Palm Beach Post: Scientologists ‘committed fraud upon the court’ West Palm lawyer claims


Rivenbark/Maurice

Palm Beach Post staff writer Jane Musgrave just released a story stating that Luis and Rocio Garcia’s attorney Ted Babbitt has asked Federal judge James Whittemore to declare the Church of Scientology’s arbitration process to be a fraud upon the court. This move on the part of the Garcia’s is electrifying as it goes to the very core of Scientology’s notorious bad faith financial dealings with its own parishioners and former parishioners. Musgrave writes in her article:

In court papers filed in U.S. District Court in Tampa, attorney Theodore Babbitt contends the church made no pretense of conducting a fair and impartial hearing on his clients’ claims that it defrauded them out of $465,000 before they became disillusioned with its tactics. He is asking U.S. District Judge James Whittemore to reverse his decision to allow the Garcias’ lawsuit to be decided by Scientologists in arbitration and instead order that it be decided in a court of law.

“The arbitration was a mockery that no judge should countenance,” Babbitt wrote.

While he suspected the arbitration – the first ever conducted by the church – would be tantamount to “a kangaroo court,” the reality was far worse, he said.

The Garcia’s challenge to Scientology’s first-ever arbitration will be widely watched by former members who have been defrauded by the Church of Scientology — and particularly for advanced payments on services that were never delievered.

Update: Please see Tony Ortega’s article on the Garcia case.

We at the Scientology Money Project consider Scientology’s predatory practice of taking money in advance — and then refusing to refund that money when a person decides to no longer practice Scientology — crosses the line from civil fraud into conspiracy and criminal racketeering. It is our hope that Scientology’s top executives and lawyers will one day be charged in a RICO action. We consider that these people are criminals hiding behind religion. By L. Ron Hubbard’s own definition a criminal is someone who wants something for nothing:

First consider a group which takes in money but does not deliver anything in exchange. This is called rip-off. It is the “exchange” condition of robbers, tax men, governments and other criminal elements. — L. Ron Hubbard – HCO PL 10 Sep 82

The Church of Scientology is criminal in this practice per the definition of its own Founder.

One the four contracts all Scientologists must sign is called the “Religious Services Enrollment Application, Agreement, and General Release.” In this contract, one gives up the legal right to sue the Church of Scientology or to have a lawyer represent them in any dispute with Scientology. One also surrenders the right to a refund of any donations they have made to the organization. (For more details see our article DOX: How Scientology ensnares the unsuspecting in a series of binding contracts). Excerpt:

Here is the dirty Scientology contract at the heart of the dispute; hover your mouse over the document to invoke the controls that will appear at the bottom of the document:

Scientology.Religious.Enrollment.Contract

The new Garcia legal filings:

Garcia-vs-Scientology-Motion-to-Vacate
Garcia-vs-Scientology-Affidavit-of-Luis-Garcia
Garcia-vs-Scientology-Garcia-Suppressive-Declare

 

 

 

Concerning Paul Haggis: An Open Letter from Leah Remini and Mike Rinder


My wife Karen de la Carriere and I want to show our respect for Paul Haggis and our solidarity with Leah Remini and Mike Rinder. Therefore, we are reprinting verbatim Leah and Mike’s open letter that was posted today on Mike’s blog:

There is plenty of reason to worry about defending anyone accused of sexual assault in today’s climate. But the fear of consequences for speaking our truth has not held us back in the past and isn’t about to start now.

We have supported victims of sexual abuse who have reached out to us and have worked with them and law enforcement to ensure justice is done for both victims and the accused. We have avoided trial by media.

In this time of heightened awareness of sexual predators, it is easy to remain quiet when an injustice is being perpetrated for fear of being tarred as politically incorrect. But more important to us than being politically correct is standing up for what we believe is right.

Paul Haggis is a good man who has been a friend to us and so many others. He has championed the rights of women, the LGBT community and has fought for and devoted himself to the underprivileged in the world. These are not “PR stunts” — he has devoted his time, skill and money to worthy causes without fanfare for decades.

Like all of us, Paul Haggis is not perfect. Unlike a lot of us, he is truly a gentleman. A gentle man, with impeccable manners and a generous heart.

Like those of us who were scientologists, we trusted and confided in our church to seek resolution for our shortcomings. What is different about scientology is the detailed records they maintain of everything you tell them. And beyond that, they conduct intense interrogations based on the idea that only when all specifics and details are disclosed can one find relief. The names, dates, and minute details of any indiscretions, and even thoughts, are all recorded.

It is not a crime to be attracted to women (or men). It’s not a crime to flirt. Or to have sexual relations with someone. It might not be acceptable to your significant other (if you have one), but it certainly isn’t criminal nor worthy of newspaper headlines.

Only a scientologist can understand the pressure one feels to offer up even the slightest thing that the scientology organization might consider a transgression of THEIR mores. This information is used against anyone who departs scientology and dares speak their mind. This is not imaginary. There is a documented history of such things. When someone is a declared an “enemy” by scientology, they are fair game.

With the name of everyone one might have thought of, flirted with or taken on a date, it takes little imagination to conjure a string of accusers being contacted and suddenly appearing out of the woodwork.

