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What it was like to be an operative in Scientology’s massive spy apparatus

After reading about the death of Scientology’s legendary spymaster Jane Kember here at the Underground Bunker, former standout Scientology auditor Bruce Hines was motivated to write about what it was like to be an operative in the outfit Kember ran, the Guardian’s Office. Once again, Bruce has outdone himself.

In this week’s pieces about Jane Kember and the Guardian’s Office this week, Chris Owen referred to “thousands of operatives and agents worked worldwide to further the GO’s goals“ and Jon Atack mentioned “Branch One operatives who ran ‘covert data collection’.” For me, this brought to mind that, for a time, I was, rather ineptly, just such an operative. I hadn’t thought of it in this way prior to reading those articles.

This period of my Scientology adventures began in 1977. I had recently returned to Denver from Germany, where I had been staff in a mission. I more or less got settled, found a job (working in a tobacco shop located in a section of a very large drug store), and got “on lines” at the Denver Org. I purchased courses — the “Student Hat,” the “Method One Word Clearing Co-audit Course,” and the “Academy Levels” — and started my training. I went to the org according to a prescribed schedule several times a week to study. I won’t attempt to describe those courses, but they might be familiar to many readers who had some involvement in Scientology.

I didn’t get very far in progressing through all that training, however. Not long after completing the first course, my fiancée and I were pulled into an interview one evening. A man named Dave Barbosa, who was the head of Branch One in the Denver Guardian’s Office, saw us in a private room. He was recruiting us to work for the GO.


We would not officially be staff of the Guardian’s Office. Rather, we would work as volunteers. We would be known as “Guardian Assistant Scientologists” or GAS workers. Lord knows why I agreed to do this. It had to do with believing that this would be the most effective way to help Scientology clear the planet. Also, my fiancée was keen on the idea. I really did make several dumb decisions through the years when it came to Scientology.

One of the very odd things about undertaking this activity was that my fiancée and I had to pretend that we had left Scientology and given it up for good. We informed our families and friends that Scientology was no longer for us and that we would not be pursuing it ever again.

The work we would be doing was super secret. No one could know, other than Mr. Barbosa and a couple of other people who were also GAS workers. We even had to sign a waiver that stated that we would be expelled from the “church” forever if we ever told anyone about any of our work as GASes. That was a scary big deal at the time. There would be no pay nor any exchange at all for our work. What was I thinking?

Dave Barbosa was a very unusual guy. He could be charming and entertaining. He had gone to the University of Denver and gotten a degree in music. He told us that as part of qualifying for graduation in that major, he had to compose a piece of music and have it performed before an assemblage of other students. His composition included a person playing a melody on a clarinet, two guys wearing wrestling attire walking onto the stage carrying a mat, rolling the mat out on the floor, and proceeding to wrestle, all while the clarinet kept going. I honestly don’t know if that story was true, as Dave turned out to not be honest all of the time. Then he had worked for a while playing the banjo in a Shakey’s Pizza Parlor. I don’t know how he got involved in Scientology. On occasion we went to his house, which was a small, rented bungalow. It was an absolute pig sty. There were dirty clothes and stuff scattered all around and it smelled. He lived there with his wife, who was part-time staff at the org and also worked in a Dunkin’ Donuts. They depended mainly on her income to pay rent and buy food. Neither one of them slept much, and they both often looked exhausted. Dave ended up getting declared as a suppressive person, not because he left Scientology, but because of things he did while working for the GO. I am not sure what he did that got him in such trouble.

As part of the recruitment process, Barbosa employed a tactic to impress upon us just how dangerous and widespread and resourceful the enemies of Scientology were. After our initial meeting in the org, he said he wanted to come to our apartment to continue talking about us working for him. We lived in a very small unit in the basement of a house in Denver. As we were sitting in our recruitment discussion, there was a sudden loud noise just outside our door. Dave immediately jumped up and ran out the door as if chasing somebody. We followed him out and found him looking around. He explained that someone had evidently thrown a rock at the place we lived, hitting the wall, which showed that our enemies were onto us and trying to intimidate us. I’m sure he got another GAS worker to throw the rock, though he never admitted it. We then went back inside, where he had us listen to the handset of our phone (there were only land lines in those days). I can’t remember if we listened to the dial tone or dialed a single digit or what, but we could hear faint clicks in the background. Barbosa said that it was evidence that our phone had been tapped. I am pretty sure that one would have heard the same clicks on any phone.

