Scientology Chased, Spied On, Imprisoned Defectors

Ex-staffers say spying, interrogation, imprisonment the norm
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 2, 2009 11:25 AM CST
Scientology Chased, Spied On, Imprisoned Defectors
View of the Scientology headquarters in Germany, in Berlin in this Dec. 7, 2007 file photo.   (AP Photo/Miguel Villagran, file)

(Newser) – The Church of Scientology has a policy of tracking down staffers who try to leave and doing whatever it can to bring them back. The church’s ex-security chief tells the St. Petersburg Times that he read every piece of mail that staffers received, recording any information within, including bank accounts and credit card numbers. The info was used to track down members who “blew,” or left without undergoing a rigorous interrogation.

Ex-staffers say they were pursued and detained, locked in rooms against their will, and subjected to humiliation and manual labor. The efforts were intensified depending on how close the staffer was to church head David Miscavige, and how much damaging information they might have. A church spokesman says the allegations come from the “lunatic fringe,” and accused the Times of “naked bias.” (Read more Scientology stories.)

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