We expect the next “revelations” about Paul Haggis in this campaign to destroy him to be based on information culled from his scientology files in the form of more “anonymous” accusers, hiding behind a lawyer who will never have to disclose who is paying their bill.

Those who accuse without going to law enforcement, those who seek hush money to keep their stories secret, those who make accusations to the media anonymously – they are suspect. And when the target of these tactics is someone who is a prominent critic of scientology, it is very suspect.

Paul Haggis deserves, based on his record as a gentleman and humanitarian, to be judged when all the evidence has been taken under penalty of perjury in a court of law. Because claims of anonymous accusers who have NOT gone to law enforcement are not credible.

Leah Remini

Mike Rinder

See also this earlier post: Framing Whistleblowers — The Scientology Playbook

The Scientology Money Project welcomes and encourages leaks on the hidden machinations of the Church of Scientology: scienowriter@gmail.com

Kaya Jones on Scientologist Joy Villa

In an interview with Halsey News Network, Pussycat Dolls member Kaya Jones offers her insights on Joy Villa’s character and deceptions. “The amount of lies that I caught was super-alarming,” Jones notes. As a member of the Pussycat Dolls, Kaya Jones enjoyed tremendous fame. Having experienced fame, Kaya Jones suggests that Joy Villa is “scared that this is going to go away.” Trump supporters have now seen through Joy Villa’s opportunism, machinations, and deceptions.

Fast forward to 13:27 forward:

Background: Scientologist Joy Villa gained wide recognition for wearing her MAGA dress to the 2017 Grammy awards. Villa used this recognition to opportunistically position herself as a part of Trump’s “Make America Great Again” (MAGA) movement. Vinnie James immediately spotted Joy Villa as a phony and began working tirelessly to expose her — and often at the price of being wrongly criticized for many months. Vinnie Jones stood his ground.

Joy Villa got on President Trump’s radar and he made a tweet urging her to run for political office. Villa used this tweet to ingratiate herself the White House circles where she had her photo taken with Ivanka Trump and tweeted this widely. Joy Villa deceived true Trump supporters into believing she was something she was not. Scientologist Joy Villa claimed to be a Christian. This is not possible as Scientology forbids “other practices” as we explain below.

Joy Villa announced that she was exploring a run for the US Congress. She formed an exploratory committee as required by US election law. From my perspective, Villa has been using her exploratory committee largely for purposes of self-promotion. Right around the New Year the MAGA people began catching onto Joy Villa’s fraud. At present, Joy Villa seems to be self-imploding in her self-aggrandizing quest for fame. No one is fooled.

And then a bombshell: Tony Ortega exclusively broke the story of Joy Villa’s 2007 domestic violence arrest. Villa had withheld her arrest from the public. Instead, she has pretended to be a Christian when Scientology told the IRS that Scientologists are expected to drop their religious affiliations and become Scientologists on an exclusive basis. In the secret 1993 settlement between IRS and Scientology, David Miscavige’s attorney Monique Yingling told the IRS:

“Although there is no policy or Scriptural mandate expressly requiring Scientologists to renounce other religious beliefs or membership in other churches, as a practical matter Scientologists are expected to and do become fully devoted to Scientology to the exclusion of other faiths. As Scientologists, they are required to look only to Scientology Scriptures for the answers to the fundamental questions of their existence and to seek enlightenment only from Scientology. Thus, a Scientologist who grew up in the Jewish faith who continues formal membership in his synagogue and attends services with his family violates no Scientology policy or tenet. On the other hand, such a person is not permitted to mix the practice of his former faith into his practice and understanding of Scientology so as to alter orthodox Scientology in any way.”

The reason Scientologists are “expected to and do become fully devoted to Scientology to the exclusion of other faiths” is because L. Ron Hubbard considered all other religions to be what he called “R6” alien implants. The Church of Scientology will not disclose to the public Hubbard’s secret teachings about Jesus Christ, Islam, or any other religion. Only the most indoctrinated Scientologists get to read Hubbard’s secret teachings about Jesus Christ. As a public service, therefore, the Scientology Money Project discloses these teachings.

The first of Hubbard’s secret teachings are from the original OT VIII level. These materials are corroborated by George White who did the original OT VIII level and read the materials himself. White discusses this in his book Lucifer’s Bridge: Scientology’s Lost Paradise. The materials are corroborated by others as well. In the original OT VIII. Hubbard called himself the Antichrist and denounced Jesus as a “lover of young men and boys.” L. Ron Hubbard:

No doubt you are familiar with the Revelations section of the Bible where various events are predicted. Also mentioned is a brief period of time in which an archenemy of Christ, referred to as the Antichrist, will reign and his opinions will have sway. All this makes for very fantastic, entertaining reading but there is truth in it. This Antichrist represents the forces of Lucifer (literally, the “light bearer” or “light bring”), Lucifer being a mythical representation of the forces of enlightenment, the Galactic Confederacy. My mission could be said to fulfill the Biblical promise represented by this brief Antichrist period. During this period there is a fleeting opportunity for the whole scenario to be effectively derailed, which would make it impossible for the mass Markabian landing (Second Coming) to take place. The Second Coming is designed, among other things, to trigger a rapid series of destructive events….

