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Leah Remini fires back at Scientology’s attempt to gut her lawsuit

At the end of October, we told you that Scientology had responded to Leah Remini’s ‘Fair Game’ lawsuit with a barrage of accusations against her and more than 1,000 pages of exhibits, arguing that the church was only hitting back at Remini after she had started attacking them first.

Leah filed her lawsuit on August 2, saying that Scientology’s carefully planned harassment was having negative effects on her ability to make a living as Scientology spread misinformation about her to intimidate her producers and other business partners. She amended the lawsuit to say that the harassment has only increased since she first filed the lawsuit, and she also filed for a preliminary injunction, asking the court to force Scientology to stop its harassment while the case is going on.

Scientology’s response was to file a massive motion to strike and anti-SLAPP in an attempt to gut her lawsuit before it even really gets going. And now, we have Leah’s opposition to that attack, and it’s a doozy, with hundreds of pages of declarations included with the pleading.

Let’s get into it with the introduction of her response, written by attorneys Seth Lehrman and Linda Singer.


For ten years, Defendants David Miscavige, Church of Scientology International Inc., and Religious Technology Center, Inc. have waged a coordinated campaign to “obliterate” and “ruin utterly” Plaintiff Leah Remini. Defendants have engaged in countless false and malicious attacks of Remini through multiple Scientology-run social media accounts and websites. Defendants have physically harassed and stalked Remini, her family, and her colleagues. Messages obtained between private investigators hired by Scientology to follow Remini reveal that “word is they [Scientology] want to kill her.”

Scientology is a multi-billion dollar organization, headed by Miscavige. Scientology’s self-described “reliable source,” Mark “Marty” Rathbun, a former member and official of Scientology, has repeatedly accused Miscavige of criminal conduct.

In 2013, when Remini publicly left Scientology, following a childhood subject to abuse and later psychological torture and punishment, Defendants deemed Remini an enemy or “Suppressive Person” and “Fair Game,” and, according to Scientology policies and practices, set out to destroy her reputation, her livelihood, and her life, as they have done to so many others.

The document then argues that Scientology is making false personal attacks on Remini, and that it’s not just protected free speech. And interestingly, they point to Monique Rathbun’s 2013 lawsuit against the church. You may remember that Scientology had used the same approach then, arguing that what was going on was simply a war of words that was protected by the First Amendment. But the court rejected that argument, ruling that the “Squirrel Busters” stalking Monique was harassing conduct, not simply speech. (Monique later famously dropped that lawsuit even though she had won a key appellate victory, and her husband Marty then became Scientology’s go-to attack dog.)

Leah’s attorneys acknowledge that she is a “limited public figure,” but it’s not the case that she “has achieved such pervasive fame to be a public figure for all purposes and in all contexts—including assassinations of her character and attacks of her family.” Also, they say that Scientology has failed to show that its harassing attacks on her character are actually in the public interest.

And they argue against the motion to strike by saying that Leah is likely to prevail in a trial.

Remini has established the requisite probability of success because her evidence shows that Defendants repeatedly published accusations of her that they knew or recklessly disregarded were false and defamatory. The main defamatory statements at the core of Remini’s challenge include attacks that can be categorized as follows: Remini is a religious bigot; Remini engaged in hate speech; Remini is like the “KKK” and “neo-Nazi”; Remini is a racist; Remini is responsible for the wave of violence against the Jehovah’s Witnesses; Remini inspires praise of Hitler; Remini supports and loves rapists and sexual assault; Remini has incited and is responsible for violence, crimes, and hate crimes, including murder, and threats of violence; Remini filed a false police report; Remini engaged in attempted extortion of Scientology; Remini was abusive towards her family and her employees. Defendants do not deny that they published these statements about Remini, both online and in letters to Remini’s employers and sponsors. Defendants’ accusations are false statements of fact that are not protected by any privilege and have caused significant harm to Remini.

The filing also takes on the claim, so often repeated by Scientology, that Leah has been the inspiration for hate crimes committed against the church by people motivated by watching her television shows. They go through each of the incidents that Scientology cites, showing how in each case they are exaggerations by the church or simply false accusations against Leah.

Just to cite one example, the document goes into some length about one notorious incident that Scientology has used time and again, the murder of a Scientology security guard name Chih-Jen Yeh in Australia.