In any event, having been shown “proof” of the dire necessity to defeat the suppressives determined to stop Scientology, who were minions of some secret international cabal, we started doing things for B1, as it was called. We kept our day jobs, but started meeting with Dave a few times a week on weekends or during evening hours, sometimes very late at night. Over the period of about a year and a half, he assigned us various spy-like tasks, which we endeavored to carry out.

It is interesting to me that, looking back, I knew nothing about the whole Snow White thing during my time as a GAS worker. I was unaware of the FBI raids that took place on July 8, 1977 in Los Angeles and Washington DC, even though I believe there was some coverage in the national news media. It was an example of how Scientology kept negative information from its members, and how activities were carried out on a need-to-know basis.

Dave somehow acquired a small office space, which had earlier been a print shop, in an insignificant strip mall in one of the Denver suburbs. I believe he had finagled some Scientology connection into letting him use it for a time. The place was mostly empty, but it did have a working photo copy machine, a pretty nice one for that time. We used it to make official-looking documents and fake identification cards.

One of the things we learned was that an agent performing an operation had to have a “suitable guise.” At times we pretended to be reporters for a small local newspaper. I don’t remember the name we used for this supposed publication. But we did have identification cards with that name, our names, small photos of us, a fake logo, and plastic lamination. These cards were created on a typewriter — not the kind with a ribbon, but an IBM Selectric that made letters that looked like they were printed. A polaroid photo and logo were then glued onto the typed page in appropriate spots. Next, a photo copy of the sheet was made. Then the “card” was carefully cut out and encased between clear, plastic sheets with adhesive on one side. Finally, the plastic was trimmed. It was a primitive process, but the resulting card looked pretty convincing.

One time there was a city official who worked for the Denver revenue office. He had expressed some negative opinions about Scientology and how they should pay taxes or something like that. I’m not sure how that was known (maybe he was quoted in the newspaper?), but he became a target of B1. I went and visited the man in his city office, armed with a cassette recorder and my fake ID card, purportedly to interview him for an article in our sham local newspaper. I asked him a bunch of questions about his job, about how he came to work in the tax office, and I tried to get as many personal details about his life that I could. I was engaging in “covert data collection.” I believe that someone else would then take the information I had gathered and use it for “overt data collection” (like checking public records or college transcripts) to try to find out things about the man that might be used against him. Everything learned about that guy would go into a file on him, which could be then cross-referenced to files on other people or organizations.

Another time, my fiancée and I went to the Fort Logan psychiatric hospital, the Colorado Mental Health Institute, located in south Denver, to perform “volunteer work.” As I recall, my fiancée had phoned them and portrayed us as two do-gooder types who wanted to help out in the hospital’s efforts to treat the mentally ill. We went there a couple of times and sat in a room typing some kind of records, that existed on cards, onto a form. We did that a couple of times for a couple of hours. The idea was to possibly earn enough trust to gain access to potentially sensitive (and damaging) information. That operation went nowhere and we stopped going there.

Another time I was asked to go the main branch of the Denver Public Library, where copies of the local newspapers were made available. There had been some articles critical of Scientology. I was supposed to check whether the library had copies of those papers. I saw that they did. When I reported back to Mr. Barbosa, he reprimanded me for not stealing all copies of newspapers that had any negative information. I responded that I wouldn’t do anything illegal. He said that he would have stolen them. This was a negative point against me in his eyes.

Another time my fiancée and I went to the home of the head of Colorado Psychiatric Society, a state-level organization affiliated with the American Psychiatric Association, with which Scientology had clashed. I don’t think I ever felt more nervous. We sat in a car just up the street from his house, working up the courage to go up and ring the door bell. Finally we did that. He wasn’t expecting us. He invited us in and had us sit on a couch opposite him. As at the hospital, we claimed to be concerned citizens who wanted to volunteer to help out the CPS in their important activities. Kind of dumb, really. Barbosa wanted us to stage a fight once we got inside, in which I would get mad at my fiancée for having such a stupid idea and then she would act all sad. But I couldn’t bring myself to do that. As I said, I was a rather inept operative. The doctor listened to us, maintaining a pleasant demeanor. Once we were done with our pitch, he
said that they didn’t need assistance, and politely ushered us out. So much for that. I found out later that he suspected us of working for Scientology.


