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


Secrets of Scientology’s most secretive branch, part 2: CST’s property holdings

[The spaceship-like entrance to Scientology’s northern California underground vault]

We’re always encouraged when an Underground Bunker reader takes a deep dive into Scientology’s arcane depths, and this time a reader has come forward with some eye-opening research on Scientology’s most secretive branch, the Church of Spiritual Technology, which operates vaults for storing Hubbard’s writings and lectures in order to last for thousands of years, and also operates the compound where we believe Shelly Miscavige is being kept out of sight. Today, part two: CST’s property holdings.

The last official report of the Church of Spiritual Technology’s wealth came from IRS documents filed in 2012 showing a book value of $447 million. While its overall wealth is no longer officially reported because of changes to its profit reporting practices, the current value of its properties in the United States and the United Kingdom alone is now estimated to have a tax assessed value of at least $78.5 million. Its property footprint grows almost every year.

We group these properties in three segments: the vaults, the Heritage Properties and “Under-the-Radar” properties.

The vaults


Scientology’s four underground vaults include three facilities in California and one in New Mexico. A former CST official reported these sites were originally modeled after the Granite Mountain Records Vault in Utah, built in 1965 by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. These sites are secret to Scientologists themselves and have long been reported to hold the teachings of L Ron Hubbard on etched steel plates kept inside titanium boxes.

1. The vault at CST headquarters in Twin Peaks, California

This is the location where the actual work CST does archiving Hubbard’s works on media designed to last thousands of years. There is also a vault on this property. In 2016, the Underground Bunker first featured drone video of the facility, and locations in it were identified with the help of former CST employee Dylan Gill.

2. The vault at the Lady Washington Mine in Tuolumne, California

This vault was built into an existing underground mine in the California gold country. Very little is ever reported about it, but the Bunker also got a drone flyover it for the first time in 2016.

3. The vault near the northern California coast in Petrolia, CA

Our drone pilot documented some construction work at this vault, which has a spaceship-like entrance structure, and exists near some troubling earthquake faults.

4. The vault in Trementina, New Mexico

This one tends to get the most attention by the press because of its double-circle CST logo carved into the New Mexico desert. This one has also gone through some kind of upgrading in recent years.

The Scientology vaults themselves are reported to range in size from 100 to 700 feet in length. Yet property records show total land purchases for the “Archival Project” now spans almost 10,000 acres…equivalent in size to most of Manhattan. This assessment includes the approximate 3,800 acres of land in Rock Springs, WY still owned by CST, where local officials refused to grant permits for the creation of a fifth vault in 2015.

The Bunker also featured drone footage of that failed project.

There are no records indicating CST has attempted to create any additional vaults in the United States since this Wyoming attempt. In fact, the New Mexico-based engineering company hired to complete the fifth vault has not been in good standing with New Mexico officials since this effort.

These four vault sites are owned outright by the Church of Spiritual Technology itself and have a combined tax assessed value of over $37 million. Local jurisdictions only tax a fraction of this value in yearly property taxes. The most valuable of these properties is CST’s Headquarters in Twin Peaks, CA, valued at over $26 million by itself.


Heritage Properties

Separately, the CST-managed non-profit Heritage Properties International, LLC owns multiple properties in the US it refurbishes as museums. This set of properties now hold an estimated tax value of over $10 million.

The US properties grouped under this legal structure include the L. Ron Hubbard House Museum in Washington, DC, the L. Ron Hubbard Dianetics House in Bay Head, NJ, and the Camelback House in Phoenix, AZ. CST takes great pride in developing these sites, especially when they are added to the National Register of Historic Places.

The Camelback House presents an example of how properties change legal ownership. Until 2000, this property was owned by Scientology’s Building Services Management. From 2000-2016 it was owned by the CST company Mile High Inc. In 2016, ownership transferred again, this time to CST’s non-profit, Heritage Properties International LLC.

The movement of such properties between for-profit and non-profits managed by the same CST executives brings into focus specific questionable transactions that have the potential to trigger self-dealing inquiries.

The most recent additions to this property inventory include another former L Ron Hubbard home in Elizabeth, NJ (where the first Dianetics Foundation was formed), purchased in 2018, and an additional property in Phoenix, AZ, purchased in 2022, another former L. Ron Hubbard home.

Internationally, CST also owns at least one overseas location in the United Kingdom, which it values at over $17 million. The former Hubbard property in South Africa may also roll under CST control.

Under-the-Radar Properties

Property records show CST owns additional properties inherited from the estate of L. Ron Hubbard. These tax-exempt properties have a combined 2022 estimated tax value of almost $7 million, but are not open to the public. Each of these properties are currently owned by CST outright and do not currently fall under the control of its subordinate companies or non-profits.

