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Life as a Scientology ‘Flag auditor,’ bending the minds of Neil Gaiman and others

[Bruce Hines and Neil Gaiman, in a time gone by]

What was it like to be a Flag auditor? I imagine that most people would have no interest in finding out. But I figured I’d write something so there can be some record of it, possibly for future historians (tip of the hat to Chuck Beatty). It is an account of one aspect of the inner workings of the Church of Scientology. While there are many people who shared a similar experience to mine, I have seen very little written about such things. Here is my depiction of the day-to-day life of a person who became an auditor in a unique organization within the Scientology network.

So, firstly, for those who know little or nothing about the subject, what is a Flag auditor? An auditor is someone who practices Scientology’s one-on-one “processing” on another person. A PR term for auditing is “spiritual counseling.” I think this is a misnomer. In a session, an auditor is not counseling the person being audited. Counseling implies advice or suggestions or recommendations. An auditor asks specific prescribed questions or gives specific prescribed commands, and is not allowed to comment on the answers or results.

The name Flag refers to the Flag Service Organization, which is located on the Flag Land Base in Clearwater, Florida. The flagship of the flotilla of Scientology’s Sea Organization, the Apollo, stopped sailing around in 1975, and the personnel and units that had been on that ship set up shop in Clearwater. So, they kept the name, Flag.

In the promotional materials of Scientology, Flag was supposed to have the best auditors in the world. The catchphrase was, “The mecca for those who seek technical perfection.” This started on the Apollo, where the technical personnel were trained under the watchful eye of Scientology founder L. Ron Hubbard himself. This line of advertising continued when they moved to land, even though Hubbard was no longer present at the base. The idea was to be able to charge more for the auditing at Flag and to attract customers from all over the world.

For the uninitiated, I will clarify that Hubbard called the practices and procedures of Scientology — especially in auditing and training — as a technology. He wrote “technical” bulletins. It seems he was trying to make the subject appear scientific. It wasn’t.


It started in the latter part of 1980. I had been at Flag as a staff member of the Advanced Organization Los Angeles in order to get trained as an auditor. As I was nearing the end of that training, some people much higher on the org chart than I decided to make a swap. Some people who had been Flag staff were sent to AOLA, and in exchange, I would become Flag staff. It was sort of like sports teams making a trade. And, just like that, I was a Flag auditor.

Now, I admit that there was a certain amount of pride or ego in having that designation. The auditors at Flag, supposedly the best technical service organization in the world, were generally held in high regard. I had that position until 1987, which is when I got transferred to the International headquarters near Hemet, California. When I got there, my new boss was a man named Jeff Walker. He had been the Senior Case Supervisor FSO when I was there and had moved up to Senior Case Supervisor International. Not long after I had been at Int I said something to Jeff about Flag auditors being good. He replied, “You don’t believe their PR, do you?” I came to learn that the top technical people at Int did not have much regard for the technical delivery at Flag. So much for the cool status I thought I’d had.

In any event, back in 1980, I went to work in a “Hubbard Guidance Center” (HGC) at Flag, which is where paying public received their auditing. Those people were called “pc’s” (preclears, trying to attain the State of Clear) or “pre-OT’s” (those already Clear and on their way to becoming “operating thetans”). Most Scientology service organizations in the world have one HGC. Flag was so big that it had, as I recall, seven HGCs when I was there. Each HGC was headed by its own “Director of Processing.”

Each one also had its own Case Supervisors (C/Ses), who were technically senior to the auditors. There were also “technical services” personnel, who made sure that the auditors and C/Ses were supplied with paper, forms, manila folders, pens of various colors, paper clips, staplers, rubber bands, hand cream, antiperspirant, and other things needed for auditing.

Each HGC also had one other person, key to the whole operation, who held the post of “Board In-charge.” This position stood before an actual board and “ran” it. The board was about six feet by eight feet and stood on some kind of big easel or legs. Magnets stuck to it. There were many magnetic, color-coded, rectangular tags arranged on the surface. Names or words were written on the tags in some kind of erasable ink. In a column on the left were all of the auditors, usually five to eight of them, working at that time in that HGC. In a row to the right of each auditor there were tags for all of the people being audited, referred to as that auditor’s “lineup.” Smaller descriptive tags of different colors would then be placed next to the tags of the auditors and people being audited — things like “In Cramming” or “At lunch” or “In session” or “getting sessionable” (i.e. taking a nap or eating something), or “At the Registrar.”

