I am not saying it was a walk in the park. There was definitely, you know, demands, things that are necessary in any business or any endeavor that you are very dedicatedly doing. You are going to have things that are pressure, or stress or heavy on you that maybe you may not like. OK, well, I went through with it because it was really the purpose that I had with Scientology as my religion.
Soter: So it was all worthwhile?
Haney: Worth it. Mm-hm.
Soter: All right, so this pressure that you were occasionally put under, sometimes they wanted results, sometimes you were required to work long days, no extra compensation, sometimes you probably felt sleep deprived. Yes, no?
Haney: Yeah, not really.
Soter: Not really. OK, so one of the things you are doing here by signing this agreement is saying look, you recognize you had high expectations, you had a tough job, you have no claims against the church.
Haney: No.
Soter: No claims against the church.
Haney: No, none of my jobs that I have ever held, none of the positions I have ever been in, no amount of duress or whatever because of the production, and because of the work load, and because of the high intensity of the production demand, none of that I have any qualms, any complaints, any — it’s actually awesome-that I have no problems with.
Soter: You know, I am really delighted to hear that.
Haney: Yeah.
Soter: Let me tell you something. So you go back in the real world and you are no longer working with people in the church and then you tell somebody — Joe Blow up in Oregon — you worked these long hours and then somebody tells you, “you know what, you should have been paid what a Casting Director makes in Hollywood, they make a $100,000 a year and they were paying you $50 a week. That’s terrible.” First of all, you have already told me you worked as a volunteer.
Haney: Yeah, and first of all, if someone ever says that, then they don’t even know one iota of what they are talking about because the purpose in which I was doing that job and all my other jobs was not to get money, not to get a position, not to have a rank or prestige or whatever. I mean obviously I work hard, I do my work and you gain that as you work hard. But none of that is for compensation or…
Soter: You realize that by signing this though you are saying that OK, if I did have a claim, I am giving it up. You are releasing any claim, that’s part of what…
Haney: Totally.
Soter: OK. Now, when you joined the Sea Org, did they make any promise to you that if you left early, before the billion years is up that they would make a severance payment to you?
Haney: No.
Soter: OK, so you see that in the agreement they are going to pay you a severance of $4,500 to help you transition into your new life in Portland, Oregon, right? Now that is not something that they have a contract or are required to pay you. But they are going to pay you and in return you are making some promises to them.
Haney: Yes.
Soter: One of the promises is that you are reaffirming what you signed before about keeping church secrets.
Haney: Totally.
Soter: And you had expressed some concerns about one of the promises you made which was you were allowing the church when it wanted to, to listen in on your phone calls and read you e-mails and look at your letters. Let me make that clear. First of all we wrote it in, that it is no longer true after you leave the Sea Org.
Haney: Right.
Soter: So we have it on record and there will be a video tape of it and it is handwritten into the agreement
Haney: Yeah, like no tracking of the phone and phone numbers.
Soter: Correct, your phone is your phone, your letters are your letters, you have a right to privacy with all due respect.
Haney: OK, great.
Soter: Let’s go through this. So you got the $4,500 which is in paragraph one.
Haney: Yes.
Soter: And in paragraph two it talks about as a Sea Org member you agreed to be part of a religious community and you agreed to the lifestyle constraints inherent in living in a communal way.
Haney: Totally.
Soter: OK, that’s true.
Haney: And I have no problems with that.
Soter: And that you have made a commitment to a religious purpose and there you are available for work 24 hours a day even if they didn’t call you to work 24 hours a day.
Haney: Yep, that’s correct.
Soter: And did you understand that as a Sea Org member you are expected to uphold the highest standards of personal ethical conduct at all times?
Haney: Yeah.
