'Inquiry' into abuse claims at Church of Scientology
Will Pavia From: Times Online
February 08, 2011
The Church of Scientology and its leader David Miscavige are allegedly subject to an FBI investigation.
THE FBI is investigating the Church of Scientology following allegations from former members that they were incarcerated in "punitive re-education camps" and subjected to mental and physical abuse, a US magazine has claimed.
The publication also reported that federal agents were investigating David Miscavige, its leader.
The New Yorker reported claims from former members that Mr Miscavige lived a luxury lifestyle, flying chartered jets and having two chefs, five stewards, a fleet of cars and six motorcycles.
Lavish compensation would be illegal for the leader of a tax-exempt body, and the article quoted a spokesman for the organisation denying the allegations and describing the gifts as "tokens of love and respect for Mr Miscavige". A spokesman for the FBI said that it could not "confirm or deny the existence of investigations".
The Church said that the article was "little more than a regurgitation of old allegations that have long been disproved.
"The Church has never been advised of any government investigation, a fact The New Yorker knew before it went to print. Moreover, the subject of the alleged investigation was recently raised in a lawsuit by the same individuals who are the sources for the article and the complaint was resoundingly dismissed by a Federal District Court Judge." The Church said that it was "unfortunate" that the magazine had sought to "introduce its readers to Scientology through the eyes of an apostate".
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