For those of you whose Christian toes I may have stepped on, let me take the opportunity to disabuse you of some lovely myths. For instance, the historic Jesus was not nearly the sainted figure he has been made out to be. In addition to being a lover of young boys and men, he was given to uncontrollable bursts of temper and hatred that belied the general message of love, understanding and other typical Marcab PR. You have only to look at the history his teachings inspired to see where it all inevitably leads. It is historic fact and yet man still clings to the ideal, so deep and insidious is the biologic implanting. It is a good joke that the Galactic Confederacy is associated with the Serpent in the Garden, the Beast and other emissaries of the “Prince of Darkness.” Yet in certain passages and esoteric interpretations of the Bible (much of which has been taken out and effectively suppressed for centuries) as well as the Kabbalah, the truth reveals itself quite nicely for the clever and the ungullible.

Those Scientologists who completed the original OT VIII level reacted so badly to the release these materials that Scientology withdrew the materials and released a redacted version of OT VIII.

When the original OT VIII level materials were introduced into the court record by Steven Fishman in Church of Scientology International v. Fishman and Geertz, (Case No. CV 91-6426 (HLH (Tx) U.S. District Court for the Central District of California), the Church and claimed hem to be spurious.

However, what puts the lie to this is that when Scientology obtained a federal warrant to raid Arnie Lerma’s house in 1995 to confiscate OT materials, Scientology seized the original OT VIII material and catalogued it as HCO BULLETIN OF 5 MAY 1980 with RTC as the copyright owner. Scientology used the materials as evidence against Lerma until it was realized they would be scandalous in the public court record. HCO BULLETIN OF 5 MAY 1980 was subsequently dropped as evidence after initially being introduced as evidence. This begs the question: If the original OT VIII materials were spurious, then why did Scientology seize them in the raid?

Read OT VIII Part B from the court record on Karin Spaink’s blog.

Writing under his screen name Path of Buddha, George White posted a comment on Marty Rathbun’s blog in response to a question about the original OT VIII materials:

Windhorse,

The anti-Christ OT8 that I did on the Freewinds was on July 17, 1988. I met miscavige on the Freewinds just before he canned it. I remember because I met him on the main deck for a supper buffet. My two FSM’s did it before me and very candidly we discussed the anti-Christ, the synthetic Karma, and the spontaneous combustion of anyone who could not get it all right. Hugh Urban agrees with me as he has also researched it at Ohio State. The religious department there has known about at for about five years. It is common knowledge in academic circles

Much Metta,
George M. White

Bob Grant did the original OT VIII on the Freewinds and also confirmed on Rathbun’s blog that it contained the Antichrist reference and Hubbard’s remark that Jesus was a lover of young men and boys.

In this next Fair Use excerpt of Hubbard speaking, we pick up his lecture where he is talking about how everyone on this planet was “implanted” to believe they had been crucified. Hence, Hubbard says the man on the Cross is an “everyman” implant shared by all humans. Hubbard then says there was no Christ:

In his teachings, Hubbard attacked Jesus and Christianity as implants:

“Also the Christian Church used (and uses) implanting (with a squirrel version of the “7s”). These gangsters were the Nicomidians (sic) from lower Egypt who were chased out for criminal practices (implanting officials). They took over the Niocene (sic) Creed before the year zero, invented Christ (who comes from the crucifixion in R6 75m years ago) and implanted their way to “power”. The original Nicomidians (sic) date about 600 BC and people who were Christ date at 75m years ago. ” – L. Ron Hubbard, Resistive Cases, Former Therapy, HCOB 23 Sep 1968.

For a long while, some people have been cross with me for my lack of co-operation in believing in a Christian Heaven, God and Christ. I have never said I didn’t disbelieve in a Big Thetan but there was certainly something very corny about Heaven et al. Now I have to apologize. There was a Heaven. Not too unlike, in cruel betrayal, the heaven of the Assassins in the 12th Century who, like everyone else, dramatized the whole track implants – if a bit more so. The symbol of the crucified Christ is very apt indeed. It’s the symbol of a thetan betrayed.”, – L. Ron Hubbard, HCOB 11 May, 1963

“Further, we have our hands on an appalling bit of technology where the world is concerned. With rapidity and a Meter it can be shown that Heaven is a false dream and that the old religion was based on very painful lie, cynical betrayal.” – L. Ron Hubbard, HCOB 11 May, 1963

“Religion does much to keep the assumption in restimulation, being basically a control mechanism used by those who have sent the preclear into a body. You will find the cross as a symbol all over the universe, and the Christ legend as implant in preclears a million years ago.”, Professional Auditors Bulletins, vol. 2, p. 26 , copyright 1954.

“Now we say this thing called a thetan is capable of producing all sorts of things, and we say this is THE person. So therefore, we differ enormously from the Christian statements on the subject. They say, ‘you, son, must save your soul.’ The fellow says, ‘I don’t have one!’ So therefore, the christian religion cannot possibly be true…and they lose all kinds of converts this way. Somebody saving his soul is doing something very interesting. He evidently has something set up over here, that has probably, mass, that he says is his soul! And then he goes about saving it and it turns out to be a demon circuit called “Mama,” or something. Now he expects THIS to go to heaven. (laughs)”, Clearing Congress Lecture (videotape), L. Ron Hubbard, 1958.

