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What it was like watching Danny Masterson get handcuffed in Judge Olmedo’s court

Hey, gang. That was quite a day yesterday for your proprietor, and we have to admit we’re still just sort of recovering from it.

After we watched Danny Masterson get handcuffed by a deputy (who happened to be a woman) and then led away after being convicted on two counts of forcible rape (which carries a penalty of 30 years to life in prison), we went outside the courtroom and made our immediate reaction video.

A couple of people remarked that they were surprised we didn’t crack a smile during that video. But we were thinking about what these women have been put through, the three Jane Doe victims in the case, as well as the two other accusers who testified in the two trials, and also the other victims that we know about. It’s been such an ordeal for them, and so we weren’t in a smiling mood.

We then drove back to where we are staying in Burbank and immediately got onto a live video with Chris Shelton, who has been so supportive and helpful through this case. His insights as a former Sea Org official really are invaluable.


We know you’ve seen a tsunami of coverage of this case now, with outlets jumping on the news and a whole new audience of people looking to understand what happened. We’re just glad that the Underground Bunker audience has been with us throughout this six-year odyssey, and that they understand the intricacies of this case.

We know you have a lot of questions about what is going to be happening next for Masterson, for the discovery leak, for the sentencing, and we’ll be getting around to those things soon. But for now, we just wanted to make sure you got a chance to see our discussion with Chris, and to look over some highlights of where our coverage has taken us since 2017.


March 3, 2017: LAPD probing Scientology and Danny Masterson for multiple rapes, cover-up

May 9, 2017: Masterson hires Michael Jackson criminal defense attorney Tom Mesereau in rape probe




June 23: 2020: The key thing about Danny Masterson’s ‘DJ Donkey Punch’ nick is why he stopped using it

May 1, 2021: IN HER OWN WORDS: Danny Masterson accuser rips LAPD miscues in 2017 letter

June 5, 2021: Was David Miscavige behind Tom Mesereau’s biggest blunder at Danny Masterson’s prelim?

March 6, 2022: Never before published: Jane Doe 1’s plea to Scientology to report rape by Danny Masterson

Oct 5, 2022: Prosecution plans to call Lisa Marie Presley as witness at Danny Masterson rape trial



Technology Cocktail

“Making things a little more solid is just what it says. The preclear does not have to make things very massive, but he should be aware of an increase in the mass, weight and density of the structure of that which he is making more solid. This process will increase his reality on the Prelogics and reverse the flow of solids. It will remedy the preclear’s havingness and push him further up the Scale of Reality.” — L. Ron Hubbard, 1958



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 [42] John Sweeney


Source Code

“The guy for the last five years has been having trouble with his leg and he just sits in the auditing session with this hidden standard. He runs cows, crocs and alligators with great happiness. And at each moment after he runs the command, or every few commands, why, he kind of thetawise looks down at his leg, you see, to see whether or not that has been affected. “Well, alligators didn’t fit in that leg, so it must be something else,” you see? He’s running with his attention fixed on something else. And he broke his leg five or ten years ago and it has troubled him ever since. Well, you can assess that leg, and by the way, you can even assess it this way: His name, let us say, is John; you can assess ‘John’s leg,’ something of that sort. It’s always best to inspect the meter for a bit of reaction, but oddly enough, you don’t even have to, to do that. You just know this is a long-duration PI problem. The best way to do it is to make a list of terminals that the PC thinks it is. And then take a specific one, not take a general one. See, you don’t want this thing to be a profession. You don’t want it to be a profession, that’s all. Because he’ll run on it for quite a while if you take it as a general thing, see? ” — L. Ron Hubbard, June 1, 1961


Avast, Ye Mateys

“Mr. Sibersky will be arriving aboard in a special motorcade. Any persons who wish to welcome him aboard on arrival are invited to be on hand, observing the following: 1) Dress Neatly, 2) To avoid a mob scene — crew and students should be on the dock lined up by Org (FB, FAO, FSO) and by course (for full-time students) (FEBC, CL X). The gangway, and all accesses to gangways should be kept clear except as noted in FSO 391. 3) Be on time. When exact ETA is known this will be made known by HCO Messenger so people can assemble ahead of time.” — W/O Mike Douglas, Org Off FSO, June 1, 1971


Overheard in the FreeZone

“The being is a GodSoul, one coin, two operating mode sides. The Operating Thetan side is the God side. The preclear side is the Soul or human side. The difference between a human and an OT is only this: The OT says ‘I chose this.’ The Human says ‘I didn’t choose this.’ Above 26.0 on the tone scale the being is an OT operating in Creator mode. Below 26.0, the being is human operating in creature mode, whether he has a body or not.”



