I saw this and thought the readers of ars might like to read it too. M.
Jane Scott (Personal Information Redacted)
Honorable John Ashcroft
U.S. Attorney General
U.S. Department of Justice
950 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20530-0001
Honorable Attorney General:
I am writing to you in support of the request for information and immediate action you received earlier this week from California attorney, Graham E. Berry.
I, personally, have been witness to much of the abuse, both personal and institutional, about which Mr. Berry has written. Additionally, I am a former member of the "Church" of Scientology and my children, friends and I have been victims of "Fair Game", extortion and exploitation at the "Church's" hands.
Within the past year alone, two of my life-long friends, Patricia McSweeney of San Rafael, California and Celeste Downey of Las Vegas, Nevada have received telephone calls from Scientology's chief "investigator", Eugene Ingram. The purpose of these calls was apparently to "inform" them about Mr. Berry and based upon this [mis]information to encourage them to bring pressure to bear upon me to cease my relationship with and support of him. With particular regard to Mrs. McSweeney, a 79-year old widow and mother of six, Mr. Ingram was rude, obnoxious and offensive. When Mrs. McSweeney inquired of him whether he was working for the Scientology enterprise, he became even more abusive and refused to answer her; however, Mrs. McSweeney, was quite conversant with Scientology's modus operendi and correctly surmised that Ingram was an agent of the Scientologists and had gotten her phone number from my former husband, a Scientologist. She abruptly terminated the conversation feeling harrassed, shaken and outraged.
Additionally, in late January or early February of 2001, two of my neighbors in the Lucas Valley area of San Rafael, California, where I had resided for over seventeen years, received packets of information (Dead Agent Packs) from Elliot Abelson, Esq., just as had a variety of Mr. Berry's acquaintances and family members including his elderly parents in New Zealand. (The letters under discussion are identical in content to the one attached hereto as Exhibit I, and, in fact, my neighbors' names appear on the cc list) This letter requested information about Mr. Berry and spread further slanderous allegations about him. Both of these families had purchased homes on my block within the preceding twelve months (whereas none of the longer-term residents received letters from Mr. Abelson) strongly suggesting that the someone had searched the Marin County title records and based on what they assumed was greater susceptibility to unfounded slanderous allegations sent their "black propaganda" only to them. None of these people had ever met, nor even heard of, Mr. Berry and I cannot imagine what was the actual purpose of such correspondence by a member of the State Bar of California. It is of some note that one of the neighbor-recipients, a California attorney, received his copy at his law office in San Francisco. It speaks volumes about the basic human decency of my neighbors that the only result of Abelson's communication was their unbridled support for and sympathy towards both Mr. Berry and me.
In advance, please allow me to apologize for the length of the following narrative, for although it will no doubt seem lengthy and convoluted to you, it is, in fact, a rather abbreviated version of the events described.
As I stated previously, I am a former Scientologist and in that role may be able shed some light on the types of treatment (extortion, kidnapping, etc.) meted out to this "church's" parishioners. By the time the events described below occurred, I was no longer willingly involved in Scientology (my now ex-husband, Steve Archinal, DVM, [further information about him is provided herewith as Exhibit 2 and can also be found at http://www.kpix.com/news/5reports/Pets_&_Vets,_Part_1.html], and I had left in 1975, although he returned to the waiting, phenomenally expensive open arms of this cult in 1984), but was, on the advice of counsel (3 separate lawyers in 3 different California law firms specializing in family law stated essentially, "If you can possibly survive, then don't ever engage in a custody battle with someone in a cult. You can't win. Wait until the youngest child is over 13 and can determine his own custody before you get a divorce.") attempting to survive within my marriage until my younger son (then age 8) was old enough to be an active participant in determining his own custody.
Commencing prior to early in 1991, my husband had begun to completely undermine my relationship with my then 13-year-old son, Jesse, by telling him that I had "evil intentions" toward him and that I was, at the very least, a "suppressive" influence, if not a outright "Suppressive Person" ("SP") toward him. The Scientology definition of a "Suppressive Person" is as follows: "A suppressive person is one that actively seeks to suppress or damage Scientology or a Scientologist by suppressive acts." [Volunteer Minister's Handbook, Glossary] The definition of suppressive acts includes the following: "Suppressive acts are clearly those covert or overt acts knowingly calculated to reduce or destroy the influence or activities of Scientology or prevent case gains or continued Scientology success and activity on the part of a Scientologist... they cannot be granted the rights normally accorded rational beings," emphasis added [Hubbard, L. Ron, Introduction to Scientology Ethics, pgs. 223-224, 1989]. It is also a suppressive act if one is guilty of, "Failure to handle or disavow and disconnect from a person demonstrably guilty of suppressive acts." emphasis added (Ibid. p. 209-210). These Scientology definitions have enormous significance to the way in which former Scientologists and critics are treated and I shall return to these issues later. With regard to "suppressive" people, Scientology "sacred scripture" of 18 October, 1967, on "Penalties for Lower Conditions," clearly described the merciless persecution of SPs. Under the ethics condition of "enemy," it states:
"SP Order... Fair game. May be deprived of property or injured by any means by any Scientologist without any discipline of the Scientologist. May be tricked, sued or lied to or destroyed."