” Men, then … a whole lot of people will say carelessly ‘Well, God is everywhere’, remember that this was an idea which was introduced rather lackerly in christian religion. The God of which they speak, of whom they speak continually, eh Yahweh, Lord knows how it’s produ.. pronounced, because it is so secret, that nobody is really is supposed to be able to pronounce it, so they ommitted all of the vowels in the word, and they spell it only with it’s consonants. So Lord knows how this word is to be pronounced, but the more agreed upon pronunciation amongst scholars so they can talk about it is Yahweh. And this is the Christian God. But he lives in a trunk with a leopard skin. That’s right, that’s the full story of it. “

” Old therapies include the 2000 yr ago plus or minus Aoscuplepian drug treatment (hillabore) which produced a conclusion and coma, and in which the nut practitioner made up as a God and “visited” the patient in a “dream”. This outfit was all over the ancient world. — – L. Ron Hubbard, Resistive Cases, Former Therapy, HCOB 23 Sep 1968. “

And finally, David Miscavige speaking on the importance of Scientology:

“For while you’ve often heard it said ‘we are the only major religion to emerge in this 20th century,’ the truth is more than that. In fact, we are the only new religion. Not a reinterpretation of some ancient doctrine, but the only original scriptural voice in the last 2,000 years.”, International Scientology News #7, David Miscavige, March 13, 1998

Look at the arrogance of Scientology cult leader David Miscavige: He states that Scientology is the “only original scriptural voice in the last 2,000 years.” What Miscavige fails to mention is Scientology’s $460,000 price tag to reach OT VIII only to discover that Jesus was an alien implant!

Truth Revealed: The Church of Scientology Finally Explains How It Has Millions of Members

The Church of Scientology International (CSI) is the “Mother Church” of Scientology. As the official Mother Church, CSI makes this bold statement on one of its official websites:

The truth is that there are millions of individuals who participate in Scientology services and apply it to their lives.

In the very next sentence, CSI identifies the source for its claim that millions of individuals participate in Scientology:

This is according to the individual Churches that maintain the names of their parishioners and a record of their progress up the Scientology Bridge.

While all parishioners’ records are securely maintained at their local Church, the names and addresses of members of all Churches and Missions are provided to Church of Scientology International (CSI), which maintains the mailing list for Church magazines disseminated to all Scientologists. Our numbers come from this international list.

Parishioners’ records are not securely maintained and can be, in fact, culled by OSA to find dirt on Scientologists. Parishioners’ records can also be culled to help regges find “buttons” to raise more money. Laura Dieckman’s legal case has shown us that over 100 people have access to pc folders. And yet CSI claims that Parishioners’ records are securely maintained. Given that this statement is false, we must also treat with scrutiny CSI’s claim “that there are millions of individuals who participate in Scientology services and apply it to their lives.”

There are five glaringly obvious problems with CSI’s claim that millions of people are participating in Scientology:

1. Who are the people at the local Scientology churches sending the names of their members to CSI? The answer is that local staff members are sending the lists of names to CSI. This is a problem because CSI has a policy in which it declares that it does not stand behind any statements or claims made by staff members:

CSI’s claim that “there are millions of individuals who participate in Scientology services and apply it to their lives” is made by Scientology staff members and therefore CSI, per its own policy, takes no responsibility for this claim or any claims made by staff members. Absent verification by an independent third party audit, the staff members reporting millions of members must be assumed to be engaged in false reporting. I say this because there is no empirical evidence whatsoever that Scientology has millions of members — and we certainly can’t believe Scientology’s staff members given the fact that CSI itself refuses to stand behind statements made by its own staff members.

2. CSI designated the IAS as the official membership organization of Scientology. Therefore, only the IAS can make a true and accurate statement of membership numbers. However, the IAS is not a part of the Church of Scientology:

Applications to join the IAS are sent to the IAS. The Church of Scientology International told the IRS that it doesn’t even get a copy of IAS applications:

4. The Church of Scientology International told the IRS that the Church does not have access to IAS records:

The information requested regarding IAS receipts and expenditure is voluminous and not readily available to CSI or any other Scientology-related organization.

5. How can CSI possibly know how many Scientologists there are if it doesn’t know how  many people have applied to the IAS for membership? The answer is that CSI has to rely on statements made by staff members. However, as we said, CSI doesn’t stand behind statements made by staff members.This is all more Scientology nonsense. And yet there it is on Scientology’s website:

DOX: Scientology’s pricey Florida ‘spiritual mecca’ keeps up its value in latest tax records

(This piece was published on Tony Ortega’s Underground Bunker on 12.2.2017. It is republished here for archival purposes)

Jeffrey Augustine is once again keeping us up to date on Scientology’s financial documents. In this case, he has new figures on how much just one of many Scientology’s entities is worth, according to newly available tax documents.

In 2006, a change in the law required all non-profit organizations — even churches — to submit tax returns known as 990-T forms if they generated what is known as “unrelated business income.” A few years ago, I began finding and turning over to the Underground Bunker the 990-Ts for Scientology’s various entities.