Soter: And you knew that if you chose to leave a staff position of the Sea Org, there is a precise procedure to route out?
Haney: Yeah.
Soter: Did you go through that precise procedure?
Haney: I did go through that.
Soter: Now I understand, some people say it is pretty rigorous thing. Are you OK with that? Were you treated OK during the route process?
Haney: Yes. I was OK.
Soter: You’ve already said your desire was to serve your religion because of your personal religious commitment.
Haney: That’s right.
Soter: Does that remain true the entire time that you were there?
Haney: Yes, regardless of what I did.
Soter: And you understood that what you did as a casting director and your job was to further the religious purposes of the church?
Haney: Yes.
Soter: Now, if you go to paragraph three it says that you reaffirm your non-disclosure agreements of the past.
Haney: Yes
Soter: And the non-disclosure agreements mean you are not going to disclose confidential information about church plans. So if you were working on a particular PSA for example, it hasn’t been distributed to the public, you are not going to go blabbing to people about oh, guess what PSA I did, what actors I obtained. Those are all confidential information.
Haney: Right.
Soter: Likewise, if you had access to the Upper Level materials, those are considered confidential.
Haney: Of course. I didn’t, but that’s OK.
Soter: So, confidential information …
Haney: But obviously if, the stuff that has been released to the public, if I say hey, you know, I hired those actors, check that out, I hired those actors.
Soter: You hired those actors, I think that’s OK. But what wouldn’t be OK if you say, you know I hired actor so and so and he says I am the greatest. So you can’t make a commercial endorsement of some actor saying that you, Valerie-that that actor says that Valerie is a great casting director.
Haney: Hmmm.
Soter: Because that would be commercial appropriation of his name without the actor’s permission.
Haney: Oh, yeah, yeah, yeah, of course not.
Soter: So you can’t have these actors endorse you. But what you can do is if you have any questions about what is or not permissible as far as what you can say about your experiences within the Church, whether it is considered a confidential communication or not is reach out to a terminal and your terminal would be the head of Security which is Kirsten Pederson.
Haney: Cool
Soter: But I don’t think there is any problem saying I worked on that piece and you’re proud of it. That was my …
Haney: Yeah-like if it is playing and I go hey, I hired all those actors whatever, that’s what I did.
Soter: That’s fine. What wouldn’t be cool though is for you to go through your rolodex and contact the actors and try to solicit them for business.
Haney: Of course not.
Soter: That’s not OK.
Haney: Yeah.
Soter: All right, now if there’s trade secrets about the way the church makes it programs, hires the actors, what vendors are used, all that’s considered confidential as well.
Haney: Yeah. Oh yeah, that was the other thing.
Soter: Yeah, what?
Haney: Yeah.
Soter: Tell me.
Haney: That vendors thing, because somewhere in here it says if you like I can never be hired by anyone that’s affiliated or…
Soter: Here’s the deal. I don’t agree with that.
Haney: Like sisters and cousins and dogs that went to the, you know.
Soter: No, I don’t agree with that. I don’t think that’s what’s intended.
Haney: OK.
Soter: What is intended is that you do not use your confidential trade secret information that you acquire to solicit a job.
Haney: OK.
Soter: But if somebody were to contact you because they remember you and wanted to hire you and you didn’t use confidential trade secret information to acquire it, you can go ahead and work for them.
Haney: OK, good.
Soter: That’s what’s intended.
Haney: OK, good. That’s what I wanted to …
Soter: There’s a difference.
Haney: There’s a big difference because I am using my privilege because of what I had …
Soter: That you can’t do
Haney: Exactly. But if then I go walking down the street and Joe Blow goes oh my gosh, what are you doing and wow, I can really use your help and I knew him 10 years ago or whatever …
Soter: That’s fine.
Haney: Good, thank you.
Soter: That’s your right.
Haney: Thank you.
Soter: OK. And if you ever have a question about what your rights are, call over here, ask for Kirsten. If it involves a legal issue, I’ll get involved, we’ll get an answer for you in 24 hours.
Haney: OK, cool.
Soter: At least I’ll try to.