The Board In-charge stood at the board and was kind of like a quarterback (for those familiar with American football). They answered the phone. They greeted people who entered the HGC and found out what they were there for. They sent runners to fetch pc’s or pre-OT’s for session. They had to answer questions from executives, who came to check on the HGC’s “production” (i.e. statistics). They had to appropriately deal with the paying public persons, who might be upset or happy. They had to control the auditors, who were, in a way, the stars of the show and could be a bit like primadonas.

The idea was to maximize the statistic of “Well Done Auditing Hours” (WDAHs), one of the key gauges for any service organization. That meant that there should be nothing that delayed the auditors from getting into session. So, the Board In-charge was supposed to make sure the pc’s and pre-OT’s were well-rested and well-fed; to try to keep the auditors from chatting with one another rather than writing up their session reports; to get the auditing folders coming out from the case supervisors’ office to the auditors right away; to make sure that the next pc or pre-OT on an auditor’s line-up was ready and waiting when the auditor came out of the “admin” room to go into session; to keep the paying public from having to wait for unnecessarily long periods of time; to “route” (with a “routing form”) people being audited to other places in the organization when needed (like to a Registrar to buy more auditing), and to take care of many other details. An experienced and capable Board In-charge was very valuable to the organization. They had to be able to juggle all of these things. Plus, money paid for auditing was usually the largest stream of income for a service org.

As an auditor in this operation, my aim was to audit as many well-done hours per week as possible. “WDAHs” was my individual statistic. I had to audit a certain number of hours per week in order to be in the ethics condition of “Normal Operation” or better. Above Normal were the conditions of “Affluence” and “Power.” One had to be in Normal or above for the week in order to be eligible for a rare day off or for “org awards” (like pizza and a movie in the auditorium on Saturday night).

The game was to minimize the time between sessions, as this time did not count on the stat. At the end of a session, the auditor packs the session worksheets and confidential materials into a locked briefcase, takes the pc or pre-OT to the “Examiner” (who checks to see if there is a floating needle on an E-meter), goes to the HGC, drops the folder for that pc or pre-OT, puts the folder for the next pc or pre-OT into the briefcase, goes out to the waiting area to greet the next pc or pre-OT, walks with them to the auditing room, gets them settled in a chair, goes through pre-session actions (which might include removing shoes, applying hand cream, switching to a different size of cans, adjusting the sensitivity of the E-meter, testing the basal metabolism of the pc or pre-OT, adjusting the room temperature, making sure they are comfortable, asking if there is any reason not to begin the session), and then finally starting the session. Only the time between the auditor saying “This is the session” and “End of session” is supposed to count.

The best way to minimize the time that didn’t count was to give long sessions. In the early days, Hubbard said that 2.5 hours was a good length for a session. A preclear could get a session per day at that length, Monday through Friday, and then have used 12.5 hours of the auditing they had paid for. This was why auditing was sold in 12.5 hour blocks, which was one “intensive.” Mr. Hubbard said that auditing is most successful when it is delivered intensively. That practice of selling auditing by the intensive continued into later years, even after organizational scheduling changed.

Originally, the idea was that an org would operate five days a week, eight hours a day, much like many businesses in the 1950s.

By the time I started auditing at Flag, things were drastically different. We were supposed to audit seven days a week (or six when we got a rare day off), from 9:00 in the morning to 10:00 in the evening, with short meal breaks. And after 10pm, I would usually be writing up the session reports. Those reports then went into the folder for that pc or pre-OT, to be delivered to the case supervisor, who would evaluate the session.

