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Thread: Belgium prosecuting Scientology

  1. #21
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    Default Re: Belgium prosecuting Scientology

    Quote Originally Posted by JustMe View Post
    It would be wonderful if they finally take effective actions. Justice can be slow in many places, it certainly is in the USA, and my goodness but it is very slow in Belgium. BUT it looks like we may get some real action at last.

    About 3 1/2 years ago I had a long brunch with four top Belgium prosecutors. And then spoke with two of them more later.

    This was at an event that Ursula's department sponsored in Germany. We spoke at length about many things including religious cloaking, employment fraud, staff member abuse, financal fraud and money laundering, corporate shell games and how the Belgium scientology operations were really run from the USA by Miscavige and those under him.

    I also explained to them that no matter how many locals they prosecuted in Belgium, the same stuff would happen again and again until those who really run it from abroad could be held liable.

    I answered many of their questions and left with the hope that they may do something to stop organized scientology's fraud and abuse.

    These may not even be the same people but it is good to once again have the hope that something is about to be done.
    My bolding above. I wonder how many countries are NOW comparing notes and tracking the movement of extorted monies and suitcase runners by slappy dictators.

    Oh and Denise did you tell them to keep their documents in titanium vaults with Thetan detectors installed? . Seems other European countries had trouble regarding that in the past.

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  3. #22
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    Default Re: Belgium prosecuting Scientology

    Here is a Belgian television report in French with English subtitles added. The original report aired on December 28, 2012 on the RTBF network.



    Source: Des poursuites contre la scientologie

    Transcript:

    RTBF
    December 28, 2012

    Anchorman: The Church of Scientology is facing prosecution. The Belgian branch of this organization, which is considered sectarian in Belgium, has been criminally indicted. The church is accused of fraud and the illegal practice of medicine. It is explicitly suspected of being a criminal organization. Quentin Warlop reports.

    Journalist (Quentin Warlop): The Church of Scientology of Belgium is now facing judicial prosecution following an investigation concerning the Belgian branch of this American organization and two of its\Ntop officials. The accusations are clear: Illegal practice of the art of healing, fraud, extortion, forgery and use of false documents, breach of privacy, and being a criminal organization.

    In reality, all began in 2008. A complaint was filed. Judge Michel Claise headed the investigation, and raids were conducted in April 2008.

    The complaint alleged that the Church of Scientology offered false employment contracts. At that time, Chadia was unemployed\Nand was searching for a job. She answered a want ad, convinced that it was for a paying job. She was soon disillusioned.

    Want ad: "Non-profit association seeks admin assistant; training provided, no experience required.

    Chadia Moussaoui They talked instead about becoming a member, adopting their way of seeing things, etc. I can't repeat it by heart. I read it in 30 seconds. Instead, it was a contract, I read: "from 2 and a half to 5 years" for becoming a member of the Church of Scientology.

    Journalist: The accusations are specific. But the Church of Scientology's European office is projecting an image of serenity.

    Agnès Bron: Attacks against religion have existed for a very, very long time, except that they used to cast us into the lions' den. Today, they haul us into courts of law. That's the only difference.

    Journalist: Except that Scientology is not\Nconsidered a religion in Belgium and remains a controversial organization in this country.

    Alain Stoffen knows it well. He is a piano teacher who used to be a Scientologist, but he now denounces its methods.

    Alain Stoffen: I was invited to Copenhagen for counseling that would guarantee the growth of my creativity. Without my realizing it, I underwent a process of depersonalization and destructuring that, as I wrote in my book, turned me into a consenting victim of my own mental rape. When I left for Copenhagen, I was doing really well. I was in top shape. When I returned 5 weeks later, I was completely destroyed.

    Journalist: In March 2013, the case will be introduced before the Council Chamber. The prosecutor's office is seeking to have the persons indicted in this case tried in a correctional court.