Often, that income is fairly modest. But what’s more important for our purposes is that on each 990-T form there’s a box to fill out for “book value.” In other words, these organizations are asked to estimate their value in assets.

That requirement has led to a rare window into Scientology’s riches, and we like to keep up on the latest changes in those values.

In this case, I’ve found new documents related to the Flag Service Organization (FSO), the entity that runs Scientology’s Flag Land Base in Clearwater, Florida. This is where wealthy Scientologists from around the world come for expensive high-level auditing and other services. And keep in mind, FSO is just one of many entities that make up the Scientology movement, but it’s one of the more important ones.

So let’s see how the value of FSO has changed:

2008: $234.8 million
2009: $246.5 million
2010: $251.9 million
2011: $210.1 million
2012: $290.7 million
2013: $218.2 million
2014: $241.1 million
2015: $257.5 million

And here’s what that change in value looks like…

FSO is not the most valuable entity in the Scientology orbit. When we first began gathering these tax returns, for the year 2011, the Church of Scientology International was worth $790.8 million and the Church of Spiritual Technology listed a value of $434.4 million, for a total of $1.2 billion just for those two entities.

But even if it’s a distant third, the Flag Service Organization is steadily increasing in value.

This is consistent with what the newest defector from Flag told the Bunker recently. Peter Nyiri, who made a dramatic escape to freedom several months ago, said that the Flag Land Base is still bringing in huge income, of $2 million to $4 million a week — by starving the “outer orgs” and pressuring Scientology’s shrinking membership to come to Flag as often as they can for services.

Looking more carefully at recent returns by the FSO with the help of financial expert Dr. Jeff Wasel, we found a few noteworthy items…

In Part V of Flag’s 990-T returns filed in the period 2008-2013, FSO checked “Yes” on question 1 to indicate that it had an “interest in or other authority over a financial account (bank, securities, or other) in a foreign country.” Flag filled in the line to inform the IRS that it has financial interests in the United Kingdom and Australia. What are Flag’s financial interests in the United Kingdom and Australia? More importantly, how are they moving this money, and declaring these movements to the appropriate authorities, given these movements are between foreign entities?

In Part V of Flag’s 2014 and 2015, Flag checked “No,” indicating that it no longer had an “interest in or other authority over a financial account (bank, securities, or other) in a foreign country.” What happened to Flag’s financial interests in the United Kingdom and Australia?

In examining the 2013-2015 990-T’s, my personal view is that Flag’s stated costs for building improvements are either padded or excessive. For example, NOVA HRC is the firm that does the actual renovations on Scientology’s buildings (as well as many other clients). In the NOVA portfolio we have two hard data points:

1. Nova gives a project cost of $18,000,000 to renovate 393 guest rooms at the Ritz Carlton in Laguna Niguel, California. This is $45,801 per guest room.

2. Nova gives a project cost of $27,000,000 to renovate 220 guest rooms Flag’s Fort Harrison hotel. This is $122,727 per guest room. This seems utterly absurd and suggests, in my opinion, that the IRS should open an inquiry into why Scientology spends so lavishly on parishioner guest rooms. Scientology orders its parishioners to stay at Flag hotels and does not have to compete with secular hotels, so why the excessive spending?

In the Flag tax returns we see approximately $80,000 spent on exercise equipment for two properties. Additionally, their 2013 990-T form states that they spent some $14,296,680 on “improving” the Sandcastle Restaurant, used for public dining. For this money, it better be “Nobu” quality in food and atmosphere! The price mark-up on restaurant fixtures, as well as the same convoluted permitting process as that of the construction industry, are rife with the same potential for what seems to be excessive spending. What exactly is going on inside of Scientology and Nova that seems to be driving up renovation costs as compared to lower costs in the secular marketplace?

On a final note, even with the opening of the Super Power building on November 17, 2013 the Flag Land Base does not appear to have “boomed” whatsoever as a result of this edifice. Valued at $80,000,000, the Church of Scientology raised $145,000,000 for the project. Where did all the extra money go?

— Jeffrey Augustine

Flag Service Organization IRS 990-T forms 2008-2015

FSO Book Value 2015 $257,506,278

FSO Book Value 2014 $241,134,104

FSO Book Value 2013 $218,154,319

FSO Book Value 2012 $290,655,686

FSO Book Value 2011 $210,075,914

FSO Book Value 2010 $251,896,300

FSO Book Value 2009 $246,516,017

FSO Book Value 2008 $234,764,273

Prager University Spokesperson & Scientologist Joy Villa Calls the Nation of Islam Ignorant & Ungrateful


Prager University has appointed Scientologist Joy Villa to be its latest spokesperson. Joy Villa also serves as a salesperson for Scientology’s e-meters.

In a Prager University YouTube video, Joy Villa attacks those who take the knee during the US national anthem as ignorant and ungrateful:


Joy Villa speaking in the Prager University video:

In America, where you are free to sit or stand during the national anthem, sitting when you should be standing is more a statement about you than about America.

You come off, frankly, as ignorant and ungrateful: ignorant about a country that works to correct its faults, and ungrateful for the opportunity and freedom that it offers all its citizens.

For that, I’m standing.