Perhaps the most well-known of these properties is the 162-acre Whispering Winds Ranch in Creston, CA, where L. Ron Hubbard died in 1986. Caretakers at this location are known to donate tax-exempt funds to the local rodeos. The Bunker also featured a drone flyover of this property in 2016.

L. Ron Hubbard’s former house in La Quinta, CA, was once a location where many Scientology films were shot. CST purchased this property in 2009, yet its use today remains a mystery.

CST’s inventory also includes a small strip of land originally purchased by L Ron Hubbard in Manassas, VA. No known buildings exist on the site.

Separately, Los Angeles County records indicate CST manages the buildings housing both the Association for Better Living and Education (ABLE) and Author Services Inc. CST uses the Author Services building as its own official mailing address.


One last property worth noting is a tract of 42 acres in San Antonio, TX apparently once part of estate of L Ron Hubbard. Records indicate CST first attempted to lease this land to a spa company and then ultimately sold it in December 2000 to a property developer for $450,000. It is not immediately clear why CST choose to sell this property, while electing to keep other locations in its inventory.

In part three, we take a closer look at the Church of Spiritual Technology’s Headquarters and personnel.


Technology Cocktail

“Dub-in can occur in a different lifetime, even when it was not present in the lifetime just run. Dub-in is a continuous characteristic of a person in a single lifetime and may not be present in the ensuing lifetime.” — L. Ron Hubbard, 1959



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

“I can very easily go 500 years ago back into France and give you the name, rank, and serial number of a lot of things, see? And I can give these things to you, but after I’ve run a few of them, I start running into ‘Let’s see, was her name Mary? or was it Marie? or was it … ? And did that happen at Agincourt? or was that at Poitiers?’ And next thing you know I’m in a fog. And if I go on this way very long, I’ll start wondering whether I even was alive yesterday because I haven’t entered it from a zone of certainty. See?” — L. Ron Hubbard, July 2, 1964


Avast, Ye Mateys

“By advices from the MO the entire crew will be innoculated today. (Groan.) There will be two shots a week or so apart. This means on many auditing will be suspended for two weeks. Also solo. Some are not badly affected and these will be audited. TR course and study will not be suspended. This is a good time for auditors and internes and the tech personnel connected to catch up with their study and admin backlogs.” — The Commodore, July 2, 1971



Overheard in the FreeZone

“In the 1950s LRH spoke of people who could have OT perception. Something like guys going to the park to see pedestrian female bodies through their clothes. Also Inelia Benz (the first dynamic personification of thetan Gaia, the planet) describes in an interview with Bill Ryan how she was exterior in her childhood and saw through her thetan ‘eyes’ before ‘moving’ to her body’s head. Contactee Alex Collier describes how he was taken to a UFO of his friends (Andromedans on this galaxy) and underwent a ‘cleansing,’ the result of which was a 360 degree spherical perception/awareness of everything that happened in his surrounding. This suggests that one can have full OT perception by getting rid of entities implanted on the body.”


Past is Prologue

2001: Excerpts from the May, 2001 Flag FSM Newsletter were posted to a.r.s this week. “A special FSM Award Game has been launched for all FSMs who work with the Flag World Tour, starting one week prior to the Flag World Tour Event and extending three weeks after the Event.’ For any FSM who selects a person to Flag for a major service on which the FSM receives a minimum commission of $500.00, that FSM will be awarded with 1/4 of one level of the SAINT HILL Special Briefing Course or equivalent in training awards.’ A special award of one night in a Flag Hotel Suite is awarded to any FSM who raises $5,000 (or multiples thereof) in any given week. This award will be made in addition to the regular FSM fundraising commission. The Top Ten ASHO FSMs for 10 May – 24 May, 2001′: Frank Aggio $1,863.40; Steve Fabos $1,612.30; Alice Kartuzinski $1,421.75; Jim Frankel $1,251.14; Carol Woodruff $739.31; David Howsen $682.40; Tracey Andruscavage $682.40; Ty Dillar $663.14; Heidi Yanovich $454.96; Ofra Bahat $454.96. FSM standings among Individuals, Groups, Missions, and Orgs: 1. STERLING MANAGEMENT SOLUTIONS WUS 9,127; 2. SINGER ENTERPRISES CW 4,701; 3. FIELD ASSOCIATES WUS 4,334; 4. HOWSON GROUP WUS 2,612; 5. MACE-KINGSLEY CW 1,887.”


Random Howdy

“OT 2 is where the bait and switch part of the long con kicks in. It switches from a pseudo Freudian-Jungian neo Buddhist self help scam to full blown Buck Rogers and Ming the Merciless malarkey. At this point Hubbard is softening up the marks for the big reveal that comes at OT 3.”


