Scientology Purported To Have Committed Criminal Acts
According to the BBC, Australian Prime Minister, Kevin Rudd, has said he will consider calls for a parliamentary inquiry into the Church of Scientology.
This followed Australian Senator Nick Xenophon’s scathing attack on Scientology which cited letters from former followers alleging extensive criminal activity. “The letters received by me which were written by former followers in Australia, contain extensive allegations of crimes and abuses which are truly shocking,” he said.
The BBC stated that Senator Xenophon said their correspondence implicated the organization in a range of crimes, including forced imprisonment, coerced abortions, physical violence and blackmail.
“These victims of Scientology claim it is an abusive, manipulative, violent and criminal organization,” said Senator Xenophon.
“Scientology is not a religious organization, it’s a criminal organization that hides behind its so-called religious beliefs,” he said.
Prime Minister Rudd said he would consider Senator Xenophon’s call for a parliamentary inquiry, noting he had made “grave allegations”.
“Many people in Australia have real concerns about Scientology,” he told reporters.
Given status as a religion in many countries, Scientology enjoys tax-free privileges, however revelations from former followers have sparked huge legal battles in Europe where in several countries it is deemed a sect, not a religion. A French court recently convicted the Church of Scientology of fraud.
In the U.S. several Hollywood celebrities are affiliated with Scientology which include John Travolta, Kirstie Alley, Tom Cruise, and others.