Then there was a guy, whose name I’m forgetting, who didn’t like Scientology. I’m not sure what his experience had been with it. He used to stand outside venues where the local org put on promotional events with picket signs. The local B1 unit already had someone who had formed something of a relationship with this person, but under false pretenses. He worked as a projectionist in a movie theater in downtown Denver.

My task was to go visit him at the theater, pretending to be a college student who was getting information for a paper that I was writing about the movie industry. He agreed to meet with me and invited me into the projection booth while he was working. I’d never seen that before and it was actually kind of interesting. He showed me how two large projectors worked in tandem, with one big reel starting up on one of them just when the reel on the other one ran out. In retrospect, he seemed to be a decent guy. I didn’t say anything about Scientology. But I did ask questions, and took notes, to get information about him. He happened to show me some signs that he had already made in preparation for his next picket, which he had stored right there in the booth. What I learned was deemed to be useful to Barbosa.

The picket guy lived in a house in Manitou Springs, which is a small town in the foothills west of Colorado Springs, near Pike’s Peak. I and another guy doing GAS work were instructed to drive down there from Denver on a surveillance operation. We were in separate cars. I parked my green VW Beetle a ways up the street from his house in one direction and my cohort parked his vehicle in the other direction. Of course, in those days there were no mobile phones, so we couldn’t text or call. We sat in our cars a couple of hundred yards apart all night long and into the next morning. If I recall correctly, there was some Scientology event the next day. The idea was to possibly follow him if he went somewhere and at least to intimidate him if he became aware of our presence. I think we were pretty obvious sitting in cars out on the street.

All that happened was that the guy came out of his house in the morning carrying a box, which he put in the trunk of a car. He closed the trunk and then walked back inside. I’ve always wondered what that was about. It seemed somehow that he was aware of us. Nothing else happened and we eventually drove back home. I don’t know if the B1 folks felt that anything had been gained.

The last operation I can remember had to do with “ARM” (the anti-religion movement). That was a term back in the 70s for people who were opposed to the new religious groups that had gained popularity. These included the Moonies, the Hare Krishnas, the Divine Light Mission, Scientology, and many others. The ARM people were not against religions in general, though cults like Scientology claimed that ARM targeted them because ARM supposedly opposed the First Amendment. The practice of deprogramming was associated with them. There was a minister of some church, in California I think, who was one of the prominent spokespeople for ARM. He travelled around and gave speeches or sermons about the dangers of these new cults and how they were a threat to established religions. One evening he was giving a talk at a large Presbyterian church in the southwestern part of the Denver area. I was tasked to attend this service and take note of what he said. It felt odd sitting there in the pews, which I hadn’t done since I was a kid. I remember feeling a bit shaken in my Scientology beliefs by some of the things he said, though I never would have admitted that.

After the service, I hurried out to the parking lot and met up with that other B1 worker, who had been waiting in my car. We watched and waited until the visiting minister came out of the church and got into a car with a couple of other people. We followed him, as instructed. He went to a nearby restaurant, where he sat down to a meal, joined by additional folks who had been at the service and arrived in a separate car (possibly some of the event organizers?). My B1 friend and I had to wait quite some time for that get-together to be over. Finally, the minister came out of the restaurant, got into the car he had been driving, accompanied by a couple of others, who must have been assistants who travelled with him, and drove off. Again we tried to tail him.

We were supposed to find out what hotel he was staying in. We tried not to be obvious. But we must have been more obvious than I thought, as he soon out-smarted us. The minister must have been used to being followed, as he knew a trick for losing a tail. He got onto a freeway (I-70) and drove towards the intersection with the 6th Avenue Freeway. I was driving and tried to keep him in view while not getting too close. By this time it was late at night and there weren’t a lot of cars on the road. Right before the off ramp at the intersection, the car carrying the minister pulled off the freeway and stopped. I couldn’t then also pull off and stop behind him, as that would have been too obvious. I had to choose between staying on I-70 or taking the ramp onto the 6th Avenue Freeway. Which ever route I chose, the minister’s car simply went the other way. So, we lost him.