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

Criminal prosecutions:

Danny Masterson charged for raping three women: Found guilty on two counts on May 31, remanded to custody. Sentencing on Aug 4.
‘Lafayette Ronald Hubbard’ (a/k/a Justin Craig), aggravated assault, plus drug charges: Grand jury indictments include charges from an assault while in custody. Trial scheduled for August 15.
David Gentile, GPB Capital, fraud.

Civil litigation:
Baxter, Baxter, and Paris v. Scientology, alleging labor trafficking: Forced to arbitration. Plaintiffs allowed interlocutory appeal to Eleventh Circuit.
Valerie Haney v. Scientology: Forced to ‘religious arbitration.’
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 sentencing of Masterson on Aug 4.
Jane Doe 1 v. Scientology, David Miscavige, and Gavin Potter: Case unsealed and second amended complaint filed. Next hearing August 1.
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] Podcast: Claire Headley on the questions Tom Cruise never gets asked
[TWO years ago] ‘Global psychiatric obliteration’: Scientology’s ongoing war on psychiatry
[THREE years ago] A family’s Scientology drug rehab nightmare: The Narconon ‘Fresh Start’ scam strikes again
[FOUR years ago] Introducing ‘The Cult Awareness Podcast,’ recorded at HowdyCon 2019 in Los Angeles
[FIVE years ago] Freed files: Scenes from a government investigation of Scientology
[SIX years ago] Facing government opposition, Scientology prepares to play dirty
[SEVEN years ago] Field report: Visiting the mission that told the Church of Scientology to take a hike
[EIGHT years ago] How to read a tabloid magazine story about the Church of Scientology: A primer
[NINE years ago] Scientology litigation update: The Garcias respond, and the NAFC plays hardball
[TEN years ago] Scientology Turns Over Documents, Laura DeCrescenzo Begins Process to Review Them
[ELEVEN years ago] Tom Cruise’s Former Scientology Auditor: ‘He Should Let Katie Have Everything She Wants’
[TWELVE years ago] Scientology Fireworks! Commenters of the Week, Independence Day Edition


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 3,078 days.
Katrina Reyes has not seen her mother Yelena in 3,593 days
Sylvia Wagner DeWall has not seen her brother Randy in 3,143 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his grandson Leo in 2,133 days.
Geoff Levin has not seen his son Collin and daughter Savannah in 2,014 days.
Christie Collbran has not seen her mother Liz King in 5,318 days.
Clarissa Adams has not seen her parents Walter and Irmin Huber in 3,189 days.
Doug Kramer has not seen his parents Linda and Norm in 2,294 days.
Jamie Sorrentini Lugli has not seen her father Irving in 4,741 days.
Quailynn McDaniel has not seen her brother Sean in 4,083 days.
Dylan Gill has not seen his father Russell in 12,649 days.
Melissa Paris has not seen her father Jean-Francois in 8,568 days.
Valeska Paris has not seen her brother Raphael in 4,735 days.
Mirriam Francis has not seen her brother Ben in 4,317 days.
Claudio and Renata Lugli have not seen their son Flavio in 4,578 days.
Sara Goldberg has not seen her daughter Ashley in 3,614 days.
Lori Hodgson has not seen her son Jeremy and daughter Jessica in 3,330 days.
Marie Bilheimer has not seen her mother June in 2,894 days.
Julian Wain has not seen his brother Joseph or mother Susan in 1,209 days.
Charley Updegrove has not seen his son Toby in 2,384 days.
Joe Reaiche has not seen his daughter Alanna Masterson in 6,935 days
Derek Bloch has not seen his father Darren in 4,066 days.
Cindy Plahuta has not seen her daughter Kara in 4,404 days.
Roger Weller has not seen his daughter Alyssa in 9,259 days.
Claire Headley has not seen her mother Gen in 4,378 days.
Ramana Dienes-Browning has not seen her mother Jancis in 2,734 days.
Mike Rinder has not seen his son Benjamin and daughter Taryn in 7,037 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his daughter Spring in 3,143 days.
Skip Young has not seen his daughters Megan and Alexis in 3,541 days.
Mary Kahn has not seen her son Sammy in 3,417 days.
Lois Reisdorf has not seen her son Craig in 3,000 days.
Phil and Willie Jones have not seen their son Mike and daughter Emily in 3,495 days.
Mary Jane Barry has not seen her daughter Samantha in 3,749 days.
Kate Bornstein has not seen her daughter Jessica in 14,858 days.


Posted by Tony Ortega on July 2, 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


Share Button
Print Friendly, PDF & Email