Haney: [Laughing] Or 48, yeah.
Soter: This all has to do, the reason for that is you’re not to use or try to take advantage of confidential information.
Haney: Totally.
Soter: Just like somebody walking down the street, sees Valerie, wants to hire her, that’s cool.
Haney: All right.
Soter: So that’s covered in paragraph 3F. “I further agree I will not use confidential information to solicit employment.”
Haney: Yeah, that one.
Soter: That’s what you are agreeing to.
Haney: Yeah.
Soter: Now you have PC folders, which are preclear folders. Now you understand that the church maintains those?
Haney: Yeah, totally, totally.
Soter: Do you understand that this agreement itself is confidential?
Haney: Yes.
Soter: And we spoke before we started today saying that it was your preference not to keep a copy because you’re going to be living with …
Haney:: With other people.
Soter: With other people who aren’t bound by the confidentiality privilege. And if you ever want to know what is in there because you don’t remember, you can always call us up.
Haney: Yeah.
Soter: Speak to Kirsten
Haney: Yeah.
Soter: Who will let you know what the agreement says, work out any questions.
Haney: Questions, yeah.
Soter: OK. And we’ve already talked about you acknowledge that you have no claims against any Scientology entity.
Haney: That’s right.
Soter: You’re releasing everybody affiliated with the church — all the management, all the organizations.
Haney: Yeah.
Soter: And their lawyer…
Haney: [Laughing.]
Soter: …for any claims you might have.
Haney: Totally.
Soter: OK.
Haney: And there won’t be any, so it is OK. No claims.
Soter: You’re sure?
Haney: Yes
Soter: Positive?
Haney: 100 percent!
Soter: OK.
Haney: Come on!
Soter: All right. This release covers every claim that you might have or possibly could have…
Haney: Exactly.
Soter: …now or in the future, for everything up until today.
Haney: That’s right.
Soter: OK.
Haney: Ever.
Soter: Even if you don’t know that you have a claim, you are giving it up?
Haney: That’s right.
Soter: All right.
Haney: Yeah. Cause claim is basically, you have anything negative or anything that you are going to go blah…
Soter: Right.
Haney: …to the media or to legal or to courts or to whatever that would that would be any negative on anything in any substantial grounding — I am giving up that claim and I am giving up that right to claim or to have any negative anything put out from me on Scientology or Scientologists or Sea Org members or anyone affiliated with it or anything.
Soter: All right, you just covered the next paragraph.
Haney: OK, good [laughs].
Soter: That’s right.
Haney: Because I totally agree with that.
Soter: You are not going to disparage the church you are not going to talk to the media about…
Haney: No.
Soter: First of all, you haven’t said anything bad about the church you seem to have enjoyed what you did and you…
Haney: Yeah.
Soter: You also agree to certain, $25,000 if you break your promise each time.
Haney: Right, yeah. That’s pretty fucked [laughs]. That’s really fucked up, huh?
Soter: It’s pretty serious and, you know, we put a number in there because we can’t figure out what the real damage would be. The actual damages are to give our best estimate.
Haney: Yeah, that’s fine but it’s not going to happen, so you don’t have to worry about it. And then it also says that if it is more than that, I need to pay that for senior damages that could be higher than the $25,000 and that I am also agreeing to pay that but that’s never going to happen because that’s never going to happen.
Soter: All right, and you also agree that if you ever did get into a dispute with the church you are going to resolve it according to the church ecclesiastical justice system.
Haney: Yes.
Soter: That means no court case.
Haney: That’s correct.
Soter: All right and you will try to resolve these things, you know …
Haney: With communication.
Soter: With communication, that’s right.
Haney: To the actual proper terminals within the organization.
Soter: That’s the understanding. Now, again, you understand that this agreement is binding, not only on you but your heirs?
Haney: Yeah, I was kind of, I didn’t really, yeah, I don’t get that.
Soter: What does that mean? Well, if you had children, if you get married, it means it binds them too.
Haney: Not really tracking with that, but …
Soter: Well, let say you died, and then whoever your heirs are …
Haney: Yeah
Soter: … your sister or mother says oh, you were mistreated.