I’m Joy Villa for Prager University.

In 2016, Scientologist and Nation of Islam leader Minister Louis Farrakhan stated that the Nation was 100% behind Colin Kaepernick’s taking a knee for the national anthem:

For Joy Villa and Prager University to insult Mr. Farrakhan and the Nation of Islam, or anyone else for that matter, as being “ignorant” and “ungrateful” on their right to take a knee during the national anthem is hateful and bigoted. However, it is hardly surprising as Joy Villa is a hypocrite and an opportunist who has suddenly reinvented herself as a devout Republican. She will say whatever Dennis Prager and her new Republican friends want her to say.

As Vinnie James discovered and announced to his Twitter following, Joy Villa purged her Twitter account of all mentions of Scientology after she realized that the horrednous reputation of Scientology could be a problem amongst her newfound ultraconservative Republican friends.

What is very telling is that Joy Villa has pictures on her Twitter feed from her dominatrix days whereas she has scrubbed every mention of Scientology:


Joy Villa is a Scientologist and she is lying about it. She preaches Jesus on Twitter while she sells Scientology e-meters and promotes Scientology in Scientology’s magazines.

Bottom line: Christianity and Scientology are antithetical. Joy Villa knows this and yet she lies about it. However, as Christianity sells well to Republicans then Joy Villa will be a Christian if that is what her new audience wants to hear. What her new audience also wants to hear is that only ignorant ingrates would refuse to stand during the national anthem.

My position on the national anthem at sporting events is simple: Professional sports is a for-profit commercial enterprise. Why should any business require its customers and employees to stand for the national anthem? Is this even legal? When you buy a car, go shopping, or take a commercial flight on an airplane you are not required to stand for the national anthem. In my view, professional sports should discontinue the use of the national anthem at the beginning of the games. The same applies to NASCAR and all other professional sports.

Professional sports teams and their leagues are money-making businesses that are like any other business: They work to make the maximum amount of money and pay the minimum amount in taxes. This is why food, drink, and parking is so damned overpriced at sporting events. The NFL charges top dollar for its licensed merchandise. So what does the NFL’s profitability have to do with the national anthem? Nothing at all. The national anthem is just NFL marketing and positioning. If the playing of the national anthem at all professional sports events stopped tomorrow, and I wish it would, professional sports would go on making money.

The NFL has stupidly allowed its games to become a litmus test for patriotism. In doing so, it’s income has tanked and it is facing a potentially disastrous lawsuit from Colin Kaepernick.
Scientologist Joy Villa has now obnoxiously jumped into the fray courtesy of Dennis Prager and Prager University.

Wiki on Dennis Prager:

According to NPR, Prager “often targets multiculturalism, Muslims and LGBTQ people.” Prager’s “inflammatory views and past statements about gays, liberals and others” have stirred controversy.

Prager opposes same-sex marriage. He has suggested that same-sex marriage will lead to polygamy and incest In 2014, he claimed that the “heterosexual AIDS” crisis was something “entirely manufactured by the Left.”

Prager endorsed Donald Trump in the 2016 presidential election… Friedersdorf noted that Prager had in 2011 said that Trump’s profanity “render[ed] him unfit to be a presidential candidate, let alone president”; that he could not “trust the integrity or conscience of a man or woman who publicly humiliates his or her spouse” through adultery; that those who lie to besmirch the names of others cannot be trusted; and that “any human being with a functioning conscience or a decent heart loathes torture”.

In 2015, Prager headlined the title of one of his columns about the Iran nuclear agreement, “1938 and 2015: Only the Names Are Different”, implying that Obama was the equivalent of Neville Chamberlain whose Munich Agreement with Hitler is widely regarded as a failed act of appeasement toward Nazi Germany.

Billionaire Bob Duggan, the Paradise Papers, and the Scientology Money Club

The Scientology Money Project did an article recently on the US Bankruptcy Court’s denial of Matt and Kathy Feshbach’s attempt to discharge $3.8 million in back taxes via bankruptcy. This led me to do further research on Matt Feshbach’s Bahamian stem cell medical company called Okyanos Heart Institute. The result an article on Matt Feshbach and Okyanos at the Scientology Money Project. In the course of my research I found Feshbach and his business partner and fellow Scientology OT Manuel Vianna listed in the Paradise Papers:

BD.1

Curious as I am about Scientology and its sources of money, I checked into Okyanos and discovered its $14.2 million dollars in capitalization largely came from a Scientologist named Ali Shawkat, a man whose father is Mudhar Shawkat, a former member of the Iraqi parliament. The ICIJ Offshore Leaks Database page on Mudhar Shawkat states that Appleby Global — an offshore law firm that some have compared to the notorious Panamanian firm of Mossack Fonseca — set up the “Passion Group S.A.” for the Shawkat family. “S.A.” is a business term meaning “Society Anonymous.” A person who owns shares in an S.A. corporation can have those shares held by an offshore law firm. An S.A. grants a certain degree of anonymity.

There were concerns at Appleby about the Shawkat money and its Passion Group S.A., this according to an internal Appleby e-mail leaked by the Paradise Papers:

According to 2008 confidential emails, the lawyer representing Shawkat and his son, Ali, asked Appleby to hold in escrow about $140 million, the proceeds of the sale of the Shawkats’ shares in a joint venture with a Kuwaiti telecommunications company. The law firm refused that request but accepted them as clients later in 2008.