At some point in the 1960s, I think it was, Hubbard wrote that for an auditor to be in an ethics condition of Normal Operation, they had to audit at least 25 hours in that week. In the original org schedule, that would mean two 2.5-hour sessions per day for five days. Boy, that sounds so easy to me in comparison. Later, in the 70s, a “Flag Order” was issued that said Sea Org auditors had to produce 35 WDAHs per week to be in Normal. With the lengthened schedule, that would not have been difficult except for one fact. In the kind of auditing that I was mainly doing (called “NOTs,” for New Era Dianetics for OTs), the sessions were supposed to be short. The length might be ten or 20 or 30 minutes. The theory was that continuing the session beyond the ideal ending point would harm the pre-OTs case. If I had four or five pre-OTs on my lineup, which was common, I would usually give something like ten or even 15 sessions per day. That meant that there were a lot of trips back and forth between my auditing room and the HGC. I had to average five WDAHs a day in order to be in Normal. Then I could enjoy the benefits of being in that ethics condition or higher, and avoid the unpleasantness of being in a condition below that. Of course, the number of pre-OTs on my lineup and the lengths of sessions varied. But it was generally challenging.

Ideally, the HGC was supposed to run like a Swiss watch. The auditors would take their people into session, one after another, in what was called the “leapfrog system.” An auditor was supposed to work through their lineup and then start over with the first pc or pre-OT, over and over. The Board In-charge was supposed to have an auditor’s next person in the waiting area, a room adjacent to the HGC, so they could get into session as soon as possible. There was a constant coming and going of auditors and their pc’s or pre-OTs in a tightly controlled dance.


One thing did not help. When walking with the pre-OT or pc to the auditing room, usually we would start chatting. I generally like people and enjoy talking to them. These conversations often continued after we went into the auditing room. That increased the length of time before starting the session, thereby lowering my WDAHs. A Flag auditor was supposed to be all business and efficient. That wasn’t my strong suit. So, I often had a sense of guilt about wasting time and withheld that fact. I still was generally able to make my 35 hours, though I was not one of the consistently “high producing” auditors.

From time to time it came up that some auditor or another would count the session setup time, in order to boost their stats. When that got found out, the offending auditor would get in big trouble. The pc or pre-OT would then be paying extra for their auditing, maybe 20 or 30 or more minutes per day. At something like $400 – $600 per hour of auditing (depending on the year), that is not an insignificant amount. Even so, when an auditor got caught cheating in this way, the cheated money would not be recredited to the pc’s or pre-OT’s account.

Another big hurdle to making WDAH’s was cramming. All auditors at Flag, and at any Scientology organization, would sometimes get sent to cramming. This happens when the case supervisor reads through the session reports and adjudicates that the auditor made an error. Then the C/S writes a cramming order. The offending auditor would then have to go to the Cramming Section, get interviewed to nail down that auditor’s weaknesses, and then complete a program of re-studying materials, finding misunderstood words (“word clearing”), demonstrations, and drills. Then the auditor would attest to the completion of the cram, complete with a “success story,” and could then return to the HGC to resume auditing. A short cram might take an hour, a big cram about three hours, and rarely, if the errors were deemed to be serious, the correction could take all day.

One aspect of the cramming is that sometimes pc’s or pre-OT’s could get upset due to having to wait longer for their next session. Most of these people had flown in from afar, having taken time off work, to try to complete an auditing action, or a series of them. These actions marked their progress up the “Bridge to Total Freedom.” It could be quite problematic for them if they had to extend their stay — which would entail canceling flight reservations, paying more for food and accommodations (they were required to stay in costly Flag hotels), and deal with potential fallout back home. You see, they were not allowed to leave Flag until they were given the OK by higher-ups in the organization. Usually that OK would not be given if the pc or pre-OT were in the middle of an auditing action. The Board In-charge or the Director of Processing would try to calm such upset people down, and the auditor would sometimes have to deal with the upset in session.

When I got sent to Cramming, I would get “handled” by some, in retrospect, notable people. The first of these was a guy named Ron Norton. He later got promoted to Chief Officer of the FSO, and then to Captain FSO — Debbie Cook took over that post from him after he was sent to Golden Era Productions on the Int Base to hold an executive post there. After Ron, my usual Cramming Officer was Jesse Prince. He was an entertaining character with a great sense of humor. He was able to excel as one of very few African Americans in a lily-white cult (at least in those days), even getting promoted from Flag to the Religious Technology Center (the highest entity in all of Scientology) at the Int Base. Dennis Erlich also had to cram me from time to time, as did Spike Bush.