Haney: Ohhh.
Soter: Let’s say they are not Scientologists …
Haney: Ahh.
Soter: They say, you know what, Valerie should have been paid for all her work. This would mean they don’t take anything. They are bound by this as well. Your intention is not only to bind yourself …
Haney: OK.
Soter: … but those who may claim rights.
Haney: Like speaking for me?
Soter: As your representatives. Yeah, that’s the intention.
Haney: OK. OK, now I have a question on that …
Soter: They would not be bound by the liquidated damages stuff.
Haney: OK, like if I die, and somebody does something, and they go rhaa, and they’re going to be charged, and they’re going to be …
Soter: No.
Haney: Because I am going to need to tell them that.
Soter: The intention here is to bind your heirs to the release provisions, the confidentiality provisions.
Haney: OK.
Soter: All right?
Haney: OK.
Soter: All right. Now, you expressed some concern when we talked before the camera went on about paragraph 9E.
Haney: Yeah.
Soter: Because you are reaffirming the promises that you made when you first became a member of the church. And one of the promises…
Haney: Well, yeah.
Soter: One of the covenants, one of the agreements you made is you allowed the Church to open your mail, see your e-mails, to monitor telephone calls, things like that. So you expressed concern is the Church still going to be doing that after you leave? The answer is no and you asked me to put it in writing and which I did.
Haney: Yes.
Soter: Before we started.
Haney: Thank you.
Soter: It is now in my handwriting and I am going to read it and ask if this change is acceptable to you. “IT IS UNDERSTOOD THAT UPON LEAVING THE SEA ORG MY CONSENT TO OPEN MAIL OR TRACK OR LISTEN TO PHONE CALLS OR INTERCEPT E-MAILS NO LONGER APPLIES.” Right?
Haney: That’s right.
Soter: Now I initialed that and I want you to initial it. It is on page 13.
Haney: OK, I signed it, there.
Soter: OK. Now you understand that this is an important document that has legal significance.
Haney: Yes.
Soter: And you are signing this completely, freely, no coercion at all?
Haney: Yeah.
Soter: All right. What I want to do is call in Mike Sutter and make sure that he witnesses your signature.
Haney: OK.
Soter: Then we’ll go through the other thing. Hey Mike, would you come in? I want to make sure that you are a witness to this signature.
Mike Sutter: OK, good.
Soter: Mike Sutter has entered the room. Mike, we’ve gone through the 13-page agreement and Valerie is delighted with it, aren’t you Valerie?
Haney: [Laughs]
Soter: OK, so I am going to ask you to initial each page and then sign on page 13 in front of the witness and then the witness will sign it as well.
Haney: Awesome.
Soter: Then we are going to go through the declaration.
Haney: Cool.
Soter: Mike, you can stay for the rest of the meeting.
Sutter: OK, good.
Soter: OK. So initial each page, each copy. We’re going to have two. The lower right corner would be best.
Haney: Lower right.
Soter: Right. This one, just sign it at the bottom.
Haney: OK.
Soter: Now do the same with the second one. We’re gonna, we’ll keep both copies per your request.
Haney: Yes.
Sutter: And the date, right here.
Haney: Oh. 13th?
Sutter: Yes.
Soter: Yeah. I also have a couple of declarations. I got a handwriting…
Haney: Yeah, that’s my handwriting.
Soter: All right, I’ve got one that’s in your handwriting that’s January 21, 2017, and this is your handwriting?
Haney: Yes.
Soter: You did this yourself?
Haney: I totally did that myself, all by myself. All by my lonesome in a room. Nobody had anything to do with except my thoughts and feelings on that paper.
Soter: And everything in here is true?
Haney: Legit.
Soter: Totally legit.
Haney: Totally legit. [Laughs]
Soter: Nobody gave you a script or anything?
Haney: [Laughing] No.
Soter: All right. And so we have this typed up, right?
Sutter: Yes.
Soter: One and we have another one here also January 21, 2017. Again same thing. Same thing?
Haney: Yes, same thing, that’s all me.
Soter: That’s all you too.
Haney: I wrote all that. By myself, all by myself.
Soter: So we have two of them? Is that right?
Sutter: That’s right, just two of them.
Soter: Let me just go through it, OK. You are 37 years old, of sound mind and body, you’re sure?
Haney: [Laughing] Maybe you know, a little tweaks there, maybe not so much [laughing]. You know, I am working on it.
Soter: OK.
Haney: Ok, I didn’t put that part in there, that’s a legal thing [still laughing].