In about January of 1991, Jesse began exhibiting what were clearly the signs of severe clinical depression. He did such things as: injecting his face with a syringe full of tap water to mimic insect stings so that he would not have to attend a class which he was scheduled to attend and which required an extended trip to the emergency room; taking a syringe to the tires of my car, during the very late night hours, so that he would not be forced to attend classes he was scheduled to attend, because I would be unable to drive him as I had to get my car fixed. (The air was let out of my tires at least twice, perhaps three times and I had called the County Sheriff's Office who had then "staked out" my house in a surveillance vehicle. Needless to say, the culprit was never caught as he was well aware of the Sheriff's van parked across the street from our home). Jesse also exhibited signs of depression by refusing to get up or to get dressed during the day. He began to overeat dramatically. He did the barest minimum of schoolwork, watched TV and ate throughout the entire day. He was intractable and slothful beyond imagination. My husband held me fully responsible for this because I had always "suppressed" Jesse.
Although it is rather unusual in the United States, both of my sons were, prior to this time, avid students of ballet. At the time under discussion, Jesse decided to quit dancing allegedly, according to his father, because of my "suppression" (irrespective of this allegation, quitting ballet at around the age of 13 is a rather normal occurrence for children of both genders). I, however, felt that Jesse had always intended to quit ballet and had manipulated us. The preceding June he had, based on his supposedly intense desire to study for a career in ballet, convinced his father that he needed to pursue a course of "independent" academic study (i.e., modified home schooling) rather than returning to seventh grade at his Independent School, St. Mark's, which he and his father agreed was a "suppressive" environment. I did not think that there was anything wrong with St. Mark's and was experiencing full-blown anxiety attacks whenever I thought about being responsible for the education of such an intractable, unmotivated adolescent. Once out of a demanding educational environment, for which he had been provided the ultimate excuse for failure, i.e. "suppression", Jesse was free to rid himself of the other time-consuming, demanding activity in his life - ballet class. I had provided the perfect excuse for Jesse's decision by allegedly being "suppressive". Thus, Jesse had managed to rid his life of all demands and drifted into what he thought would be an adolescent paradise of daylong television and food with no noticeable responsibilities what so ever.
As my family descended further and further into dysfunctionality, it became clearer to me that I could do little, if indeed I wished to protect my younger son from both his father's and Scientology's malevolent influences. I spoke with Jesse's pediatrician, Dr. Aimy Taniguchi, about his problems. I tried to explain to her that Jesse would NEVER be allowed to see either a psychologist or a psychiatrist as seeing either type of practitioner was against his father's "religious" beliefs. I felt that this was quite unfortunate as Jesse was obviously in need of some immediate help.
During the following year, Jesse was in and out of his "Independent Study" program, then in and out of a private school, Real School, (selected solely by his father) whose teaching methods were based on the writings of Scientology's founder L. Ron Hubbard. I was coerced, by being told that if I did not comply with my husband's demands that Jesse attend Real School that he would have to be removed from our home again to get him away from my "suppression". I was then told that I had to release California Uniform Gift to Minors ("CUGMA") money to pay for Jesse's tuition for as to not do so was a "suppressive" act. Prior to this period, Jesse's father moved him out of our family home because of my "suppression" and used his unimpeded access to the child to indoctrinate him further into Scientology. Additionally, his father encouraged Jesse to further ignore his academic responsibilities as they were "unimportant" when compared to the value of studying Scientology "scripture".
Jesse's compliance at Real School was virtually no better than it had been at St. Mark's and he refused to attend to his studies, do his homework, or in general, to cooperate. Jesse was not invited back to Real School for the forthcoming academic year. Because Jesse's behavior was intolerable even by Real School's rather loose standards we were faced with having to get him to reform himself using the only means which we were allowed to use - Scientology. To reiterate, this was a severely depressed adolescent in need of psychiatric intervention that he could not receive because of his father's "religious" convictions. It was at this juncture that we became personally involved in Scientology's institutionally tolerated and sanctioned abuse.