Spike was another intriguing guy, who at one time was the lead singer in a band that included future members of Blue Oyster Cult. He also ended up in RTC, though, the last I knew, he had been a groundskeeper at the Int Base for many years. Being an auditor came with some perks, as the activity of auditing was so lucrative to the organization. We got out of most musters and “all-hands” activites (like stuffing envelopes or making phone calls to prospective customers). Nonetheless, the job was stressful, at least for me. There was the constant pressure to produce WDAHs. It was sometimes a juggling act to try to keep all the people on my lineup happy — there could be six or more of them and often they wouldn’t like it if they only got a couple of short sessions in a day. There were also times when business was slow and with only two people on my lineup, by mid-afternoon they might have had as many sessions as they could easily tolerate for one day. Plus, while many pc’s and pre-OTs were easy to audit, some could be difficult and be in a sour mood much of the time — then I’d likely have to spend quite a bit of time in Cramming. In that world, if a session does not go well, it is always the auditor’s fault.

It all got significantly more stressful in about 1983. There was a shakeup at Flag, with the Captain, a guy named Carl Carlson, getting sent to the RPF (the Rehabilitation Project Force, the Sea Org’s prison program), if I am remembering things correctly. Also the Chief Officer, who is an executive under the Captain, was removed from post. A guy named Brian Patrick became the new Captain, which is when Ron Norton became the Chief Officer. The whole atmosphere of the org became more draconian in short order. These guys ran the org with threats and force. There was a lot of yelling and late nights. One of the changes was the requirement of making 42 WDAHs in order for an auditor to be in an ethics condition of Normal.

One day the auditing hours stat for the my HGC was running down for the week. The Director of Processing at the time was a lady named Nancy Knighten. She was a smallish woman from New York. Ron Norton was a large, athletic guy. During that time period he acted, in my opinion, like a stereotypical American jock. Ron was taking Nancy to task for her statistic (the sum of the WDAHs of all the auditors in her HGC).

He grabbed her by the arm, while angrily yelling, and shoved her back. She was able to keep her balance, but was visibly shaken.

Neither Ron nor Brian had always acted in this way. I had gotten to know Brian Patrick about three years earlier, when I gave him some “assist” auditing for an injury to his foot. At that time he was easy to get along with. When he got promoted to Captain the Mr. Hyde in him seemed to come out. I worked with Ron in many various capacities over the years, and I found him generally easy to get along with. But when those two guys took on these executive roles in the FSO, it signified the beginning of a new era of management. In Scientology parlance, one could say that they went into the “valence” of David Miscavige, who at that time was beginning to consolidate his power and would eventually take over Scientology. They were taking on his ruthless “beingness.”

In any event, my life as a Flag auditor went on for several more years, but with more stress and pressure. What made it more tolerable for me was that I got to know many interesting people. I don’t know how many hundreds of people I audited during those years. Many of them I have forgotten about. But some stand out in my memory.

One time on my lineup, at the same time, were two people. One had been an officer in the German army during World War II. He escaped from a group of POWs under Russian guard at the end of the war, and made it to an area where he could surrender to the Americans. After various travails, he ended up as a successful architect in Munich. The other person was a Jewish lady who had lived in a German-speaking area of Poland. Her family was murdered in a concentration camp, yet she, as a child, somehow survived. These same two people got into Scientology many years later, got up the “Grade Chart” to the level of “NOTs,” and could afford to go to Flag for auditing. Neither one knew of the other. Yet I was speaking with them both several times per day. A strange happenstance that might only occur in the odd goings-on in Scientology.