Soter: All right. When you made these declarations, same thing, nobody forced you.
Haney: That’s right.
Soter: You weren’t under the influence of drugs or alcohol?
Haney: No.
Soter: You wrote this all yourself?
Haney: That’s right, yeah.
Soter: You were happy to do?
Haney: Yes.
Soter: Did anybody tell you, you had to do this in order to route out?
Haney: No.
Soter: So, you say here that you’ve been in the Sea Org for over 21 years and feel it is the toughest, dedicated and elite organization on the planet and that you are honored to have served 21 years with them.
Haney: That’s correct.
Soter: All that’s true?
Haney: Yeah.
Soter: And now you say here that Janet and her husband, Colm McLaughlin, left the Sea Org and that Colm’s not in good standing with the church and know that, Carl Light, Danny’s brother and Janet’s other son is also not in a good standing.
Haney: Yeah.
Soter: You say you do not wish to have any relationship of any kind with people that attack Scientology.
Haney: That’s right.
Soter: Or Scientologists?
Haney: That’s right.
Soter: That your present intention.
Haney: That is correct.
Soter: And you agree with the policy of the Church about not connecting with people who are attacking the Church?
Haney: Absolutely.
Soter: That’s your plan?
Haney: Well yeah, ’cause that’s my church, so they are attacking me when they are attacking the church, so they can go f— off.
Soter: So you told us already that your plan is to remain a Scientologist.
Haney: Yes.
Soter: All right. And the second declaration I have…
Haney: That’s the good…
Soter: You worked for RTC? For three years? From 2003 to 2006?
Haney: Yeah.
Soter: And you were a Steward there?
Haney: Yes.
Soter: And that’s the job you had immediately before you became a casting director?
Haney: Yes.
Soter: Is that something you enjoyed? Did you get to work with David Miscavige?
Haney: Yeah.
Soter: And how was that experience?
Haney: It was amazing. It was fabulous. It was, yeah.
Soter: What’s your opinion of Dave?
Haney: He’s…
Soter: Mr. Miscavige.
Haney: He’s amazing [laughing]. Mean yeah, he’s amazing, he’s definitely…
Soter: A good boss?
Haney: A fabulous, the BEST boss. The best boss you could possibly think of. So caring and you know, awesome but intense at the same time, you know, compassionate for me and others and I mean it’s in there. I wrote that.
Soter: You wrote that, those are your words?
Haney: Those are my words.
Soter: You mean every word of it?
Haney: Absolutely.
Soter: Now, did he ever mistreat you?
Haney: No.
Soter: Never, not once?
Haney: Not even half, one-one millionth of a hair dot.
Soter: Did you ever see Mr. Miscavige mistreat anybody else?
Haney: No.
Soter: So you have the highest respect for him?
Haney: Yes, he is the most amazing person I have ever met.
Soter: I don’t think I have any more questions. What I would like to do is take the signed agreement and hold it up to the camera, page by page so we can get a picture of that, in fact.
Haney: This is me, this is totally what I signed. I am all legit and cool with this stuff.
Soter: Ok, go through the last page to your signature on page 14
Haney: It is all OK. I read it all, nothing forged, it is all good.
Soter: OK.
Haney: Everything is all groovy.
Soter: Now I have your severance check here for $4,500. Now when I hand it to you, you are going to take a look at it, hold it up to the camera as well, we’re going to put it into an envelope and do you have any other questions?
Haney: Yeah, cool. Thank you. No, I don’t have any other questions.
Soter: With your permission, we’ll turn off the camera.
Haney: OK, cool.
Soter: Thank you. We want to wish you a good fortune.
Haney: Thank you.
Soter: Good health.
Haney: Thank you.
Soter: Thank you for your service to the Sea Org.
Haney: Yes, thank you.
Soter: Thank you.
Soter: We’re back on? I was reminded about an interview that was done on camera, I guess, this was in April of 2016, and I have the transcript of what was said on camera here. Would you take a look at it, make sure this is accurate. This is a reflection of what you said on camera during that interview.
Haney: Good, yeah, that’s what I said.
Soter: That was April 2016?
Haney: Yes.
Soter: Were the statements that you made true?
Haney: Yes.
Soter: OK, that’s it.
Haney: Good.
Soter: Thank you again.
Haney: OK.
Soter: Here’s your envelope.
Haney: Do you want me to sign that?
Sutter: It is already signed. That’s what you signed yesterday.
Haney: Oh, OK. OK, fine [laughs].