At this point we heard of an "ethics camp" run by a former Marine, Wally Hanks, who was a highly trained Scientologist (from my husband's perspective the only relevant credential!). The program was the Mace-Kingsley Ranch school in California's Sierra Nevada Mountains near the town of Grass Valley. (Similar institutions are still, to the best of my knowledge extant near Palmdale in southern California and in New Mexico.) This was basically a sort of "tough-love" environment with the very very expensive veneer of Scientology added to it (approximately $7,000 for the first month and perhaps something like $650/week thereafter).
At the end of the '91-'92 academic year we took Jesse up to the Ranch which consisted of a house where Wally and the girls lived and a few shack-like out buildings with no heat, running water, sanitary facilities or electricity.
At the "Ranch" the children were expected to work hard physically and to learn to master their environment. (I fully believe that this is why the program worked as well as it did, but the same results could have been achieved in a much less costly, and much safer setting run by someone other than Scientologists). On top of the hard physical work and the deprivations caused by the scarcity of amenities there was an overlay of "heavy" Scientology "ethics" (this had the effect of enforcing the group's morality and mentality, and being sent to ethics is a real and substantial threat!).
What we did not know about when we took our son to Mace-Kingsley was that Wally Hanks was a pedophile who was engaged in illegal relations with at least one, or perhaps several, of the girls in his charge. One weekend when his younger brother and I went up see Jesse the Ranch it was in obvious turmoil and there appeared to be several new adults around. Jesse swore us to secrecy and then explained that one of the girls and her boyfriend had run away because she "freaked-out" about Wally's sexually molesting her and her not wanting it to go on anymore. (In a relatively recent incarnation of this story my son tried explaining that the sex was "consensual". However, the adults listening to this explained that sex between an approximately 15-year old girl and an approximately 50-year old man was, by definition, child molestation and a crime for which the adult should have prosecuted!). As is typical of the Scientology enterprise and its intense need to control its public image, the perpetrator of the crime(s), Wally Hanks, was never reported to the civil authorities although the crime itself was most certainly known to Scientology authorities, various other "church" members and to the girl's parents.
Jesse celebrated his fourteenth birthday at the Ranch which resulted in his receiving a "birthday paddling" (with a wooden paddle which left bruises and rendered Jesse genuinely scared and upset). I did not hear about this until after he had completed his "program" at the Ranch.
The Ranch provided a veritable global compendium of questionable practices and offensives which included, but were not limited to: the aforementioned child sexual and physical abuse: the casual use and display of vast numbers of weapons (both the adults and children [all the latter of whom were there as the result of behavioral and/or disciplinary problems]) went about carrying loaded firearms (ostensibly as protection against bear attack); additionally, most of the children, my own son included were armed with machetes; and almost as abhorrently, the children were transported on public highways under incredibly unsafe conditions such as on one occasion ,of which I am aware, in which the children were loaded in the back of a stake truck and driven to the Palmdale "campus" a journey of approximately 450 miles. I was unable to speak out for fear that I would permanently lose my son; his presence in my life denied because if I had spoken out I would have been "suppressing" Scientology and/or Scientologists (see definitions above, page 3 para.4 and page 4 paras. 1 & 2).
Jesse returned home in late November or early December of 1992, having missed approximately 3 months of the academic year. (Although the children at the Ranch were supposed to be doing school work/attending school, this never occurred. They were either working as slave labor on the ranch itself or they were doing Scientology courses or "auditing" [counseling], but never did they actually do any academic work or attend any sort of school).
Over my strong protestations that Jesse really needed to remain at home so that he could begin high school at the appropriate time My husband and the various minions of the "church" arranged for Jesse to go to Clearwater, Florida to do a Scientology "course." Records in my possession demonstrate that on December 15, 1992, $12,600 of Jesse's CUGMA money was donated to the Scientology enterprise. The entry in both the check register and the writing on the check are my husband's although the signature is mine (as the only trustee of this CUGMA account). My having been physically unable to write the check myself (something which I, like most adults, do on a near-daily basis) is clear evidence of the level of coercion to which I was being subjected. I somehow managed to insist that the only way I would release the money was for Jesse to finish the eight grade before he moved to Florida, thus ensuring the validity of my husband's (and Scientology's) perspective that, while not allowing him to leave immediately was "suppressive", it was not completely so. (Scientology's only interest in its parishioners, irrespective of their representations to the IRS and others, is their money, so they were appropriately placated by the "donation." I am sure that it was wholly irrelevant to the Scientology minions whether or not Jesse ever showed up in Clearwater as long as they had his money in hand).
