Fonte: Herald Sun
Senator Xenophon yesterday accused the Church of Scientology of being a criminal organisation.
The South Australian parliamentarian said he had been contacted by a number of former Scientologists, after he questioned the organisation’s tax exempt status in a recent television interview.
“They have provided long and detailed letters to me about the workings of this organisation,” he told the Senate.
“These people rightly see themselves as victims of Scientology.”
Senator Xenophon said their correspondence implicated the organisation in a range of crimes, including forced imprisonment, coerced abortions, embezzlement of church funds, physical violence, intimidation and blackmail.
“I am deeply concerned about this organisation and the devastating impact it can have on its followers,” he said.
Asked about the senator’s claims, Prime Minister Mr. Kevin Rudd described them as “grave allegations”.
“Many people in Australia have real concerns about Scientology,” Mr Rudd said.
“I share some of those concerns. Let us proceed carefully and look carefully at the material he has provided before we make a decision on further parliamentary action.”
Asked about the Church of Scientology’s tax exempt status, Mr Rudd said he was advised the High Court had dealt with the matter back in the 1980s.
“I am so advised, but I stand to be corrected,” he said.
“Therefore the true question is the actual nature of the operations that involve Scientology now.
“I don’t want to rush into any judgment on this, other than to say he’s (Senator Xenophon) raised concerns and made some serious allegations.”
Senator Xenophon said the Church of Scientology had been convicted of fraud in France and was facing similar charges in Belgium.
A number of the organisation’s former high-ranking executives in the US had also recently spoken out against its leader, David Miscavige, saying they had seen him assaulting staff and urging others to do the same, he said.
“What we are seeing is a worldwide pattern of abuse and criminality,” Senator Xenophon said.
“On the body of evidence, this is not happening by accident, it is happening by design.
“Scientology is not a religious organisation, it is a criminal organisation that hides behind its so-called religious beliefs.”
The Church of Scientology issued a statement to the media responding to Senator Xenophon’s comments.
“This is an outrageous abuse of Parliamentary privilege from a Senator would not even meet with Church representatives several months ago to discuss his concerns,” the statement read.
“Senator Xenophon’s attempt to marginalise Scientologists by saying that they should not be believed, is fascistic and violates freedom of speech and the right to religious beliefs.”
“Scientology has fought for and upheld religious freedom around the world and is accepted as a religion throughout the world. In a few countries, the Church has been forced to litigate the issue of its religiosity, either affirmatively or in response to outrageous unfounded charges.
“Inevitably, the Church has prevailed in these cases and its religious bona fides have been unequivocally recognised.”
Veja reportagens e vídeos sobre a seita da Scientology e sua armadilha Dianética (Dianetics) clicando aqui.