Bonus items from our tipsters

Dublin gets a customer!




Source Code

“There is a pool of thought, and all of a sudden one day a black spot appears in the middle of it, and the fellow can’t move. That incident you will find on most time tracks. Here was the pool of illusion, and if you ever want to see grief pour off a case, it is the individual’s loss of his home universe. They will tell you in various ways. You can take the most hard bitten preclear and run him back to a point of the track where all of a sudden the stars are falling down in his universe. He will cry and cry. He had a universe, he was probably one of several who invented this universe, and it was a perfectly good universe, and one day all of the stars fell down. Why? Somebody else got a universe invented, and it sort of overlapped and ate it all up. And that is what our MEST universe is doing, evidently. It is an expanding universe, and it just keeps on eating into everybody’s time and space.” — L. Ron Hubbard, June 23, 1952


Avast, Ye Mateys

“LA CONGRESS: That sure should be quite a Convention in LA. Looks like we made it on Flag. They had no program, two halls with two ‘Congress’ programs, different, going on in each. Tony is there by now getting it grooved in. They did great selling tickets and publicity. Originally they wanted me to do a colour film for them. You ever stand under enough light to shoot colour? It’s about 150 degree F fry. All joking aside, it’s impossible.” — The Commodore, June 23, 1970


Overheard in the FreeZone

“Many of you have lost perspective of what is Scientology’s role on this planet and its relation to the current state of affairs. Scientology is a ROUTE OUT. It is not just something to make you more able, more happy, more causative. It’s a ROUTE OUT. A route that if followed all the way to its end will bring about FREEDOM AND SALVATION. Something no one on this planet has right now no matter if OT VIII or not, Class XII or not, and something no one have had for eons.”


Past is Prologue

1997: Andreas Heldal-Lund reported that Scientology management consultant group U-MAN may be preparing actions actions him. “U-MAN is working on something I hear to make me stop me mailing their clients telling them about the connection to Co$. But they sure are slow! Maybe they will sue me instead? I got them and I’ll send out even more and longer letters to the rest of their clients!”


Random Howdy

“I have never advocated for violence or vandalism against the cult for the obvious reason it would turn them into martyrs.”


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

Criminal prosecutions:
Danny Masterson charged for raping three women: Next pretrial conference June 30. Trial scheduled for October 11.
‘Lafayette Ronald Hubbard’ (a/k/a Justin Craig), aggravated assault, plus drug charges: Last hearing was on January 18, referred to grand jury. Additional charges also referred to grand jury after January 5 assault while in jail.
Jay and Jeff Spina, Medicare fraud: Jay sentenced to 9 years in prison. Jeff’s sentencing to be scheduled.
Rizza Islam and other family members, Medi-Cal fraud: Readiness hearing scheduled for August 22 in Los Angeles
David Gentile, GPB Capital, fraud: Next pretrial conference set for September 19.
Yanti Mike Greene, Scientology private eye accused of contempt of court: Found guilty of criminal and civil contempt.

