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September 8, 2008

Church of Scientology accused of fraud in France

Filed under: Crime and law,France,Religion,Review — admin @ 5:00 am

Monday, September 8, 2008

According to a report by the AFP, the Church of Scientology in France will be facing a court trial, being accused of “organized” fraud. The AFP also states that seven other Scientologists will be charged with illegally prescribing prescription medication. If found guilty, Scientology could be banned in France.

According to the report, the charges come from an unnamed woman, who in 1998 purchased nearly 30,000 United States dollars worth of Scientology self-help material which allegedly included prescription drugs. After a few months passed, the woman said she felt like she was being scammed. Following several complaints from other unnamed individuals and an investigation, judge Jean-Christophe Hullin ordered at least two Scientology departments and the seven Scientologists to be put on trial for fraud and “illegally practicing as pharmacists.”

The Church released a statement following the order saying that they felt “stigmatized” by the French Judiciary system.

“The special treatment reserved for the Church of Scientology Celebrity Center raises questions about the equality of the justice system and the presumption of innocence

The AFP says the case is to be heard at an unknown date, and will also include an investigation by France’s association for prescription drugs. Olivier Morice, a lawyer representing the unnamed woman and others in the case against the Church, say the trial could begin as early as 2009.


Sources

  • “Scientology ‘faces French trial'”. BBC News Online, September 8, 2008
  • Thierry Leveque “Scientologists charged with fraud in France: source”. Washington Post, September 8, 2008
  • “Church of Scientology to be tried in France for fraud: legal source”. AFP, September 8, 2008
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