Past is Prologue

1998: Scientology attorney Kendrick Moxon threatened ex-member Charlotte Kates this week, accusing her of keeping a copy of the Philadelphia org’s mailing list. “At a time when you were acting for the Church of Scientology of Pennsylvania, you received a copy of the Church’s mailing list of parishioners for the purpose of inputting it into a computer for the Church’s use. Thereafter, you renounced membership in the Church, and purported to return the mailing list. This is to formally put you on notice that any retention of the mailing list constitutes theft, conversion and potentially other crimes and torts. Provision of the list or any part of it to third parties not authorized to receive the list also constitutes conversion, conspiracy and other crimes and torts.”


Random Howdy

“Scientology’s aesthetic muse is the Hallmark Channel filming on location in Branson, Missouri with some Space Opera whipping on top.”


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 co-opts ‘Top Gun’ success for its own fundraising needs
[TWO years ago] Does Scientology know that it’s a Truman Show? Let us show you their newest magazine cover.
[THREE years ago] Boarded up and shut down, Scientology struggles to stay relevant in uncertain times
[FOUR years ago] Scientology Lit: The verse stylings of L. Ron Hubbard, commodore of cool
[FIVE years ago] When the famous war protester met Scientology: A spiritual encounter in Los Angeles
[SIX years ago] Remembering another Scientology ‘warrior’ — with the help of Mark Bunker
[SEVEN years ago] Now that Scientology has a TV and radio complex, will it air what Scientology really is?
[EIGHT years ago] Listen to Jim Jones root for Scientology against Paulette Cooper in a 1978 Jonestown address
[NINE years ago] Sunday Funnies: Scientology’s latest attempts to get you amped up!
[TEN years ago] Here’s Some Photographic Proof that Scientology’s “Ideal Orgs” Are Killing the Church
[ELEVEN years ago] AUDIO: ‘Touch Me,’ Creepy Scientology Goon Repeatedly Tells Protester


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 3,047 days.
Katrina Reyes has not seen her mother Yelena in 3,552 days
Sylvia Wagner DeWall has not seen her brother Randy in 3,102 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his grandson Leo in 2,092 days.
Geoff Levin has not seen his son Collin and daughter Savannah in 1,983 days.
Christie Collbran has not seen her mother Liz King in 5,287 days.
Clarissa Adams has not seen her parents Walter and Irmin Huber in 3,158 days.
Doug Kramer has not seen his parents Linda and Norm in 2,263 days.
Jamie Sorrentini Lugli has not seen her father Irving in 4,710 days.
Quailynn McDaniel has not seen her brother Sean in 4,052 days.
Dylan Gill has not seen his father Russell in 12,618 days.
Melissa Paris has not seen her father Jean-Francois in 8,537 days.
Valeska Paris has not seen her brother Raphael in 4,705 days.
Mirriam Francis has not seen her brother Ben in 4,286 days.
Claudio and Renata Lugli have not seen their son Flavio in 4,547 days.
Sara Goldberg has not seen her daughter Ashley in 3,583 days.
Lori Hodgson has not seen her son Jeremy and daughter Jessica in 3,299 days.
Marie Bilheimer has not seen her mother June in 2,863 days.
Julian Wain has not seen his brother Joseph or mother Susan in 1,178 days.
Charley Updegrove has not seen his son Toby in 2,353 days.
Joe Reaiche has not seen his daughter Alanna Masterson in 6,904 days
Derek Bloch has not seen his father Darren in 4,035 days.
Cindy Plahuta has not seen her daughter Kara in 4,373 days.
Roger Weller has not seen his daughter Alyssa in 9,228 days.
Claire Headley has not seen her mother Gen in 4,347 days.
Ramana Dienes-Browning has not seen her mother Jancis in 2,703 days.
Mike Rinder has not seen his son Benjamin and daughter Taryn in 7,006 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his daughter Spring in 3,112 days.
Skip Young has not seen his daughters Megan and Alexis in 3,510 days.
Mary Kahn has not seen her son Sammy in 3,386 days.
Lois Reisdorf has not seen her son Craig in 2,969 days.
Phil and Willie Jones have not seen their son Mike and daughter Emily in 3,464 days.
Mary Jane Barry has not seen her daughter Samantha in 3,718 days.
Kate Bornstein has not seen her daughter Jessica in 14,827 days.


Posted by Tony Ortega on June 1, 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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