Another time I audited a person named Flo Barnett. She was the mother of Shelly Miscavige and Shelly’s sister, Clarisse, who was a staff member in Golden Era Productions. Shelly is, of course, married to David Miscavige and has been banished to a compound in the San Bernadino Mountains since 2005. Clarisse used to be married to John Brousseau. They were known as CB and JB. Both girls had been early Commodore’s Messengers. When I audited Flo, which was some time in the early 1980s, I did not know about them. I had not yet been to the Int Base. Flo mentioned that her daughters had high-up positions in Scientology, but it didn’t mean anything to me at the time. Flo herself became much better known in the Scientology world when she died a few years later under mysterious circumstances. It was ruled that she shot herself multiple times with a rifle.

Hmmm. Sounds hard to do. Tony wrote a great article about it in the Village Voice years ago.


Then, in the early 80s a person was assigned to me to audit by the name of Neil Gaiman. He was the son of two former high-ranking members of the Guardian’s Office at Saint Hill in England, known as GOWW back in the day. The WW part stands for World Wide and it was the international GO headquarters. The parents were David and Sheila Gaiman. Neil is now a well-known author. I don’t remember a lot about why I was auditing him. Was it on the “OT Drug Rundown” (which later was named New OT IV)?

That is possible. It was only for a few sessions. Since he had grown up in Scientology, he hadn’t taken recreational drugs nor many medications. On some people that Rundown can go on for some time. I do recall that he had already done the level of OT III, and so I had to use the techniques for dealing with “body thetans.” In retrospect it is interesting that he made the trip from England all the way to Florida. He was a pleasant person, somewhat reserved, and easy to get along with. The sessions were uneventful. I never heard anything further about him in the Scientology world. Since I got out of Scientology I have enjoyed some of his works.

Despite the pressures and the bizarreness of the Scientology world, I did enjoy the variety of people I audited. Some of them were or became known in their own right. These included: Jeff Pomerantz, who is the “announcer” at the beginning of all the annual international promotional events and a not-very-successful actor; Robert F. Lyons (or Bobby Lyons, as he was generally known), a somewhat more successful actor; Jeffrey Scott, the grandson of Moe Howard (of Three Stooges fame) and an Emmy winner for children’s animation; Wiebke Hansen, former Executive Director of the Hamburg org during its heyday, subject of the documentary Missing in Happy Valley, and later a set painter in Golden Era Productions (I audited her on the procedure for verifying the completion of New OT VII and she later was my “twin” on the Rehabilitation Project Force); Ron Moss, Chick Corea’s manager; Lil Linson, ex-wife of Art Linson (movie Producer) and mother of Jenny DeVocht (one of the venom-spewing wives on an installment of Anderson Cooper’s shows); Carol Masterson, the mother of Danny Masterson; and a particularly wealthy lady from Austria.

This last person was not well-known, but I remember her for some unusual behavior. When we entered the auditing room for our first session, she took off a pendant that she was wearing and proceeded to use it as a pendulum. She walked around the room while carefully watching her pendant. She was looking for force fields or energy beams or something. Evidently it would be bad if such existed in the room, as would be indicated by the pendant suddenly beginning to swing on its own. She decided that the room was OK. I probably should have had her sent to Ethics for engaging in “other practices,” but I didn’t.

I held that post for about six years. I audited hundreds of people — some for just a few sessions and some for many, many sessions over repeated trips to Flag. Some I got to know very well and they became friends. In the late 80s, a push came about for Sea Org members to not fraternize with public Scientologists. Then I was not supposed to have friends who weren’t in the Sea Org. Another Flag auditor, Rick Sheehy, got sent to the RPF because he stayed for a night with a public couple in LA when he was enroute to the Int Base.

Nonetheless, getting to know and interacting with all those people was a pleasant part of my Scientology experience. With only a few exceptions, they were good humans who meant well. They had unfortunately fallen for Hubbard’s pipe dream. None of them had special abilities or super powers. Very few even pretended to have experienced “OT phenomena.” They figured that if they just kept progressing up the Bridge they would eventually attain these higher states of being. I don’t know who among them still harbor such hopes or were able to escape Scientology’s grip. Those still in will be waiting in vain.