After Jesse completed this expensive course in Florida, far from his California home, Scientology and his father insisted that do another "invaluable" and wildly expensive course which also had to be completed at the Clearwater facility, thus Jesse was away from home for more time missing yet more schooling. When this course was completed my son was finally supposed to be coming home.
Just when Jesse was nearly prepared to come home in the early summer of 1994, I received a phone call from a Scientology "registrar" (high-pressure salesman) at the Clearwater facility. I am certain at this juncture whether this call came from a Scott Chinchar or a person named Kevin Tighe. I was still asleep when the phone rang, leaving me a bit dazed and disoriented. The gist of this "conversation" was that it was necessary for Jesse to be given the funds for the Saint Hill Special Briefing Course (yet one more amazingly expensive, worthless Scientology course) right then and that it was far more important for him to study those materials than it was for him to attend high school. I begged to differ. I was then, and most significantly, told that if I were not willing to release the money (CUGMA) that I was being a suppressive (an SP). The registrar then issued a not-so-veiled threat and told me that, "You know what happens to suppressive people? Don't you?"
Well, as a matter of fact I did know! As a former Scientology-trained counselor and former Scientologist I was quite conversant with the now-oft-denied Hubbard Communication Office Bulletin of of 18 October, 1967, on "Penalties for Lower Conditions,'" "SP Order... Fair game. May be deprived of property or injured by any means by any Scientologist without any discipline of the Scientologist. May be tricked, sued or lied to or destroyed." emphasis added It was, at that moment, as if sirens, lights, whistles and bells were going off all around me. I fully realized that not only was my husband involved in this, but that the only way I would ever get my not quite 16-year old son Jesse home was to agree to send the money, in the amount of approximately $12,500. If I were unwilling to be terrorized and extorted into sending the CUGMA money to Scientology, then Jesse's father would have given him permission to remain in Clearwater forever and I am absolutely certain that I would have never seen or heard from him again.
Not only was I subjected to these institutionally orchestrated incidents of extortion and terrorism involving my son as well as other incidents extortion and terrorism far too numerous to delineate herein, but I was also threatened with being murdered by my husband who has testified to this under penalty of perjury. (I had told him that he needed "deprogramming").
I spent 10 years living in daily unrelenting terror. Members of Scientology's para-military, naval-uniformed Sea Organization ("Sea Org") were invited to my home by my husband to deal with me ("handle" me in Scientology's parlance). The first time this happened I left my then four and eight year old children at home with their clearly demented father and the Sea Org members (having, [fortunately] correctly, assumed that such young, sleeping children would be of little or no interest to the Sea Org members) and disappeared into the woods near my home where I remained for several freezing hours until they gave up and left (this was before the advent of cellular phones, thus I knew that when they were gone there would be no chance of their returning). The second time this happened, an incident about which I have had no independent memory, my husband had invited at least one Sea Org member (male) into my bedroom to "handle" me after I had retired for the evening.
Unfortunately, I am not the only (former) Scientologist to have been terrorized and extorted by this "church".
Abuse, terrorism, and extortion are the daily "coin of the realm" of the Scientology enterprise. Add to this the on-going abuse of process and corruption/blackmailing of public officials and it is not difficult to understand why Mr. Berry has referred to the "Church" of Scientology as "America's Own Taliban"
Like so many others, I am anxiously awaiting the results of your investigation.
I remain your humble servant,
Exhibit A is not scanned in and is not included herein
Pets & Vets, Part 1
Channel 5 Investigator Christi O'Connor Investigates
WHEN YOUR FAMILY PET GETS SICK YOU TRUST YOUR VETERINARIAN TO MAKE HIM WELL. EVERY YEAR IN THE BAY AREA, VETS SAVE THOUSANDS OF LIVES. BUT DO YOU REALLY KNOW ENOUGH ABOUT YOUR ANIMAL'S DOCTOR? CHANNEL 5 INVESTIGATOR CHRISTI O'CONNOR HAS AN EYE-OPENING INVESTIGATION.
EVERY YEAR IN CALIFORNIA ABOUT 500 FAMILIES FILE OFFICIAL COMPLAINTS CLAIMING THEIR VETERINARIAN MISTREATED, HARMED OR EVEN KILLED THEIR PET. IT'S THE JOB OF THE STATE VETERINARIAN MEDICAL BOARD TO DISCIPLINE OFFENDERS AND LET THE PUBLIC KNOW ABOUT THEM. BUT HERE'S AN EXAMPLE OF CASES YOU'D NEVER KNOW ABOUT IF WE DIDN'T SHOW YOU.
NAOMI FINERMAN: "A dog is like your child, and you have them for a span of 15 years. Cleo was our baby."