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  5. #23
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    Default Re: Belgium prosecuting Scientology

    This thread is now linked from front page of Lermanet.com

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  7. #24
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    Default Re: Belgium prosecuting Scientology

    Just posted a report at Infinite Complacency.

    Thanks once again to mnql1 for the invaluable media trawl.

    Federal prosecutors in Belgium have charged Scientology's
    Belgian operation and two leading executives with fraud and
    extortion among other offences. And it looks like they have
    learned from the Paris convictions.


    Jonny Jacobsen

  8. #25

    Default Re: Belgium prosecuting Scientology

    Story is being picked up by other news organizations

    Times247:


    Belgium's public prosecutors have decided to prosecute the Church of Scientology in Belgium as a criminal organisation.

    Belgian media reports Friday said the organisation and several of its members face charges of extortion, fraud, and illegal practice of medicine.

    The Atlantic Wire and Huffington Post are also covering it.
    “The man who does not value himself, cannot value anything or anyone.”
    ― Ayn Rand,

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  10. #26
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    Default Re: Belgium prosecuting Scientology

    The judge who investigated this case, Michel Claise, specializes in white collar crime.



    Born in 1956, Michel Claise was a lawyer for twenty years, and he is also the author of six novels (in French):

    Salle des pas perdus, 2006 Faux et usages de faux, 2008 Le forain, 2008

    Les années paix, 2010 Souvenirs du rif, 2011 Larmes du crime, 2011


    His first novel, Salle des pas perdus ("The Concourse"), was published in 2006 and is about Belgium during World War II. In 2010, he published a sequel set in post-war era Belgium, Les années paix ("The Peace Years"). His 2008 novel Le forain ("The Carny") exposes various fraud schemes and depicts the daily realities of a police fraud squad saddled with a lack of resources. Descriptions of this detective thriller say that it successfully underscores the scope of financial fraud and the lack of general awareness about its dramatic impact on society.

    References:
    http://www.brunette.brucity.be/bib/b...e%20Michel.pdf
    http://www.droit.ulg.ac.be/upload/do...gag_ld_1bd.pdf
    http://www.wilquin.com/2010/01/miche...es-pas-perdus/

  11. #27
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    Default Re: Belgium prosecuting Scientology

    Quote Originally Posted by dchoiceisalwaysrs View Post
    My bolding above. I wonder how many countries are NOW comparing notes and tracking the movement of extorted monies and suitcase runners by slappy dictators.
    .
    This is where there could be real progress in 2013 IMO. It must happen sometime. The Belgians evidently realise that what is true for Belgium is true for every other legal system in the civilised world. If governments can get together at the level of the EU that could be the end of Scientology in Europe. At least they might begin to shorten the process between gathering evidence and court hearings by referring to previous cases.

    As the cult itself makes quite clear, it must persevere with the criminal activity exactly as laid down by LRH.

    And once again it has done CoS no good at all to embrace local politicians. I believe the Vlaamse Belang (a neo-fascist party) has not done well in recent elections and the political fortunes of the cult have no doubt gone down with it.

    PS If Scientology HQ has moved from Brussels to Mecheln, as I think I read somewhere here, what is the building at 100-103 Boulevard Waterloo, Brussels? It is near the Palais de Justice and so handy for court hearings but otherwise rather isolated on the inner ring road, very little pedestrian traffic. Google call it an Information Centre for Scientology.

    They no doubt imagine it is useful to have a propaganda centre near the seat of power (as they now also have in Washington) but it equally opens them up to a lot of unfriendly scrutiny.
    Last edited by secretiveoldfag; 29th December 2012 at 10:59 AM.
    In January 2013 CoS claimed to have more than 11,000 centres in 167 nations.
    From their own websites, they had 465 'churches' in 60 countries.

    http://www.forum.exscn.net/showthrea...363#post789363


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  13. #28
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    Default Re: Belgium prosecuting Scientology

    Have updated the piece at Infinite Complacency with a reply
    I received from Arnaud Palisson to my email asking him which
    case he offered advice on.

