Scientology Crime Syndicate

GSNews <german_scn_news@hotmail.com>

Paris, France
October 2, 1999

by Sabine Heimgaertner, dpa

Paris (dpa) - A true idyll: in the middle of the romantic waterway of the French capitol, the Saint Martin Canal in the east of Paris, a picturesque, lighted houseboat sways back and forth. The background is soft green, along the quay wall gas lanterns spread their warm light - romantic Paris, pretty as a picture.

The French magazine "Paris Match" has just let us know that the boat with the name of "Margaux" is the temporary residence of special commissioners from the US-based Scientology organization. A documentary by the magazine stated that, since April, the American envoy has had the assignment of recruiting new members in the higher centers in France.

Since then the French officials, and primarily Justice Minister Elisabeth Guigou and Alain Vivien, the sect commissioner who reports to her, have again taken up arms, so far without success, against the organization which sees itself as a religious community under its founder, Ron Hubbard. Quite the contrary: since the beginning of September, documents having to do with the Scientology trial at the Marseille State Court have been disappearing by the pound, two weeks before a trial of seven members of the organization, the political leadership is standing on its head and the media are officially flailing them.

"Why this rift between political statements of intention and the fact that nothing to speak of had been done since the last sect report 16 years ago?" railed the political magazine "Le Point" in its last edition.

Guigou described as "very serious" the scandal in Marseille in which an allegedly clueless court employee chased 3.5 tons of court documents into the file shredder, among them the Scientology documents, because she believed that the trial was already over. Upon that, Guigou commissioned the French state attorney general to investigate the mysterious event.

The presiding president of the French National Assembly, Raymond Forni, did not intend to wait for the results: "Not for one second" did he believe in an oversight, much rather the documents were to have been intentionally taken out of circulation in order to impede the proceedings against Scientologists who have been charged with fraud.

Their declared goal is no secret: according to their guru, Ron Hubbard, members are supposed to gain as much influence as possible in public life.

It said in the "Paris Match" report that, in France, the organization controlled at least 100 businesses, including private schools. The number of members was said to be about 10,000.

"Again the question arises of whether certain state agencies have been infiltrated by sect organizations," was even to be heard from France's Premier Minister Lionel Jospin after the Marseille scandal.

Particularly unsettling: the case in southern France is not the first.

A year ago, two out of ten volumes of criminal investigations into matters of Scientology disappeared out of the Parisian Palace of Justice. To this day they have not reappeared. The question arose as to why the presiding judge had had no copies made of the charging documents.

Sect commissioner Alain Vivien, who is openly vilified in the press releases from Scientology, has recently brought up a third case: the rumor that members of organizations categorized as sects in France, but describe themselves as churches, had worked their way into the front offices of former State President Francois Mitterrand, had never been denied, he said.

France is looking almost enviously at Germany, where members of the organization have been under surveillance by the Constitutional Security agency for two years, and who are said to have been hindered in the practice of certain professions with the help of a so-called "sect filter," especially in Bavaria. France does not intend on going that far, at least not officially.

In the "Le Figaro" newspaper, sect specialist Vivien has, however, described Scientology as "extremely dangerous," but he added that the influential group could not be generally banned due to the liberal French laws. On top of that, the Scientology association would have to be implicated in a serious crime first, according to a 1936 law.


German Scientology News Unofficial translations from German-speaking countries Index/link to over 700 articles - http://cisar.org/trnmenu.htm Informational publications - http://members.tripod.com/German_Scn_News For non-commercial use only Have a nice day


The views and opinions stated within this web page are those of the author or authors which wrote them and may not reflect the views and opinions of the ISP or account user which hosts the web page. The opinions may or may not be those of the Chairman of The Skeptic Tank.

Return to The Skeptic Tank's main Index page.

E-Mail Fredric L. Rice / The Skeptic Tank