Scientology Crime Syndicate

On 23 Apr 1999 10:32:55 -0700, in alt.religion.scientology you
wrote: n.lindsay@acm.org

In article <7fq39t$3fe@drn.newsguy.com>, arlotte L. Kates wrote:

> I see no one who was there has to date posted a report of the Erlich
> ; this is the information I received on IRC
> from those who were there:

I was there. I happened to have the time off, and it was a chance to meet Dennis for the first time.

Sorry not to post sooner: I thought Keith might. I don't claim to understand all the legal things that I heard.

Proceedings were scheduled for 2pm and started at 3. This was partly because Whyte had a jury ask him questions. Also, we got to watch a couple protest that they hadn't responded to some document because their ex-lawyer sent it to their ex-address. Whyte didn't buy the excuse and ruled that they'd lost.

RTC then fielded 5 people. Dennis sat with 4 MoFo people. About 16 people stayed in the pews, including moi, Keith Henson, a few other SPs, and Helena Kobrin. Keith wore a brown suit jacket over a "Scientology Kills" T-shirt, but Dennis successfully went for a more judge-pleasing look.

Whyte then gave a long, partly rambling speech to the lawyers. He pointed out that MoFo had provided a document about the facts as they saw them, and he wanted a matching one from RTC. (IANAL, but I assume the idea is to reduce the number of points that have to be argued.) He wanted a 16 hour limit for each side. He would allow improperly seized evidence, since disallowing it was not the remedy he favored. He didn't want the worth of Scientology to be an issue. He wanted to hear the context of Dennis' postings as being relevant to purpose (ie intent). He used the word "thread" several times when saying this. He explained his other time committments, and apologised about the scheduling compromises that might happen.

Rosen then spoke for RTC. He turns out to be tall, with a white beard over what might be a double chin. He spoke at length: I got the impression he always speaks at length. He didn't want context to be relevant. He claimed at length that the OT documents are numerous tiny documents, not one big document (thus making any tiny quote into a major quote). He wanted to know if he'd have to spend 3-4 of his 16 hours showing the chain of custody of his copies of Dennis' postings. He said that RTC had refiled some details of the copyright status of various Church documents, and that Helena would testify that the refiling was simply because she'd misread the certificates.

Whyte argued with Rosen's claim that context didn't matter, and refused to change his mind. He's allowing the size of OT documents to be a point of dispute. As for chain of custody, he told Rosen to talk to MoFo about what they'd concede. He asked if cross examination of Helena would risk getting into privileged communications between lawyer and client. Rosen said it wouldn't because it was all Helena's fault. (I didn't see Helena speak a word all day.)

Then it was MoFo's turn. Their man had less to say. He too thought 16 hours was too little, and suggested 25. (Whyte might go for that.) He briefly defended the length of his witness list. He got into the question of courtroom paraphernalia. He said he was asking for the usual stuff. Rosen jumped in to complain about displays that could be seen by the audience. Whyte didn't buy it and told Rosen it was still MoFo's turn. Whyte made a comment - I forget when - that if a lawyer made too many objections, the extra time would be counted as his time, not the other guy's time.

A slightly unshaven RTC lawyer (Hart?) kept looking over at the SPs, as if he wanted to see our reactions. We smiled.

It came out that RTC hadn't seen an order by Whyte that was only a day or so old. MoFo handed them a copy. I think this concerned the trade secret status, and such, but I didn't get a clear picture. Keith -?? In any case, Whyte said it was an order, and he didn't want to hear complaints about it.

Things broke about 5. Keith left to chat with the world. Elvis, Dennis and I had a nice meal together and Dennis flew home.

> * Whyte was observed to be displeased in sidebar when Rosen attempted
> to use the Henson case as a precedent.

Well, Whyte didn't buy the point. I had trouble following the details.

> Overall, it seemed like a pretty good day for the good guys!

I thought so, and Keith and Elvis were tickled. Dennis tries not to set himself up for disappointment. --
Donnald C. Lindsay www.best.com/~dlindsay

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