'The Complex' author John Duignan cites Tom Cruise control
NY Daily News www.nydailynews.com
Rush & Molloy
December 1st, 2008
Tom Cruise is denying that he pressured Amazon to stop selling a book critical of the Church of Scientology.
On Oct. 31, Irish publisher Merlin released “The Complex,” in which John Duignan, identified as “a former high-ranking member” of the church in Britain, describes his “dramatic escape” from its “elite para-military group,” the Sea Organization. Five days later, Cruise dropped by Amazon’s Seattle headquarters to glad-hand staffers and host a sneak peek at his new movie, “Valkyrie.”
A few days later, Amazon’s British Web site stopped selling “The Complex,” explaining to customers that someone mentioned in the book had alleged it defamed him with “false claims.”
“U.K. law gives us no choice but to remove the title from our catalogue,” Amazon said in a statement.
“I believe Tom Cruise influenced them,” Duignan tells us.
Cruise’s rep denies that charge.
So does Amazon spokeswoman Patty Smith, who insists it was simply Britain’s tough libel laws that forced Amazon.co.uk to yank “The Complex.” The book, available on Amazon.com as of last Tuesday, is now “temporarily out of stock,” according to the American Web site.
Lawyers for the complaining member, a noncelebrity, want to keep it that way: They’ve demanded the “destruction” of the books.
Smith says: “We definitely want to offer it to our Amazon.com customers. We just don’t have the inventory.”
Duignan, a Scientologist for 22 years, alleges in his book that members were subjected to sleep deprivation and “brain-washing” and that punishments were “meted out to anyone who transgresses, including children.” When he left, Scientology’s Office of Special Affairs “had people posted outside my parents’ house in Ireland,” he tells us.
Duignan, 45, says he began to question the church’s priorities at a 2004 gala in England where Cruise was honored. “I’d been trying to change the image of the church by volunteering in disadvantaged communities,” he tells us. But the “party was of such unbelievable opulence, I began to see the church was all about money.
“I directly know 20 members who went insane or committed suicide,” Duignan says. “I personally went through a period of insanity. I’m hoping this book can be a lifeline to my former comrades.”
Scientology spokeswoman Karin Pouw argues that Duignan’s book is filled with “false accusations,” that he was only a “mid-level administrator,” that there was no “cloak and dagger machination” to stop him from leaving and that “no one has ever committed suicide at the facility where Mr. Duignan worked in the U.K.”
Disclaimer:This news page is about groups, organizations or movements, which may have been called "cults" and/or "cult-like" in some way, shape or form. But not all groups called either "cults" or "cult-like" are harmful. Instead, they may be benign and generally defined as simply people intensely devoted to a person, place or thing. Therefore, the discussion or mention of a group, organization or person on this page, is not necessarily meant pejoratively. Readers are encouraged to read widely on a topic before forming an opinion. Never accept information from a single source at face value. This website only holds a small amount of information and should not be relied on as a complete source. For example, if you find older information, this should be weighed up against newer information as circumstances can change.