Those are the things I remember about my time as a Guardian’s Office operative, in no particular order. I don’t believe that I did anything illegal in that capacity. Barbosa told us that it is not illegal to lie, nor to falsely represent oneself in those kinds of situations. That seemed true to me at the time, and it still does, I guess. Nonetheless I regret it, as I don’t think it was right. In retrospect it is embarrassing. In any event, in September 1978 Barbosa kicked me out of his GAS group. There was not a lot of explanation given. One factor was that during my GO work, I enrolled in the University of Colorado to get a degree in electrical engineering. I took advantage of the GI Bill in my status as a military veteran. I had completed courses in the summer semester of that year and had enrolled in more courses for the fall. This showed, in Barbosa’s eyes, that I was not totally with the program, not committed enough, or in their parlance, that I was “other-intentioned.” That would indicate that I was ethically lacking. Also, I learned that he thought I asked too many questions — as if I were a plant trying to gather intelligence. That is kind of ironic, considering that all he did was try to plant people to gather intelligence. And maybe he didn’t like that I was unwilling to break the law, I’m not sure.

Having been reminded of Scientology’s network of spies this week, I thought it might be interesting to depict some aspects of its operation. The Office of Special Affairs, the replacement of the Guardian’s Office, operates on the same policies. While I haven’t heard about something like the GAS workers since the GO was disbanded, Scientology does still employ spies and carry out covert data collection. Though my participation turned out to be inconsequential, I think it provides yet another glimpse into the fruitcake world of that “church.”

— Bruce Hines


Continuing our year in review: The stories of June 2022

The month started off with the California Supreme Court refusing to dismiss rape charges against Danny Masterson ahead of his 2022 trial.


Another sign that Scientologists are moving from Los Angeles to Clearwater, Florida was the relocation of Hollywood celebrity Michael Peña and his wife Brie Shaffer. (Brie was also a potential witness in the upcoming Danny Masterson trial.)

Joy Villa was spotted staffing a Scientology table in a public square in Brighton, England. What was the darling of the MAGA movement doing out there? We never did a confirmed reason.

We published a transcript of an interview that Valerie Haney gave on her exit from scientology in 2016. Does it prove Scientology’s case, that Valerie willingly signed an agreement not to sue the church, or does it prove the opposite?

After Roe v. Wade was struck down by the Supreme Court, we discussed with Claire Headley how it might affect Scientology, which encourages Sea Org women to have abortions.

A LOOK BACK AT JUNE 2021: An indication that Scientology was calling the shots in Danny Masterson’s defense, and why he needed to sell his Hollywood Hills home in a hurry. Video leak of a crazy Austin fundraiser. The Bunker lost Puget Buckeye. And then the world lost Ron Miscavige.

A LOOK BACK AT JUNE 2020: Scientology orgs were being boarded up for questionable reasons. Danny Masterson’s stepdad Rusty Tweed was sued for running a Ponzi scheme. Mark Bunker got bizarre records requests from Scientology. LA’s DA finally charged Danny Masterson for three rapes. And we pointed out there was a good reason he changed his DJ name in 2004, the year one of his alleged rape victims went to the LAPD. Derek Bloch wrote us another killer piece, on disconnection. And why Tom Mesereau’s private investigator might become a key witness for the prosecution>

A LOOK BACK AT JUNE 2019: Chris Owen demonstrated how L. Ron Hubbard sought to prop up the apartheid government in South Africa in 1960s. Mark Bunker announced that he was going to run for city council in Clearwater. A national legal team starts its onslaught on Scientology, filing a lawsuit on behalf of Valerie Haney. Journal claims L. Ron Hubbard never falsely claimed to have a college degree, so we published a letter to prove it. HowdyCon took place in our ancestral homeland, Los Angeles. We didn’t get invited to Tommy Davis’s wedding.

