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


Scientology targets another international capital city, and we have the hype video!

We’ve had something of a Down Under theme here lately at the Underground Bunker. On Sunday, we appeared in another 60 Minutes Australia segment, about Ashton Kutcher and Mila Kunis. And the next day we got to hear about the Conley family and its connection to Kate Ceberano, Australia’s most well-known Scientologist.

And we hear it from Aussies all the time: Our country is too smart to put up with Scientology’s nonsense. The press in Oz is certainly more vigilant than the networks here.

But we didn’t want to give the impression that Scientology, hurting as it is, has given up hope below the equator.

As evidence of that, we were recently forwarded some material from Scientology’s latest Ideal Org push in Australia, which is to build a new cathedral in the country’s capital city of Canberra.


And there’s a hype video! We always enjoy those.

Scientology has a long legacy in Australia. Founder L. Ron Hubbard went there in the 1950s to spread his gospel, and left a strong footprint for his growing movement. Read Steve Cannane’s excellent book about Scientology in Australia, Fair Game, to get the full picture.

But we ask our antipodean friends, how do you judge Scientology’s chances of catching fire with this new promotional push?

Our local correspondent says, “The new Canberra Ideal Org and national church for Australia will be at 56 Chandler St Belconnen ACT, a 10 minute drive from the heart of the city and the current org on Alinga St. It looks like a smaller version of the AO with same brutalist style and used to be part of the Federal Government’s Cameron Offices Complex; part of it was demolished, part was turned into student accommodation and the remainder went to market for sale in 2018.” Records show Scientology paid $8.8 million AUS for it.

Brutalist style is right.

Hey, don’t disappoint NASA. Fork over your hard-earned cash now, pilgrims.


Technology Cocktail

“One girl, being audited, was left unflat on a security check question. The auditor blithely went on to the next question. The girl went out after session, and told everyone she knew the most vicious lies she could create about the immoral conduct of Scientologists. She wrote a stack of letters to people she knew out of town, telling gruesome tales of sexual orgies. An alert Scientologist heard the rumours, rapidly traced them back, got hold of the girl, sat her down and checked auditing and found the unflat security check question. The Withhold? Sexual misdemeanors. Once that was pulled, the girl hastily raced about correcting all her previous efforts to discredit.” — L. Ron Hubbard, 1961



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 [43] Tory Christman [44] Kate Bornstein [45] Christian Stolte [46] Mark Bunker [47] Jon Atack [48] Luke Y. Thompson [49] Mark Ebner [50] Bruce Hines [51] Spanky Taylor and Karen Pressley [51] Geoff and Robbie Levin [52] Sands Hall [53] Jonny Jacobsen [54] Sandy Holeman


Source Code

“I remember one space academy, I think the curriculum was two thousand years. I was a student there.” — L. Ron Hubbard, September 19, 1961



Avast, Ye Mateys

“The ‘letters to Ron’ line was backlogged in being answered in some orgs and the backlogs have been called to Flag for answering. LRH Comm has just given me a verbal report on these letters from various parts of the world. The line is very very theta, very friendly, very open. It has improved even over what it was a year ago. There are no critical comments. There is only great appreciation. This means that my own public image is high and has not been injured by last summer’s events. The orgs only injured themselves somewhat with crush sell and checks. It also means our tech is better. It does NOT mean our org image and friendliness must not be improved. It MUST be. It is very nice to hear from all these good people. I love them too. That’s why I work as hard as I do. It becomes more and more evident in this declining world that Man, above all things, knows he needs a friend.” — The Commodore, September 19, 1971


Overheard in the FreeZone

“I charge $620 for a Life/auditing repair. That would include repairing TRs.”


Past is Prologue

1996: Attorney Graham Berry announced that he will be opposing the name change of Berendo Street in Los Angeles to L. Ron Hubbard Way. “On Tuesday, October 1, 1996, at 10:00 A.M. in the Council Chambers, Room 340, City Hall, 200 North Spring Street, Los Angeles, California 90012, the full City Council for the City of Los Angeles will consider members John Ferraro and Richard Alatorre’s proposal to change the name of Berendo Street to ‘L. Ron Hubbard Way.’ Berendo Street abuts the Scientology complex in Hollywood. Council sources advise me that Scientology lobbyists have been pressuring each council member to vote for the proposed name change on a daily basis and have been approaching them at public functions for the same purpose. They are also conducting a major letter-writing campaign to council members and can be expected to have a large number of Scientologists turn out at the council meeting on October 1st, 1996, at which time each person wishing to speak will be given two minutes in which to make remarks. Accordingly, as many people as possible who are opposed to the name change, should be at the City Council meeting and sign in for that purpose as early as possible. Those same persons, and those who cannot attend, should at the very least e-mail the City Council members at the e-mail address provided below. The e-mail messages should provide as many reasons, and as much information as possible, preferably in verifiable detail, as to why the City Council should NOT approve the proposed name change.”