Civil litigation:
Baxter, Baxter, and Paris v. Scientology, alleging labor trafficking: Complaint filed April 28 in Tampa federal court.
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.’ Valerie’s motion for reconsideration denied on March 15.
Chrissie Bixler et al. v. Scientology and Danny Masterson: Appellate court removes requirement of arbitration on January 19, case remanded back to Superior Court. Next hearing scheduled for June 29.
Brian Statler Sr v. City of Inglewood: Third amended complaint filed, trial set for December 6.
Author Steve Cannane defamation trial: New trial ordered after appeals court overturned prior 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] The celebrity Scientologists going out on a bit of a media blitz right now
[TWO years ago] There’s no doubt Trump views COVID testing not as a solution but as a political problem
[THREE years ago] Scientology is hiring for a drug rehab whose location is a secret
[FOUR years ago] Scientology and celebs: ‘Miscavige had several of us catering to Tom Cruise behind the scenes’
[FIVE years ago] We have your Scientology ‘Maiden Voyage’ robo-call invitation, Los Angeles!
[SIX years ago] This is your brain on L. Ron Hubbard: Watergate, Scientology, and late-night radio
[SEVEN years ago] Reed Slatkin dies of heart attack — Scientologist served time as major Ponzi schemer
[EIGHT years ago] Marc Headley continues his Scientology tour, and Steve Hall describes his defection
[NINE years ago] Sunday Funnies: Scientology Gets Colorful!
[ELEVEN years ago] Scientology’s Enemies List: Are You On It?


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 2,704 days.
Katrina Reyes has not seen her mother Yelena in 3,209 days
Sylvia Wagner DeWall has not seen her brother Randy in 2,759 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his grandson Leo in 1,749 days.
Geoff Levin has not seen his son Collin and daughter Savannah in 1,640 days.
Christie Collbran has not seen her mother Liz King in 4,946 days.
Clarissa Adams has not seen her parents Walter and Irmin Huber in 2,815 days.
Carol Nyburg has not seen her daughter Nancy in 3,589 days.
Doug Kramer has not seen his parents Linda and Norm in 1,920 days.
Jamie Sorrentini Lugli has not seen her father Irving in 4,393 days.
Quailynn McDaniel has not seen her brother Sean in 3,709 days.
Dylan Gill has not seen his father Russell in 12,275 days.
Melissa Paris has not seen her father Jean-Francois in 8,194 days.
Valeska Paris has not seen her brother Raphael in 4,362 days.
Mirriam Francis has not seen her brother Ben in 3,942 days.
Claudio and Renata Lugli have not seen their son Flavio in 4,204 days.
Sara Goldberg has not seen her daughter Ashley in 3,240 days.
Lori Hodgson has not seen her son Jeremy and daughter Jessica in 2,955 days.
Marie Bilheimer has not seen her mother June in 2,480 days.
Julian Wain has not seen his brother Joseph or mother Susan in 835 days.
Charley Updegrove has not seen his son Toby in 2,010 days.
Joe Reaiche has not seen his daughter Alanna Masterson in 6,561 days
Derek Bloch has not seen his father Darren in 3,710 days.
Cindy Plahuta has not seen her daughter Kara in 4,030 days.
Roger Weller has not seen his daughter Alyssa in 8,885 days.
Claire Headley has not seen her mother Gen in 4,004 days.
Ramana Dienes-Browning has not seen her mother Jancis in 2,360 days.
Mike Rinder has not seen his son Benjamin and daughter Taryn in 6,663 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his daughter Spring in 2,769 days.
Skip Young has not seen his daughters Megan and Alexis in 3,167 days.
Mary Kahn has not seen her son Sammy in 3,043 days.
Lois Reisdorf has not seen her son Craig in 2,626 days.
Phil and Willie Jones have not seen their son Mike and daughter Emily in 3,121 days.
Mary Jane Barry has not seen her daughter Samantha in 3,375 days.
Kate Bornstein has not seen her daughter Jessica in 14,484 days.


Posted by Tony Ortega on June 23, 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, 1995-2021 Just starting out here? We’ve picked out the most important stories we’ve covered here at the Underground Bunker (2012-2021), 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


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