Defendants’ connection between the murder of Yeh and Remini is not only false but unbelievable. Farny absurdly declares that he has “personal knowledge” of the following supposed facts: “On January 3, 2019, a 16-year-old man stabbed to death a security guard at a Scientology church in Australia. The assailant had expressed anti-Scientology sentiments. The Church staff member who was a witness to the crime, asked the assailant’s mother what he was reading on the internet about Scientology and the mother showed the Church staff member the link to a Chinese anti-Scientology website on her phone. This information was reported to CSI after the incident. On January 7, 2019, I accessed the website, saw that it contained links to Remini’s The Aftermath television show, as well as Mike Rinder’s website. I downloaded a copy, enclosed herewith as Exhibit 34.” (Farny Decl. ¶38.) There is no corroboration of Farny’s story in the court proceedings for the murder. The court heard the Taiwanese boy stabbed a man to death after becoming angry that his mother deleted a pornographic story from one of his electronic devices. The boy first confronted his mother about the deleted data (at the Scientology facility where she was taking classes) and then beat her up. The next day he went back to the facility and insisted he wanted to speak to a staff member about his data, but was told if he attempted to enter the building it would be locked down. An altercation then ensued between the boy and Yeh, who was present, and the boy stabbed Yeh. The court found the boy was “not criminally liable” because he was experiencing a mental impairment during the stabbing, arising from psychotic symptoms due to schizophrenia. The decision says nothing about Remini or Farny’s “facts.” Farny also does not state that “CSI” reported this information about what Defendants claim was the cause of the murder (the website with link to Aftermath) to the authorities as one would expect if it actually believed that was the cause. The only “evidence” Defendants cite to support their argument that “the murderer used his cell phone to view an anti-Scientology website that featured a link to Plaintiff’s television show” is a false and defamatory letter that Scientology itself wrote to Paul Buccieri, President of A&E re: “Blood on your hands” claiming that “You paid for the hate that caused his murder.” Moreover, even if there were any admissible evidence that the mentally-ill 16-yearold viewed the website, Defendants do not claim that he: (1) scrolled to the second to last comment containing the link (which appears on page 16 of 17 in Defendants’ Exhibit 34); (2) clicked on the link to Aftermath, (3) viewed it, and (4) was incited by it. The boy did not even speak English. Defendants all but concede that their repeated claims that Remini incited the murder of Yeh are made up — asking the Court to find in the alternative that they are an “opinion” of the events.

The filing goes on to debunk several more of Scientology’s claims about crimes that were supposedly inspired by Leah.

The 36-page opposition is accompanied by more than 600 pages of declarations and exhibits, and we’ll be digging into those in subsequent stories.

Wow, this war has really heated up. The hearing for Judge Randolph Hammock to consider Scientology’s motion to strike is scheduled for January 9.



Technology Cocktail

“If your pc has a dirty needle, its cause is CUT ITSA or an L1 session ARC Break. NO other source such as a wrong Item or goal or earlier engrams or service fac by-passed charge can cause a dirty needle. If it’s a dirty needle its cause lies in basic auditing not in technique errors. This rule is invariable. The apparent exception is the session ARC Break that keys in by-passed technique charge.” — L. Ron Hubbard, 1963



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

“Sex — it’s interesting, but aberrative value of sex compared to the aberrative value of eight is zero. Of course, what happens to somebody like Freud that concentrates on sex, is he really doesn’t have guts enough to just kick completely outside all agreements with his civilization. And for somebody in 1894 to have suddenly said, ‘God — well, I tell you about God, he’s a trick!’ They probably would have lynched him. They’ll probably lynch me yet, but anyway … For somebody to have kicked outside the confines of the church at that time would have been too adventurous to contemplate. It almost is now.” — L. Ron Hubbard, December 2, 1953


Avast, Ye Mateys

“A Court of Ethics is convened on MSM Ann Tidman. She did not come on duty till 0930. This violates Policy No. 10. Ann Tidman is to appear before the Court at 1930 in the Aft Lounge. Court Officer is Ens. Wayne Alkire.” — Ens. C. Cariotaki, T/3rd Mate, Convening Officer, December 2, 1970


Overheard in the FreeZone

“Now there also exists bad angels/aliens outside this dimension. Beings and some people here on Earth are in telepathic/mind communication with them. Certainly Jews are more likely to have this special communication or spirit guide guidance you could say. Of course not all of them have it, it’s just that they are more likely to have this ability in their DNA which enables this special connection, hence the huge amount of super evil people here on Earth who have Jewish DNA/family backgrounds…In reference to Scientology, implants seem to be able to affect DNA according to OT8 Student briefing, so people could be getting abducted, which changes their DNA which then can be passed onto their children. So basically we could be dealing with bad aliens implanting people so that they have telepathic communication with them forever.”