FOUR YEARS AGO "CLEO" WAS SICK TO HER STOMACH, SO BRIAN FINERMAN TOOK HER TO DR. STEVE ARCHINAL. THE NEXT MORNING...
NAOMI FINERMAN: "I went in at 9 A-M to pick her up and there was no Cleo. She died in the night."
NAOMI'S FINERMAN'S REACTION: "Shock. Total shock."
WHAT CAUSED CLEO'S ALLEGED HEART ATTACK?
DR. STEVE ARCHINAL: "She had pancreatitis, it is a severe recurrent disease."
THE NEXT DAY WHEN THE FINERMENS WENT TO RETRIEVE CLEO'S BODY...
DR. STEVE ARCHINAL: "I went back to get her and she was not there."
CLEO WAS GONE. DR. ARCHINAL BLAMES THE PET DISPOSAL COMPANY FOR ACCIDENTALLY PICKING UP CLEO AND BURYING HER. THE PET CEMETARY DENIES IT DID. IT EVEN EXHUMED BODIES FROM A MASS GRAVE TRYING TO MAKE SURE. CLEO WAS NEVER FOUND.
NAOMI FINERMAN: "I was very hysterical."
CHRISTI O'CONNOR: "They're not even sure Cleo ever died. And they don't know where she is."
DR. STEVE ARCHINAL: "That's what their contention is. I don't know what to say about that."
BETTY BURR: "He stole my dog."
THIS WOMAN BLAMES DR. ARCHINAL FOR THE GRIEF SHE STILL FEELS OVER THE LOSS OF HER FAVORITE OF HER FOX TERRIERS. LITTLE DAISY, WHO WENT TO DR. ARCHINAL WITH A SIMPLE CASE OF DIARRHEA.
FOUR DAYS LATER DR. ARCHINAL TOLD BETTY DAISY HAD A MASSIVE STROKE AND SHOULD BE PUT TO SLEEP. HE EVEN CHARGED HER FOR THE EUTHANASIA.
BETTY BURR: "He said he was sooo sorry she had to be euthanized."
RON WINKLE, BETTY'S BROTHER-IN LAW: "I walked in"
A WEEK LATER BETTY'S BROTHER IN LAW WAS STUNNED WHEN HE SPOTTED DAISY, ALIVE, AND SITTING ON DR. ARCHINAL'S LAP.
RON WINKLE: "I couldn't believe it. I went home and told Betty Daisy is alive!"
DR. ARCHINAL SAYS HE MADE A MISTAKE.
CHRISTI O'CONNOR: "So you're admitting you lied to this woman about her dog being dead. It wasnt dead."
DR. STEVE ARCHINAL: "Yeah. I didnt put her to sleep when I told her I would. She was so cute."
THE NEXT TIME DR. ARCHINAL SAW BETTY SHE HAD POLICE WITH HER.
DR. STEVE ARCHINAL: "Police showed up a couple of days later, wanting to know what If I had this dog. And I said yes."
HE HAD DAISY, BUT SHE WAS DEAD. POLICE FOUND HER IN A FREEZER, WRAPPED UP IN A WET TOWEL.
CHRISTI O'CONNOR: "What's your response to the claim you sudenly euthanized her to cover your tracks?
DR. ARCHINAL: "They already knew I had her. how could I cover my tracks." (sic)
DID DAISY NEED TO DIE? IN A REPORT DR. ARCHINAL WOULD WRITE NOTHING ABOUT A MASSIVE STROKE HE SAID DAISY HAD, WRITING ONLY THAT SHE HAD "CHRONIC INFLAMMATORY BOWEL DISEASE."
THIS PATHOLOGY REPORT DISPUTES EVEN THAT, FINDING "NO EVIDENCE OF DISEASE OR ANOMALIES.
SUE GARANEN, VETERINARY MEDICAL BOARD: "We're wondering why he still has his license."
SUE GARANEN LEADS THE VETERINARIAN MEDICAL BOARD WHICH CONSIDERED REVOKING DR. ARCHINAL'S LICENSE BUT:
SUE GARANEN: "The enforcement process is such that we have penalty guidelines. The only one that says we should revoke is animal cruelty."
SO INSTEAD THE BOARD PUT DR. ARCHINAL ON PROBATION, ALLOWING HIM TO CONTINUE TO SEE CLIENTS WHO WILL MOST LIKELY NEVER LEARN ABOUT HIS PAST. ONE FAMILY WHOSE DOG IS STILL MISSING, ANOTHER WHOSE DOG DIED TWICE, FEELS BETRAYED.
BRIAN FINERMAN: "If this happened to a human you know that man wouldn't be practicing medicine."
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