Appleby set up the Passion Group Trust for the benefit of Mudhar Shawkat’s family members and registered three affiliated companies in the British Virgin Islands in 2008 and 2011, according to the files. Shawkat was identified in the Appleby documents as an “additional settlor” (a person who creates and funds a trust) of the Passion Group Trust and as a shareholder of Passion Investment Ltd., the trust’s investment arm.

However, upon the incorporation of a not-for-profit entity, which was also a beneficiary of the trust, concerns about the Iraqi family’s reported association with Chalabi [Ahmed Chalabi, 1944-2015. A controversial Iraqi politician.] emerged at the law firm. “It is suspicious,” an Appleby employee wrote in an email, “that they are setting up a charitable company offshore [Passion for Change S.A.] for funds coming out of Iraq – there does not seem any benefit other than lack of accountability in doing so.”

A Paradise Papers page on Mudhar Shawkat shows the relationships for the Shawkat family and its Passion group; there are ties to Amman, Jordan and the British Virgin Islands:

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In a development that could portend trouble for the Shawkat’s and all other Appleby clients, Appleby confirmed in October 2017 that it had been the victim of a massive computer hack. Some in financial circles are saying the hacked information from Appleby Global will amount to a Panama Papers II. In November 2017 Appleby released a less than reassuring statement to its clients:

We wish to apologise to our clients and to our colleagues for the difficulties which have arisen from this incident. We remain committed to working with each and every client to talk to them about what has happened so that they can understand its impact on them and in order to support them with their own reporting requirements.

I note in passing that when your offshore legal firm tells you that it will help you understand the impact of it being hacked and will support you with your “reporting requirements” this is not a good thing, particularly if one has not self-reported.

Ali Shawkat and his wife Noor donated $5 million to the IAS. This was covered in a 2014 article by Tony Ortega at the Underground Bunker.

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Ali and Noor Shawkat receiving their IAS trophy for donating $5,000,000

Things were intriguing at this point so I called upon my erstwhile colleague Dr. Jeff Wasel. As Jeff and I learned from the Okyanos website, Ali Shawkat’s Passion Group invested money in Feshbach’s stem cell company:

FREEPORT, The Bahamas, March 18, 2014 – Okyanos Cell Therapy, whose mission it is to bring a new standard of care and a better quality of life to patients with coronary artery disease (CAD) using adult stem cell therapy, announced today it has raised $8.9 million in its Series B offering. Passion Group founder Ali Shawkat led the round and is a visionary entrepreneur-investor with success in a diverse set of industries including cellular services, telecom, media and healthcare.

Shawkat’s investment in Feshbach’s Okyanos is borne out by the Panama Papers’ mention that the Shawkat family invested in two medical companies:

In the following months, in 2009, the leaked files show that the Shawkats transferred more than $30 million to the family trust and one of its affiliated companies, some of which was converted into shares. Board meeting minutes of Passion Investment Ltd. chaired by Shawkat’s son show that from 2013 to 2016, the company has invested in two medical companies and in an Iraqi dealership for Peugeot cars.

On a side note to this story, Freewinds Captain Mike Napier’s son Sean Napier appears on the Okyanos website as the Director of IT & Operations:

Former US Ambassador to the Bahamas John Rood was brought in by Matt Feshbach to serve as a Director at Okyanos Holdings Co LLC. Because the Bahamian government had to pass a law allowing Okyanos to operate, Former Ambassador Rood’s contacts were undoubtedly invaluable. On a related note, John Rood is the Chairman of the Vestcor Companies Inc. This firm invests in multifamily dwellings. Scientology OT8 Grant Cardone’s firm Cardone Acquisitions follows the same business model as Rood’s Vestcor Companies Inc. This raises the question: Was Cardone introduced to John Rood via Matt Feshbach? If so, was Cardone inspired to get into investing in apartment buildings by seeing Rood’s success?

I found three UCC filings on Okyanos Operating Company Ltd. A “UCC filing” is an instrument that allows a lender to secure its interest on equipment for which they loaned money to a debtor to purchase. UCC’s are routinely used where a company borrows money to purchase expensive office equipment, phone systems, computer systems, medical equipment, etc. In the event of a default on the loan, the UCC protects the lender as it prevents the debtor from selling the equipment. The UCC also allows the lender to take physical possession of the equipment if the firm goes bankrupt. The UCC gives the lender first priority over other creditors in a bankruptcy.

The three UCC’s filed on Okyanos were filed by Prince’s Gate LLC of Santa Monica. A quick check shows Prince’s Gate LLC to be an entity owned by EarthLink founder and Scientologist Sky Dayton:

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According to news reports, Black Beret Life Sciences of Houston acquired Okyanos in a leveraged buyout in July 2017. This begs the question: Why would BBLS need to use an LBO to acquire an insolvent company? BBLS has cash. Indeed, in January 2017 Affigen announced a $17 million Series A led by Black Beret Life Sciences.