— Bruce Hines


Technology Cocktail

“The structure of the mind is totally composed of mental image pictures. I’m afraid the mind doesn’t produce any thoughts. The mind may be considered to have certain phonograph records. The phonograph record, as you know, doesn’t play unless you put a needle on the platter. Well, the thetan is the needle on the platter, and unless the record is played directly it doesn’t activate it.” — L. Ron Hubbard, 1957




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?

[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

— The first Danny Masterson trial and beyond

[18] Trial special with Chris Shelton [19] Trial week one [20] Marc Headley on the spy in the hallway [21] Trial week two [22] Trial week three [23] Trial week four [24] Leah Remini on LAPD Corruption [25] Mike Rinder 2022 Thanksgiving Special [26] Jane Doe 4 (Tricia Vessey), Part One [27] Jane Doe 4 (Tricia Vessey), Part Two [28] Claire Headley on the trial [29] Tory Christman [30] Bruce Hines on spying [31] Karen de la Carriere [32] Ron Miscavige on Shelly Miscavige [33] Karen de la Carriere on the L’s [34] Mark Bunker on Miscavige hiding [35] Mark Plummer [36] Mark Ebner [37] Karen Pressley [38] Steve Cannane [39] Fredrick Brennan [40] Clarissa Adams [41] Louise Shekter


Source Code

“I don’t think ever in my life I even ever held out my hand for a fee. I don’t ever mention it. I’ve even acted sometimes as Registrar for an organization that didn’t have anything to do with money and people would walk in occasionally and throw some money on the desk and I’d invoice it so they could have a receipt. I gave it to them so they could have a receipt, not so I could have any money. Now, that’s about the wildest look you ever saw! I remember auditing some people in the early days and we never talked about money and they got embarrassed after a while and they gave me several thousand dollars. That’s a reverse look, isn’t it?” — L. Ron Hubbard, March 30, 1965



Avast, Ye Mateys

“The hot water on A deck is tepid.”


Overheard in the FreeZone

“I see two main kinds of critics. Those that critique Scientology and want a reform, and those that critique Scientology and want to disappear it, or agree with disappearing it. I think it’s time to examine the systems on this planet, because Scientology is a system, and the real government running this planet is another system, and there are other systems like the pretended political systems governing ‘democratic’ countries. LRH stated that Scientology was the most ethical system on Earth. This statement only makes sense if it is compared with the other systems: Critics wanting to unmock (destroy) Scientology but fail to analyze the other systems in the same framework. So far, my analysis of the other systems (including the one running this planet) has shown that Scientology is the most ethical system of them all. The others fall far from being ethical at all.”


Past is Prologue

1998: Brent Stone reported the ongoing battle of the sprinklers during pickets at the San Jose org. “The sprinklers were turned on again just after I got there. Darlene got a bunch more pics of me and my car. Then the interesting part — seems like San Jose has inherited at least a couple of Sea Ogres.” John Ritson reported on the first picket at the Manchester, England org. About a dozen Manchester suppressives plus Dave Bird, yours truly and ‘Duke’ the lovable toy dog in water wings (in memory of Judge Swearinger’s drowned dog) turned up outside the Manchester ‘org’ with leaflets, placards, petitions, Xenu in full costume, and a real dog. After phoning Saint Hill for orders, and the standard phone call to the police the clams applied David Miscavige’s brilliant new squirrel strategy of failing to confront. So both sides of the road containing the ‘org’ were occupied by pickets loudly explaining the crimes of Scientology while the clams hid away. We had so many picketers that detachments were sent out to the main shopping areas to leaflet and collect signatures calling for a government inquiry into Scientology. Although this was the first picket in Manchester, public awareness was already high. Passers-by would say things like ‘Scientology – That’s that L. Ron Hubbard. He was a bastard, wasn’t he?’. One woman was glad to receive information because her friend’s husband was in contact with the cult. Others had been annoyed by body-routers.”


Random Howdy


“The first time I heard about people having to pay for being sec checked I was gobsmacked. OT 7’s have to get sec checked every 6 months to the tune of twenty grand or thereabouts. Imagine if the cops started charging people to be interrogated? Without a lawyer!”