Random Howdy

“I always wanted to start my own cult even more than I ever wanted to be a rock star. I’m going to go watch some gun videos and start winding down. Goodnight Sherb, get some sleep.”



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 Sep 7.
‘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:
Leah Remini v. Scientology, alleging ‘Fair Game’ harassment and defamation: Complaint filed August 2, first hearing set for Dec 4.
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 Sep 7. Next hearing set for Sept 26.
Jane Doe 1 v. Scientology, David Miscavige, and Gavin Potter: Case unsealed and second amended complaint filed. Next hearing Nov 6.
Chiropractors Steve Peyroux and Brent Detelich, stem cell fraud: Ordered to mediation.



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] My Scientology wins: A personal testament of OT powers
[TWO years ago] Scientology wants you to take advantage of the CARES Act and donate to Dave while you can!
[THREE years ago] Read Danny Masterson’s ‘demurrer’ he’s hoping will get his criminal charges dismissed
[FOUR years ago] Here’s the Kent team’s 3rd lawsuit against Scientology and David Miscavige — dive in!
[FIVE years ago] Scientology’s minion lawyer stretches his ‘theta arm’ to touch the future!
[SIX years ago] Tonight, Paul Haggis calls out Scientology’s celebs: ‘Damn them for being purposely blind’
[SEVEN years ago] Talking highlights of ‘Fair Game’ with its author, Aussie journalist Steve Cannane
[EIGHT years ago] THE GETTING CLEAR CONFERENCE: How to see the videos that lay Scientology bare
[NINE years ago] Scientology’s tent party in England: The 9-minute trailer!
[TEN years ago] Scenes from Scientology’s Armageddon
[TWELVE years ago] The Top 25 People Crippling Scientology, No. 6: Anonymous


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 3,157 days.
Katrina Reyes has not seen her mother Yelena in 3,672 days
Sylvia Wagner DeWall has not seen her brother Randy in 3,222 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his grandson Leo in 2,212 days.
Geoff Levin has not seen his son Collin and daughter Savannah in 2,093 days.
Christie Collbran has not seen her mother Liz King in 5,397 days.
Clarissa Adams has not seen her parents Walter and Irmin Huber in 3,268 days.
Doug Kramer has not seen his parents Linda and Norm in 2,373 days.
Jamie Sorrentini Lugli has not seen her father Irving in 4,820 days.
Quailynn McDaniel has not seen her brother Sean in 4,162 days.
Dylan Gill has not seen his father Russell in 12,728 days.
Melissa Paris has not seen her father Jean-Francois in 8,647 days.
Valeska Paris has not seen her brother Raphael in 4,814 days.
Mirriam Francis has not seen her brother Ben in 4,396 days.
Claudio and Renata Lugli have not seen their son Flavio in 4,657 days.
Sara Goldberg has not seen her daughter Ashley in 3,693 days.
Lori Hodgson has not seen her son Jeremy and daughter Jessica in 3,409 days.
Marie Bilheimer has not seen her mother June in 2,973 days.
Julian Wain has not seen his brother Joseph or mother Susan in 1,288 days.
Charley Updegrove has not seen his son Toby in 2,463 days.
Joe Reaiche has not seen his daughter Alanna Masterson in 7,014 days
Derek Bloch has not seen his father Darren in 4,145 days.
Cindy Plahuta has not seen her daughter Kara in 4,483 days.
Roger Weller has not seen his daughter Alyssa in 9,338 days.
Claire Headley has not seen her mother Gen in 4,457 days.
Ramana Dienes-Browning has not seen her mother Jancis in 2,813 days.
Mike Rinder has not seen his son Benjamin and daughter Taryn in 7,116 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his daughter Spring in 3,222 days.
Skip Young has not seen his daughters Megan and Alexis in 3,620 days.
Mary Kahn has not seen her son Sammy in 3,496 days.
Lois Reisdorf has not seen her son Craig in 3,061 days.
Phil and Willie Jones have not seen their son Mike and daughter Emily in 3,574 days.
Mary Jane Barry has not seen her daughter Samantha in 3,828 days.
Kate Bornstein has not seen her daughter Jessica in 14,937 days.


Posted by Tony Ortega on September 19, 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