Genuine First Aid International Ltd

In the map below of the Shawkat offshore money we see a company with the innocuous name of Genuine First Aid International Ltd. A search of the Paradise Papers shows that Robert “Billionaire Bob” Duggan and Ali Shawkat to be shareholders and directors of Genuine First Aid International Ltd.:


Another Panama Papers diagram shows the relationship of Robert “Bob” Duggan with the Shawkat’s; Amman, Jordan; Beirut, Lebanon; and the British Virgin Islands via Duggan’s ties to Genuine First Aid International Ltd:

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What is Genuine First Aid International Ltd.? It is a company registered in the British Virgin Islands and based in Fujian, China. The company’s Chairman is a Danish Scientology OT8 named Michael Holstein. His Scientology Completions page is extensive:

Michael Holstein’s LinkedIn page leads to dietary supplements, vitamins, diabetes supplements, etc:

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Another Panama Papers diagram shows Ali Shawkat to be a director of Genuine First Aid International Ltd:

Yet another Panama Papers diagram shows Robert Duggan to be a shareholder of a company called Spang CM Ltd:

A more micro Panama Papers diagram shows a tighter Duggan relationship to Spang and Genuine First Aid International Ltd:

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While Spang CM Ltd. is registered in the Cayman Islands (tax identification number: 139726), the company is a Chinese manufacturing firm:

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The Scientology Money Club Investigation, as Dr. Wasel and I are calling it, will take a look into the intertwining  world of wealthy Scientologists and their money. We are not alleging anything untoward whatsoever. Rather, we are examining linkages amongst Scientology whales who donate big money to the IAS. That these relationships have been found in the Panama and Paradise papers is part of what Dr. Wasel and I will discuss in an upcoming podcast.

Dr. Wasel’s comments on offshore corporations:

So why go offshore? Well first, “offshore” has many connotations, and can denote both legal and illegal financial behavior. There are legitimate reasons for high net worth individuals to maintain offshore companies, trusts, and other “vehicles”, mainly to lessen one’s tax obligation or to ensure privacy in sensitive, though legal financial matters.

Other reasons include political instability or corruption in their home country, or the registration of expensive assets such as planes and boats, as well as financing the associated insurance costs. Lawful tax avoidance involves organizing one’s financial affairs to legally minimize the amount of tax to be paid, versus tax evasion, which involves hiding one’s assets altogether, from the responsible reporting authorities.

Large corporations such as Apple, Google, and others use favorable tax regimes in Ireland as an example of tax mitigation/avoidance, as do individuals in the Caribbean, Liechtenstein, Switzerland, and other “tax havens”.  These “Offshore Financial Centers” (OFCs) exist primarily to provide anonymity and tax regimes favorable to the investor and not the regulator; where the illegality occurs, is when an individual or entity fails to declare an interest in an OFC to their respective nation’s tax authority or financial regulator. The use of OFCs is significant; while verifiable data is difficult to collect, it’s estimated that some 20 percent of all private wealth is located in OFC’s, as is an estimated 75 percent of the captive insurance market.

The nexus of the OFC phenomenon is geography. In other words, “sunny places for shady people” to some extent, though the post-9/11 regulatory environment has drastically altered this perception. Indeed, The Cayman Islands, Bermuda, and other former “light touch” OFC locales, now often exceed US and EU anti-money laundering and tax reporting requirements.

That said, many significant loopholes exist in the structure of OFC’s, loopholes that, in a variety of ways, are structurally resistant to regulation, and still offer the less-than scrupulous individual or entity plenty of ways to create private banks, phantom or “shell companies” and fake trusts, and to hide money and other assets. One such option within this structure is the use of “bearer shares”, a term often reflected in the associated charts in this story. Implicit in the many OFCs available to the “sophisticated” investor, is the International Business Company, (IBC), which is a corporate vehicle that can be owned anonymously, and does not do business in the country where it’s domiciled (has physical residence), and usually located in an extremely “light touch” regulatory and tax locale. An IBC can be created online in less than an hour, involves minimal regulatory and ownership filings, and has limited liability. It’s unrestricted in the type of business it can entertain, and an IBC can consist of multiple sub-entities, complicating any future audit trail.

The main ownership stake in an IBC is a bearer share, which simply means that if you physically own the shares, you own the company, yet nowhere is it recorded that you physically hold them. In essence, the IBC is a truly “portable company”, allowing one to schlep a veritable business empire in one’s briefcase.

Adding to the attractiveness of portability, is a lack of accountability, in that most IBC’s allow for “nominee” directors; that is, hired-hand “directors”, who are usually employees of the registering agent, say a corporate registration house in Curacao. Thus there is no “official” record of who owns the bearer shares, and therefore, the company’s beneficiaries, nor is there any direct owner – a responsible fiduciary –  that can be held responsible for the company’s actions. While a more thorough discussion of all the permutations of this murky financial world is beyond the remit of this article, suffice to say, it’s the concepts of “plausible deniability” and anonymity, as well as the ability to hide one’s financial affairs,  that is the greatest lure to go offshore.
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Here is the Appleby Global document on the creation of the Shawkat’s Passion Group Trust. Hover over the document with your mouse to invoke the control panel at the bottom of the PDF:

Shawkat-2011-Passion-Group-Summary