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

Criminal prosecutions:
Danny Masterson charged for raping three women: Mistrial declared November 30. Retrial scheduled, jury selection begins March 29. Next pretrial hearing: Feb 16.
‘Lafayette Ronald Hubbard’ (a/k/a Justin Craig), aggravated assault, plus drug charges: Grand jury indictments include charges from an assault while in custody. Next pretrial hearing Feb 13.
Rizza Islam, Medi-Cal fraud: Trial scheduled for March 1 in Los Angeles
David Gentile, GPB Capital, fraud: Next status conference Feb 13.

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: March 15, 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.
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] Scientology is unhappy the Danny Masterson accusers are sticking up for Valerie Haney
[TWO years ago] Another Scientology success story: Real Water liver failure lawsuits proliferate
[THREE years ago] Scientology tries desperately to keep members from letting reality sink in during pandemic
[FOUR years ago] Leaving Scientology’s ‘Sea Org’ isn’t easy, and some turn to desperate measures
[FIVE years ago] Georgia police department closes its case on Arnie Lerma attempted murder-suicide
[SIX years ago] Dungeons & Dragons and Scientology collide: Can we get a saving throw on that engram?
[SEVEN years ago] Scientology leader David Miscavige in Atlanta on Saturday: Can you feel the excitement?
[EIGHT years ago] AUDIO LEAK: Hear a Scientologist being declared suppressive and facing the loss of her family
[NINE years ago] Sunday Funnies: These fliers should convince you to give all your cash to Scientology!
[TEN years ago] Independent Scientology: The Ballad of Captain Bill
[ELEVEN years ago]


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 2,984 days.
Katrina Reyes has not seen her mother Yelena in 3,489 days
Sylvia Wagner DeWall has not seen her brother Randy in 3,039 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his grandson Leo in 2,029 days.
Geoff Levin has not seen his son Collin and daughter Savannah in 1,920 days.
Christie Collbran has not seen her mother Liz King in 5,224 days.
Clarissa Adams has not seen her parents Walter and Irmin Huber in 3,095 days.
Doug Kramer has not seen his parents Linda and Norm in 2,200 days.
Jamie Sorrentini Lugli has not seen her father Irving in 4,677 days.
Quailynn McDaniel has not seen her brother Sean in 3,989 days.
Dylan Gill has not seen his father Russell in 12,555 days.
Melissa Paris has not seen her father Jean-Francois in 8,474 days.
Valeska Paris has not seen her brother Raphael in 4,642 days.
Mirriam Francis has not seen her brother Ben in 4,223 days.
Claudio and Renata Lugli have not seen their son Flavio in 4,484 days.
Sara Goldberg has not seen her daughter Ashley in 3,520 days.
Lori Hodgson has not seen her son Jeremy and daughter Jessica in 3,236 days.
Marie Bilheimer has not seen her mother June in 2,800 days.
Julian Wain has not seen his brother Joseph or mother Susan in 1,115 days.
Charley Updegrove has not seen his son Toby in 2,290 days.
Joe Reaiche has not seen his daughter Alanna Masterson in 6,841 days
Derek Bloch has not seen his father Darren in 3,972 days.
Cindy Plahuta has not seen her daughter Kara in 4,310 days.
Roger Weller has not seen his daughter Alyssa in 9,165 days.
Claire Headley has not seen her mother Gen in 4,284 days.
Ramana Dienes-Browning has not seen her mother Jancis in 2,640 days.
Mike Rinder has not seen his son Benjamin and daughter Taryn in 6,943 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his daughter Spring in 3,049 days.
Skip Young has not seen his daughters Megan and Alexis in 3,447 days.
Mary Kahn has not seen her son Sammy in 3,323 days.
Lois Reisdorf has not seen her son Craig in 2,906 days.
Phil and Willie Jones have not seen their son Mike and daughter Emily in 3,401 days.
Mary Jane Barry has not seen her daughter Samantha in 3,655 days.
Kate Bornstein has not seen her daughter Jessica in 14,764 days.


Posted by Tony Ortega on March 30, 2023 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, 1995-2022 Just starting out here? We’ve picked out the most important stories we’ve covered here at the Underground Bunker (2012-2022), 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


Tony Ortega at Rolling Stone


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