Australian Lawmaker Calls Scientology ‘Criminal Organization’

November 18, 2009

(ChattahBox)—The Church of Scientology founded by science-fiction writer L. Ron Hubbard in 1954, and popular with Hollywood stars, is under increasing international scrutiny for its alleged cult-like practices and undue influence over its members. Now, Australia is following suit in the wake of shocking allegations made by former members, which includes physical and sexual abuse, imprisonment blackmail and forced abortions. A senator from South Australia condemned the church, as a “criminal organization,” and is calling for an investigation.

Australian Senator Xenophon has received numerous letters from former members, alleging criminal behavior that he believes should be investigated by the police. The lawmaker also wants parliament to look into the church’s tax exempt status. “Scientology is not a religious organization; it is a criminal organization that hides behind its so-called religious beliefs,” said Xenophon.

The Independent Senator was appalled by the content of the letters. “The letters received by me which were written by former followers in Australia contains extensive allegations of crimes and abuses that are truly shocking – crimes against them, and crimes they say they were coerced into committing. There are allegations of false imprisonment, coerced abortions and embezzlement of church funds, he told the Senate.

Kevin Rudd, the Prime Minister of Australia supports the lawmaker’s shock over the allegations saying, “I share some of those concerns.”

The Church of Scientology denies the allegations, dismissing them as “about as reliable as former spouses are when talking about their ex-partner.”



3 Responses to “Australian Lawmaker Calls Scientology ‘Criminal Organization’”

  1. Larry on November 18th, 2009 4:20 pm

    If you ban one religion can you ban all religions? Like Native American spiritual Ghost dancing. In December 1890 the United States government banned the Ghost Dance on Lakota reservations.

    How can we move forward as human beings if we keep making the same mistakes?

  2. Old Man Dotes on November 18th, 2009 5:09 pm

    Since the “church” of scientology was founded by L. Ron Hubbard to win a bet made over lunch with John Campbell (“If you want to get rich in America, invent a religion”), it’s difficult to know why anyone would consider it a religious organization.

  3. fawkes on November 20th, 2009 3:29 am

    Larry, as Xenophone said in his speech “Ultimately, this is not about religious freedom. In Australia there are no limits on what you can believe. But there are limits on how you can behave. It is called the law, and no-one is above it.”

    This is not about banning religion.

    There’s something to be said though, of a religious organization where followers have spent their life savings (and more) on courses, books and donations.

    Where people are disconnected from family

    and critics are harassed:

    Should claims of abuse be ignored simply because they are centered around a religion?

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