Once again this week we received a timely and terrific narrative from Bruce Hines, a former top auditor in Scientology whose involvement in the church went back decades.
This time, he was reacting to news we reported about the death of Jane Kember, the woman who at one time ran Scientology's worldwide spy network, the Guardian's Office.
It turned out that Bruce had worked as a Guardian's Office volunteer on a local level, and he had some really interesting things to say about what it was like to engage in espionage for Scientology.
We thought we'd talk some more with him about that.
Continuing our year in review: The stories of October 2022
Jon Atack talked to us on the podcast about Mike Rinder’s new book “A Billion Years” and where it belongs in the Scientology reporting pantheon.
The US Supreme Court didn’t take up Scientology’s petition, and so a stunning California appeals court decision restoring the lawsuit filed by Danny Masterson’s accusers can proceed without being derailed by Scientology’s “religious arbitration.”
Danny Masterson’s attorney Philip Cohen asked to delay trial because of Rick Caruso’s mayoral campaign ads that attacked Scientology. (Cohen’s motion was denied.)
And then, on the eve of trial, we began a series of what would become very popular short video reports from the courthouse.
On Day 2 of the trial, we were stunned to spot prosecutor Deputy DA Reinhold Mueller greeting a known Scientology spy in the court hallway. What was up?
On our first weekend break in the trial, Bruce Hines really delivered with a story about what it was like to audit Mary Sue Hubbard in her years of exile, and then he talked to us for a podcast on the same subject.
On October 18, the Danny Masterson trial seated a jury and shifted into gear with opening statements, its first witness, Jane Doe 1, and even defense attorney Philip Cohen’s first of many motions for a mistrial.
As the second week of testimony began, Marc Headley helped explain who the Scientology spy in the hallway was in a fun new podcast episode.
Then a Scientologist, Shaun Fabos, was called to the witness stand and was declared a hostile witness. He was followed by the second victim, Jane Doe 3. The next day, on October 25, Jane Doe 3 had an epic panic attack on the stand when describing attacks on her family by Scientology. We then summed up her third and final day on the witness stand.
Danny Masterson and Marc Headley had an interesting encounter in the hallway, rocker Cedric Bixler-Zavala testified on behalf of Jane Doe 3, and an LAPD witness made us wonder if Danny might have been prosecuted 18 years ago if a detective could have moved her vacation.
Jeffrey Augustine helped us review the wild second week of testimony in the trial as we prepared for it continue after the Halloween weekend.
A LOOK BACK AT OCTOBER 2021: Dan Ribacoff’s PI firm was not only working for Scientology, it was also being paid to stalk your Proprietor. Chris Shelton took on the academics. Taking a look at L. Ron Hubbard’s nutty cosmology. Revealing the name of the ‘Cooper I/C.’ David Miscavige passed L. Ron Hubbard in tenure. A Toronto woman added her name to the list of Danny Masterson’s victims. How the Sea Org broke Bruce Hines’s spirit. And at the Daily Beast, the mysterious death of Kuba Ka.
A LOOK BACK AT OCTOBER 2020: A leaked document showed Scientology’s outside investments at the time it got tax exemption. Geoff and Robbie Levin previewed the trailer for their documentary. Bijou Phillips said her husband Danny Masterson was the “Strong Island” type with women. Tommy Davis hires Australian attorneys to go after the ‘Black Ops’ leak.
A LOOK BACK AT OCTOBER 2019: Valerie Haney dropped ‘Jane Doe’ and filed a brutal amended complaint. Hanan Islam in handcuffs in a Los Angeles courtroom as her Narconon insurance fraud case got crazy. FreeZone wizard offers the secret to living to 150. Nancy Cartwright’s new trophy for reaching $17 million in giving. Tom Cruise brought Isabella and Connor to the IAS gala for the first time. The Kominsky Method skewers Scientology, and we figured out that creator Chuck Lorre had an extensive Scientology past.
A LOOK BACK AT OCTOBER 2018: Heather Ruggeri told us her story of forced abortion and escape from the Sea Org. The Underground Bunker gave statuses to its own whales. DC District Attorney Stanley Harris schooled Scientology in 1983. Detroit got its Ideal Org. Sylvia DeWall spoke truth to family that had abandoned her. Alec Nevala-Lee’s fine book ‘Astounding’ came out, and he gave us an amazing document he found in his research, when L. Ron Hubbard invented a friendly psychiatrist to rebut Dianetics. On Halloween we released our book with Paulette Cooper, Battlefield Scientology.
A LOOK BACK AT OCTOBER 2017: We received reports that the RPF was a thing of the past. We marveled at the 1989 OT 8 graduation of Margie Zacks. David Miscavige’s new portrait in the belly of the Freewinds wowed us. Aftermath looked at Mace-Kingsley Ranch and talked to Mimi Faust. The vile secret in Dianetics got dissected.
A LOOK BACK AT OCTOBER 2016: Karla Taylor’s lawsuit reminded us of the chances people take when the sue Scientology. We broke the news that Tom Cruise was building a double penthouse in Clearwater. And we ID’d one of the private eyes stalking Leah Remini in Denver.
A LOOK BACK AT OCTOBER 2015: The month began with a lot of Cat White and Jim Carrey and Mark Burton coverage, including the young Hollywood Scientologists she hung out with, and the family in Ireland that had first pointed her toward the church. We went to the London premiere of Louis Theroux’s My Scientology Movie. And thanks to Bryan Seymour and Steve Cannane, our trip to Australia’s cities of Sydney, Melbourne, Adelaide, and Perth was a great success. And our big bombshell: The “Knowledge Reports” about Leah Remini that informed her book.
A LOOK BACK AT OCTOBER 2014: Scientology’s private threat letter to the S.F. Chronicle. A perplexing tale about Bob Duggan, the richest Scientologist in the world. Tom Cruise and his medal in London. Marty Rathbun ambushed at LAX by raving Jenny Linson. L. Ron Hubbard’s amazing 1949 letter to Forrest Ackerman. Mark Ebner finds Gay Ribisi’s plaques.
A LOOK BACK AT OCTOBER 2013: Live-blogging the Garcia mini-trial in Tampa, Scientology denied by the US Supreme Court, interpreting Leah Remini’s epic dance, and live-blogging a dramatic hearing in Laura DeCrescenzo’s lawsuit in Los Angeles.
Thank you for reading today’s story here at Substack. For the full picture of what’s happening today in the world of Scientology, please join the conversation at tonyortega.org, where we’ve been reporting daily on David Miscavige’s cabal since 2012. There you’ll find additional stories, and our popular regular daily features:
Source Code: Actual things founder L. Ron Hubbard said on this date in history
Avast, Ye Mateys: Snapshots from Scientology’s years at sea
Overheard in the Freezone: Indie Hubbardism, one thought at a time
Past is Prologue: From this week in history at alt.religion.scientology
Random Howdy: Your daily dose of the Captain
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