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Leah Remini applauds an MP’s call for investigation of Scientology in the UK

[Leah Remini and British MP Diane Abbott]

Last week we talked to Alexander Barnes-Ross about his stunning news: After writing to his local Member of Parliament (MP) last September about his experiences in Scientology, former Shadow Home Secretary and MP Diane Abbott responded by telling Alex that she has asked HMRC — the UK’s equivalent of the IRS — to open a widespread investigation of what she called Scientology’s “history of fraudulent activity internationally.”

We thought it was a stunning development and something we’ve been hoping to see happen in this country: A national lawmaker calling for a serious investigation of an organization that is known for its abuses.

And it turns out that Leah Remini was also surprised and impressed with Alex’s success.

She gave us this statement about the news from England:

I applaud Alex Barnes-Ross and his unrelenting efforts to expose Scientology for the criminal organization that it is around the world, and particularly in the United Kingdom.


It is from efforts like his, and the collective efforts of so many others, that Scientology will finally be taken to task for evading investigation and, ultimately, prosecution.

The fact that Alex has an MP who is not shying away from seeking the truth is an accomplishment in itself.

I support him, and I thank him — and Ms. Abbott — for asking the UK’s equivalent of the IRS to open a real investigation of Scientology.

If they are not thwarted by Scientology’s usual evasive tactics, they will be successful in exposing this business-for-profit masquerading as a religion around the globe.

And I thank you, Tony, for reporting on this very important story, and thank your supporters for continuing to champion those who fight this criminal organization.

We really appreciate Leah’s kind words, and we can’t help drawing a parallel between what she’s going through at the moment — battling Scientology in court over what she says is years of harassment — and the career of Diane Abbott, the first black woman elected to Parliament and the longest serving Black MP, who has a history of fighting against intimidation and harassment as well.

From Alex’s story about her last week:

Abbott has persevered through decades of abuse and harassment, an Amnesty International report in 2017 finding half of all abusive tweets about female MPs were directed at her. According to The Independent, she receives ten times more abuse than any other MP.

Here then again is the letter that Abbott wrote to Alex, informing him that she has formally asked the HMRC to open an investigation of Scientology.

16th January 2024

Dear Alexander,

Thank you for writing to me about Scientology and what you have faced since leaving the Church of Scientology. Please accept my sincere apologies for the delay in responding to you. I am very sorry to hear about the harassment you have faced since leaving the church, no-one should face such a horrific campaign of harassment. I want to commend you for speaking out publicly.

On the matter of harassment and potential criminal actions by members of the church, I regret that as your MP I am unable to provide you with legal advice regarding whether the hate videos or hacking attempts you describe would constitute a basis for legal action. On this issue I would advise you to consider seeking legal help if you have not done so already.

More broadly, I share your concerns about the legality of some of the actions described. As you have said, Scientology has a history of fraudulent activity internationally and other former Scientologists have also attested to the horrific treatment of former members.


I have written to HMRC, who brought the case against the Church of Scientology for ruling that their “chapel” was a place of worship, urging them to look again at options to appeal this decision and also to more broadly investigate the churches finances for fraudulent activity. I will share with you any response I receive.

Thank you again for contacting me about this important matter. If you would like to learn more about what I do in Parliament, please feel free to visit

Yours sincerely,

Rt Hon Diane Abbott MP
Member of Parliament for Hackney North and Stoke Newington

We’re particularly encouraged by Abbott’s offer to update Alex on what she learns, and we’re looking forward to reporting more about this story in the future.


Technology Cocktail

“It is easy to tell a Type One PTS from a Type Two. The Type One brightens up at once and ceases to Roller Coaster the moment the present time SP is spotted. The pc ceases to Roller Coaster. The pc does not go back on it and begin to beg off. The pc does not begin to worry about the consequences of disconnection. If the pc does any of these things, then the pc is a Type Two.” — L. Ron Hubbard, 1965



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

“A psychiatrist tells you that people aren’t really insane, because insane people could snap out of it if they wanted to, and this, therefore, is their reason for punishing people who are insane. See, their logic just goes haywire halfway through. They almost have an answer and then they miss it. Almost touch it, miss it. Once in a blue moon some psychotic will — well, this is not even a technique — but some psychotic will suddenly get sane on this statement made to him: ‘You don’t have to be insane, you know.’ You know, he all of a sudden gets sane. It’s quite amusing. Much more often, psychotics turn sane on this one: ‘Come up to present time, please.’ They do and they say, ‘Hello!’ They’re not insane anymore; just pull them out of an engram.” — L. Ron Hubbard, January 24, 1957



Avast, Ye Mateys

“LOY AND CANDY: These two were doing all right until they came to Flag at which time their parents anti-Scn attitude keyed in and they became as cases ‘Troublesome Sources.’ They have been sent back at Flag expense to handle their parents and report to AOLA and complete their retrain at which time their Class VIII will be restored.” — The Commodore, January 24, 1970


Overheard in the FreeZone

“I spent 40 years in Scientology. Only 9 months ago did I begin to understand who I was really. So, one would have to, without difficulty, be able to step in and out of theta/mind. The construct recedes so it’s different from exteriorization. There’s no written technology to do it so one would simply have to intend if one is interested. Yet, one does not have to be at effect: In your soul cause/effect is no longer applicable. A soul, little by little can be strengthened and theta/mind does not disappear. It remains with you until physical death.”