A LOOK BACK AT JUNE 2018: Chris Owen uncovered a previously unpublished and damning testament by the ‘world’s first true Clear,’ John McMaster. Actress Erika Christensen dropped a few interesting details in a conversation with Dax Shepard. HowdyCon was held in Chicago, and we revealed the cover of our new book with Paulette Cooper. Actor Christian Stolte was the star of the show with a song about Scientology. Sunny Pereira had three big pieces about a shooting in Portland, more about how children are raised in Scientology, and another slice of Sea Org horror.

A LOOK BACK AT JUNE 2017: Leah Remini’s stepmother Donna Fiore was being hounded by Scientology for dirt on her stepdaughter. Handbag designer Rebecca Minkoff stepped up her support of Scientology front groups. Marty Rathbun started posting attack videos against his former allies, prompting responses from your proprietor, Gary Morehead, Victoria Britton, Paul Haggis, and John Brousseau. And HowdyCon 2017 went down in Denver.

A LOOK BACK AT JUNE 2016: We marked Muhammad Ali’s passing with a look at a Scientology video he was in. We published Dani Lemberger’s “declare.” And we broke the news that Leah Remini was shooting a television series.

A LOOK BACK AT JUNE 2015: We wrote about that time Jim Jones talked about Paulette Cooper from his Guyana compound. We wrote about a person in our book, the inspirational Len Zinberg. We did some live-blogging from the epic Toronto conference organized by Jon Atack. We broke the news that Scientologist Ponzi schemer Reed Slatkin had died. Some poor schlub went to prison after trying to hack Mike Rinder and your proprietor on behalf of Scientology. And we had our biggest audience yet with Paulette Cooper in Clearwater, the belly of the beast.

A LOOK BACK AT JUNE 2014: Another distressing disconnection story: Where is Sami Sterne? A rare audio recording captures L. Ron Hubbard and his wife Mary Sue using an e-meter to come up with the space cooties portion of Scientology. Why we think Original OT 8 is not a hoax — the George White story.

A LOOK BACK AT JUNE 2013: Channel 4’s documentary about Marty Rathbun, Scientologists at War, Neil Gaiman’s Scientology history behind his novel The Ocean at the End of the Lane, and Joe Childs on Denise Gentile’s blunts.



Technology Cocktail

“Scientology is knowledge. That’s all Scientology is. The word ‘Scientology’ means knowledge, that’s all it means. Scio means knowing in the fullest sense of the word. Many people believe that this is named after science. No, it’s scio, knowing in the fullest sense of the word, studying how to know in the fullest sense of the word, but this is the same word as Dharma, which means knowledge; Tao, which means the way to knowledge; Buddhism, which means the way to spiritual knowledge. It’s an old word, a very old word. It happens to contain within it today possibly the bulk of what is knowable in terms of theory, that is immediately knowable to anybody anywhere.” — L. Ron Hubbard, 1954



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 as Danny faces a potential sentence of 45 years to life in prison. NOW WITH TRIAL INDEX.


THE PODCAST: How many have you heard?

— The Underground Bunker Podcast

[1] Marc Headley [2] Claire Headley [3] Jeffrey Augustine [4] Bruce Hines [5] Sunny Pereira [6] Pete Griffiths [7] Geoff Levin [8] Patty Moher [9] Marc Headley [10] Jefferson Hawkins [11] Michelle ‘Emma’ Ryan [12] Paulette Cooper [13] Jesse Prince [14] Mark Bunker [15] Jon Atack [16] Mirriam Francis [17] Bruce Hines on MSH

— SPECIAL: The best TV show on Scientology you never got to see


[1] Phil Jones [2] Derek Bloch [3] Carol Nyburg [4] Katrina Reyes [5] Jamie DeWolf