Past is Prologue

2000: The St. Petersburg Times reported that Scientology is hoping to bring a Starbucks Coffee shop to downtown Clearwater. “The coffee shop is expected to open this summer at Cleveland Street and Fort Harrison Avenue. The 2,400-square-foot coffee shop will be on the southwest corner of Cleveland Street and Fort Harrison Avenue, after renovations are completed during a seven-month period. It couldn’t have happened without the city, the Church of Scientology and Matrix Lodging working together. Starbucks first became interested in Clearwater’s downtown as a result of efforts by Scientology to attract them to open a shop in a Scientology facility here. Starbucks ended up agreeing to supply Scientology’s Fort Harrison Hotel with coffee, but the deal fell through to open a separate store downtown in a Scientology building on Cleveland Street. The length of the proposed lease and concerns that protesters against the church might disrupt the shop were among the issues, said Tom DeVocht, who oversees the church’s real estate and construction projects. Scientology officials then encouraged the coffee chain to begin negotiating with Gerald Ellenburg, the CEO of Matrix, to open their shop in Matrix’s building nearby. The city helped make the pitch to the coffee chain.”


Random Howdy

“I’m an old punk who never had much time for hippies, but in retrospect I gotta admit they accomplished more than we punks did. We just had better fashion and got the music back to where it should be. I don’t know, but it always seems that after a certain point in any movement that the soldiers outlive their usefulness and the diplomats always take over.”


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. Sentenced to 30 years to life 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. Next pretrial hearing October 30.

David Gentile, GPB Capital, fraud.

Civil litigation:
Leah Remini v. Scientology, alleging ‘Fair Game’ harassment and defamation: Complaint filed August 2, Scientology submitting anti-SLAPP response Oct 26.
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: Discovery phase.
Jane Doe 1 v. Scientology, David Miscavige, and Gavin Potter: Case unsealed and second amended complaint filed. Scientology moves for religious arbitration.
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] EXCLUSIVE: What the Danny Masterson jury didn’t hear — The Jane Doe 1 eyewitness
[TWO years ago] Scientology honcho lectures Clearwater leaders on how he’s been mistreated
[THREE years ago] The Top 25 People Enabling Scientology, No. 8: The ghost private eyes
[FIVE years ago] How to finance a Scientology church in a city without any Scientologists
[SIX years ago] DOX: Scientology’s pricey Florida ‘spiritual mecca’ keeps up its value in latest tax records
[SEVEN years ago] You saw Bonny Elliott talk about her battle with Scientology; Now hear it from her husband
[EIGHT years ago] Hey, Legoland: A former Scientology youth explains what your money will buy
[NINE years ago] Another Riffer-ific salvo from Scientology leader David Miscavige in our legal roundup
[TEN years ago] Here Comes Scientology, Here Comes Scientology, Right Down Hollywood Boulevard!
[ELEVEN years ago] Scientology Targeting Eagle Scouts In New Initiative


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 3,231 days.
Katrina Reyes has not seen her mother Yelena in 3,746 days
Sylvia Wagner DeWall has not seen her brother Randy in 3,296 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his grandson Leo in 2,286 days.
Geoff Levin has not seen his son Collin and daughter Savannah in 2,167 days.
Christie Collbran has not seen her mother Liz King in 5,471 days.
Clarissa Adams has not seen her parents Walter and Irmin Huber in 3,342 days.
Doug Kramer has not seen his parents Linda and Norm in 2,447 days.
Jamie Sorrentini Lugli has not seen her father Irving in 4,894 days.
Quailynn McDaniel has not seen her brother Sean in 4,236 days.
Dylan Gill has not seen his father Russell in 12,802 days.
Melissa Paris has not seen her father Jean-Francois in 8,721 days.
Valeska Paris has not seen her brother Raphael in 4,889 days.
Mirriam Francis has not seen her brother Ben in 4,470 days.
Claudio and Renata Lugli have not seen their son Flavio in 4,731 days.
Sara Goldberg has not seen her daughter Ashley in 3,767 days.
Lori Hodgson has not seen her son Jeremy and daughter Jessica in 3,483 days.
Marie Bilheimer has not seen her mother June in 3,047 days.
Julian Wain has not seen his brother Joseph or mother Susan in 1,362 days.
Charley Updegrove has not seen his son Toby in 2,537 days.
Joe Reaiche has not seen his daughter Alanna Masterson in 7,088 days
Derek Bloch has not seen his father Darren in 4,219 days.
Cindy Plahuta has not seen her daughter Kara in 4,557 days.
Roger Weller has not seen his daughter Alyssa in 9,412 days.
Claire Headley has not seen her mother Gen in 4,531 days.
Ramana Dienes-Browning has not seen her mother Jancis in 2,887 days.
Mike Rinder has not seen his son Benjamin and daughter Taryn in 7,190 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his daughter Spring in 3,296 days.
Skip Young has not seen his daughters Megan and Alexis in 3,694 days.
Mary Kahn has not seen her son Sammy in 3,570 days.
Lois Reisdorf has not seen her son Craig in 3,135 days.
Phil and Willie Jones have not seen their son Mike and daughter Emily in 3,648 days.
Mary Jane Barry has not seen her daughter Samantha in 3,902 days.
Kate Bornstein has not seen her daughter Jessica in 15,011 days.


Posted by Tony Ortega on December 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


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