Past is Prologue

1998: Scientology announced plans to launch the I am a Scientologist Campaign, in which a number of graphics would be produced for web sited to declare the religious affiliation of the site owner. “With the advent of the Internet-the fastest medium of communication for people around the globe-a lot of people have come together and are in comm. This has made the Internet a great medium for campaigns of all types, and we have one that is sure to raise ARC amongst all people. Our campaign is meant to build worldwide religious tolerance, and thus support and safeguard religious diversity through the Internet. Its motto is simply: ‘I am a (Scientologist or Muslim or Catholic or Buddhist etc.). Support religious tolerance’ Icons with this motto will be provided to all Scientologists around the world within the next 24 hours. We will then have icons designed for people of all religions represented on the Internet. These icons will be made available on a new web site we are designing specifically for this religious tolerance campaign. In our travels as Scientologists, we have led countless crusades for human rights, religious tolerance and individual liberty. We now have a campaign in which everybody can participate. You can make this possible by creating your own web page and making this campaign known by displaying the ‘I am a Scientologist. Support religious tolerance’ logo and by inviting others of all faiths to take the initiative to do so as well. Much love, Gloria Idda”


Random Howdy


“If you believe that the Church of Scientology is a criminal organization, that makes David Miscavige the most successful crime boss in the world.”


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 January 29, 2024.
David Gentile, GPB Capital, fraud.

Civil litigation:
Leah Remini v. Scientology, alleging ‘Fair Game’ harassment and defamation: Complaint filed August 2, motion to strike/anti-SLAPP motions by Scientology to be heard January 9, 2024.
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] Who takes over Scientology after Dave? Surprising answers from our experts
[TWO years ago] L. Ron Hubbard’s galactic adventure: 36 years since the Scientology founder left the planet
[THREE years ago] AUDIO: Tommy Davis, as Scientology spokesman, secretly recorded discussing ‘disconnection’
[FOUR years ago] Scientology files anti-SLAPP, says stalking and smearing Valerie Haney is free speech
[FIVE years ago] Thirty-three years later, Scientology founder L. Ron Hubbard is still surfing the galaxy
[SIX years ago] The Battle of Portland: How Scientology turned a nightmare court verdict into a major victory
[SEVEN years ago] Another Leah, inspired by her namesake, comes forward with a harrowing Scientology escape
[EIGHT years ago] On the 30th anniversary of L. Ron Hubbard’s galaxial soul ejection, an obit by an old friend
[NINE years ago] First time in full: 1997 interview of Barbara Klowden, L. Ron Hubbard’s PR agent and lover
[TEN years ago] Eric Idle and Kirstie Alley discuss Scientology!
[ELEVEN years ago] Lawrence Wright: “Scientology Is Heading for a Reckoning”


Scientology disconnection, a reminder

Bernie Headley (1952-2019) did not see his daughter Stephanie in his final 5,667 days.
Tammy Synovec has not seen her daughter Julia in 2,789 days.
Valerie Haney has not seen her mother Lynne in 3,284 days.
Katrina Reyes has not seen her mother Yelena in 3,799 days
Sylvia Wagner DeWall has not seen her brother Randy in 3,349 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his grandson Leo in 2,339 days.
Geoff Levin has not seen his son Collin and daughter Savannah in 2,220 days.
Christie Collbran has not seen her mother Liz King in 5,524 days.
Clarissa Adams has not seen her parents Walter and Irmin Huber in 3,395 days.
Jamie Sorrentini Lugli has not seen her father Irving in 4,947 days.
Quailynn McDaniel has not seen her brother Sean in 4,289 days.
Dylan Gill has not seen his father Russell in 12,855 days.
Melissa Paris has not seen her father Jean-Francois in 8,774 days.
Valeska Paris has not seen her brother Raphael in 4,942 days.
Mirriam Francis has not seen her brother Ben in 4,523 days.
Claudio and Renata Lugli have not seen their son Flavio in 4,784 days.
Sara Goldberg has not seen her daughter Ashley in 3,820 days.
Lori Hodgson has not seen her son Jeremy and daughter Jessica in 3,536 days.
Marie Bilheimer has not seen her mother June in 3,100 days.
Julian Wain has not seen his brother Joseph or mother Susan in 1,415 days.
Charley Updegrove has not seen his son Toby in 2,590 days.
Joe Reaiche has not seen his daughter Alanna Masterson in 7,141 days
Derek Bloch has not seen his father Darren in 4,272 days.
Cindy Plahuta has not seen her daughter Kara in 4,610 days.
Roger Weller has not seen his daughter Alyssa in 9,465 days.
Claire Headley has not seen her mother Gen in 4,584 days.
Ramana Dienes-Browning has not seen her mother Jancis in 2,940 days.
Mike Rinder has not seen his son Benjamin and daughter Taryn in 7,243 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his daughter Spring in 3,349 days.
Skip Young has not seen his daughters Megan and Alexis in 3,747 days.
Mary Kahn has not seen her son Sammy in 3,623 days.
Lois Reisdorf has not seen her son Craig in 3,188 days.
Phil and Willie Jones have not seen their son Mike and daughter Emily in 3,701 days.
Mary Jane Barry has not seen her daughter Samantha in 3,955 days.
Kate Bornstein has not seen her daughter Jessica in 15,064 days.


Posted by Tony Ortega on January 24, 2024 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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