— SPECIAL: Your Proprietor’s updates on the Danny Masterson trial

[1] Sep 21 [2] Sep 28 [3] Oct 4 [4] Oct 10 [5] Oct 11: Day One [6] Oct 12: Day Two [7] Oct 13: Day Three [8] Oct 17: Day Four [9] Oct 18: Day Five [10] Oct 19: Day Six [11] Special interview with Chris Shelton, Oct 19 [12] Oct 20: Day Seven [13] Oct 21: Day Eight [14] First week in review, with Jeffrey Augustine [15] Oct 24: Day Nine [16] Oct 25: Day Ten [17] Oct 27: Day Eleven [18] Oct 28: Day Twelve [19] Second week in review, with Jeffrey Augustine [20] Halloween special [21] Nov 2: Day Thirteen [22] Nov 3: Day Fourteen [23] Nov 4: Day Fifteen [24] Third week in review [25] Nov 5, Saturday special [26] Nov 6, Sunday special [27] Nov 7, Day Sixteen [28] Lisa Marie Presley breaking news [29] Nov 8, Day Seventeen [30] Nov 9, Day Eighteen [31] Nov 10, Day Nineteen


Source Code

“A good manager or executive works hard hour by hour to keep the show on the road but always with a long-term view as well. And he intends that org and staff will prosper. The auditor in Post Purpose Clearing will get a lot of glib answers. The stats, the honest ones, and the true long-term performance of the executive, measured by the health of his zone of responsibility, tell the tale and should be consulted when in doubt.” — L. Ron Hubbard, December 26, 1981


Avast, Ye Mateys

“SECOND DANGER FORMULA: (1) So that the Ship can get upgraded to EMERGENCY the following actions are to be done as indicated: (1:1) All Divisional Heads are requested to do a full star-rate check-out with the STO on the ‘Second DANGER Formula,’ (HCO PL 07 Feb 70, steps A-G). Time Machine Order 48 hours. (STO to inform FMAA at the end of 48 hrs of those who have checked-out.) (1:2) All Divisional Heads are requested to submit a complete and realistic application of the ‘Second DANGER Formula’ for their Division in writing to 3rd Mate, (CC). Time Machine Order of one week. (2) The intention is that the ship will be upgraded to EMERGENCY for the New Year, (AD 21).” — R.S. Prior, FMAA, December 26, 1970


Overheard in the FreeZone


“OT Inelia Benz is already working with her OT Committee to create the reality for a new civilization. She calls them ‘First Instant Manifestators.’ LRH created in the 60’s the goal for OT Committees to make Planet Earth an OT base. Bill Robertson’s Ron’s Org OT Committee created the New Civilization Game in the mid 80’s, to create the new reality. Where are the Independent Scientology OT Committees on this regard?”


Past is Prologue

2001: The December, 2001 issue of Impact Magazine published a speech by Mike Rinder, the director of the Office of Special Affairs, at the annual IAS meeting. “Officials from the Moscow prosecutor’s office called in so-called experts from the Serbski Psychiatric Institute, notorious for its treatment of dissidents during Soviet days. Finding nothing, they invented a claim that our organizations were engaged in financial fraud, taking ‘creative accounting’ to criminal extremes to create fake evidence. Then they issued outrageous tax assessments and opened a criminal case against the Mission of Moscow. In March this year it all came to an end. The court declared the activities of our mission religious and exempt from tax, found the
prosecutor guilty of extensive violations of criminal law, the governments cases were dismissed and the prosecutor was ordered to pay all our costs. Within a few short years, lawyers, justice officials, city and regional government personnel and every high level judge in the nation will truly understand Scientology. Because last month, the first official course on Scientology, using our books as the curriculum, became part of theology studies in every university and all institutes of higher learning in Russia!”


Random Howdy

“You’re better off trying to kick dope or booze at home than going to a Narconon. It would be safer and a hell of a lot cheaper. For 100 bucks you could get some benzos, Imodium, and prilosec and you’d be better off and safer than going to a Narconon cold turkey death camp.”


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

Criminal prosecutions:

Danny Masterson charged for raping three women: Mistrial declared November 30. Status conference scheduled January 10, retrial scheduled March 27.
‘Lafayette Ronald Hubbard’ (a/k/a Justin Craig), aggravated assault, plus drug charges: Grand jury indictments include charges from an assault while in custody. Plea deadline scheduled for December 16.
Jay and Jeff Spina, Medicare fraud: Jay sentenced to 9 years in prison. Jeff scheduled to time served with three years supervised release, restitution of $9.7 million.
Rizza Islam, Medi-Cal fraud: Trial scheduled for March 1 in Los Angeles
David Gentile, GPB Capital, fraud: Next pretrial hearing December 9.
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, Scientology moving to compel arbitration. Plaintiffs filed amended complaint on August 2. Hearing November 17 to argue the arbitration motions, awaiting ruling.
Valerie Haney v. Scientology: Forced to ‘religious arbitration.’ Selection of arbitrators underway. Next court hearing: February 2, 2023.
Chrissie Bixler et al. v. Scientology and Danny Masterson: Appellate court removes requirement of arbitration on January 19, case remanded back to Superior Court. Stay in place at least through February 7.
Brian Statler Sr v. City of Inglewood: Case settled ahead of scheduled Dec 6 trial.
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.



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] INSIDER: What the pandemic and its protocols have looked like from inside Scientology
[TWO years ago] Is David Miscavige boarding up orgs in anticipation of inauguration riots?
[THREE years ago] Scientology has its dukes up for Boxing Day, but we’re still thinking of warmer days
[FOUR years ago] Nation of Islam takes a bigoted swipe at Leah Remini and the ‘Jews’ behind her show
[FIVE years ago] 2017: In June, Rathbun became Scientology’s attack dog, but we got mile high in Denver
[SIX years ago] Why would an academic speak up for Scientology? Dr. Stephen Kent has an answer.
[SEVEN years ago] On Boxing Day, we remember the last time Scientology tried to knock out the press
[EIGHT years ago] Give Scientology $1,000 and all you’ll get is this lousy T-shirt
[NINE years ago] Scientology’s 2013 in review: Madness set in as spring arrived!
[TEN years ago] Narconon Georgia Facing Closure: It Shouldn’t Have Taken a Death
[ELEVEN years ago] Scientology Video of the Year: The Vote Is In!


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 2,890 days.
Katrina Reyes has not seen her mother Yelena in 3,395 days
Sylvia Wagner DeWall has not seen her brother Randy in 2,945 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his grandson Leo in 1,935 days.
Geoff Levin has not seen his son Collin and daughter Savannah in 1,826 days.
Christie Collbran has not seen her mother Liz King in 5,131 days.
Clarissa Adams has not seen her parents Walter and Irmin Huber in 3,001 days.
Doug Kramer has not seen his parents Linda and Norm in 2,106 days.
Jamie Sorrentini Lugli has not seen her father Irving in 4,579 days.
Quailynn McDaniel has not seen her brother Sean in 3,895 days.
Dylan Gill has not seen his father Russell in 12,461 days.
Melissa Paris has not seen her father Jean-Francois in 8,380 days.
Valeska Paris has not seen her brother Raphael in 4,548 days.
Mirriam Francis has not seen her brother Ben in 4,129 days.
Claudio and Renata Lugli have not seen their son Flavio in 4,390 days.
Sara Goldberg has not seen her daughter Ashley in 3,426 days.
Lori Hodgson has not seen her son Jeremy and daughter Jessica in 3,141 days.
Marie Bilheimer has not seen her mother June in 2,706 days.
Julian Wain has not seen his brother Joseph or mother Susan in 1,021 days.
Charley Updegrove has not seen his son Toby in 2,196 days.
Joe Reaiche has not seen his daughter Alanna Masterson in 6,747 days
Derek Bloch has not seen his father Darren in 3,878 days.
Cindy Plahuta has not seen her daughter Kara in 4,216 days.
Roger Weller has not seen his daughter Alyssa in 9,071 days.
Claire Headley has not seen her mother Gen in 4,190 days.
Ramana Dienes-Browning has not seen her mother Jancis in 2,546 days.
Mike Rinder has not seen his son Benjamin and daughter Taryn in 6,849 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his daughter Spring in 2,955 days.
Skip Young has not seen his daughters Megan and Alexis in 3,353 days.
Mary Kahn has not seen her son Sammy in 3,229 days.
Lois Reisdorf has not seen her son Craig in 2,812 days.
Phil and Willie Jones have not seen their son Mike and daughter Emily in 3,307 days.
Mary Jane Barry has not seen her daughter Samantha in 3,561 days.
Kate Bornstein has not seen her daughter Jessica in 14,670 days.


Posted by Tony Ortega on December 26, 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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