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    Default Re: Belgium prosecuting Scientology

    Compare this Belgian response to a complaint over a fraudulent job advertisement with the Australian Fair Work Ombudsman's response to a minor required to work 72 hours and scrub dumpsters with a toothbrush at two in the morning. Just sayin'....

    Edit: (Although to be fair the Australian Parliament is in the process of changing the labour laws)
    Last edited by Purple Rain; 29th December 2012 at 11:41 AM.
    "Of course, now the worst kind of a trap of all, of course, i...is...is a...a beautiful woman. Uh...- that's a theta trap we all know. That this...that this is the worst type, the most deadly, but uh...again that's just a trap."

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  17. #30
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    Default Re: Belgium prosecuting Scientology

    Translation of a French article posted on December 29, 2012 on the website of La Libre Belgique:
    L’étau se resserre sur la Scientologie
    Vice tightening on Scientology

    Saturday, December 29, 2012

    The Federal Prosecutor's Office wants the Church of Scientology put on trial.

    The organization has the scent of sulfur. It is considered a religion in some countries, like the United States, and a cult in other countries, such as France. It has few members in Belgium, a few hundred at most, while claiming more than ten million worldwide. Its most famous member is actor Tom Cruise, who is rumored to hold an important position in the organization founded in 1954 by science fiction writer L. Ron Hubbard.

    But Belgium is an anchor point for the Church of Scientology. Its European headquarters are in Brussels, strategically located in the heart of Europe where lobbying is intense.

    The Church of Scientology may have to defend itself in the Brussels correctional court if the Federal Prosecutor's Office succeeds in obtaining a trial. As was revealed on Friday in De Tijd, subpoenas have been sent requiring the Church of Scientology to argue this question at the Council Chamber in Brussels. The first hearing is scheduled for March 2013. The debates promise to be long. By deciding whether or not to send the case to court, the Council Chamber will provide a signal about the focus of the prosecution and the strength of the accusations. If a trial is ordered, it will not be for several years.

    The case was opened in 2007 as a result of information forwarded by Actiris, the Brussels regional employment office. The Church of Scientology, registered as a non-profit association and based in Uccle, advertised as employment opportunities what in fact were only unpaid jobs.

    The case was assigned to investigating judge Michel Claise, who then issued search warrants. The investigation also led to the discovery of other elements. The charges that emerged are fraud, extortion, violations of privacy laws, the illegal practice of medicine, and operating a criminal organization. The Federal Prosecutor's Office has summoned the Church of Scientology and two of its officials in Belgium to appear before the Council Chamber.

    This is not the only currently open case against the Church of Scientology. In 1997, some former members filed complaints. The information collected by investigating judge Jean-Claude Van Espen fills 74 folders containing thousands of pages. Judge Van Espen ordered searches in 1999. The Federal Prosecutor's Office drew up an indictment recommending a trial in correctional court for twelve individuals and two legal entities: the Church of Scientology of Belgium and Scientology's "Office of Human Rights," a direct offshoot of this wealthy multinational's parent organization.

    The 2007 case does not mention anything about cults or gurus. The allegations are based on the same common law offenses as the first case. The charge of extortion stems from fines that followers must pay in certain circumstances, while the fraud charge is related to the sale of courses with no real value and of overvalued E-meters. The alleged violations of privacy concern the keeping of files in which extremely intimate details about members are recorded.

    The first case was supposed to be examined by the Council Chamber in 2009, but it was "put in the fridge" until the second case was ready. The two cases should eventually be combined.

    Officially, all of this does not worry the Church of Scientology, whose spokeswoman repeated yesterday that these accusations have already been adjudicated in other countries and that the result has been the expansion of Scientology. This, even though the Church of Scientology was convicted in Paris last February and fined a total of 600,000 euros. In the French court case, the Church of Scientology was accused of profiting from the vulnerability of its followers to extract large sums from them.

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