US Charges Scientology Officials With Infiltration-Theft Scheme
[reprint from Lakeland Ledger image]May.20.1979 (LONDON) ~ The United States, attempting to extradite two Church of Scientology leaders from Great Britain, charges them with ordering US sect members to infiltrate government departments in Washington DC and steal documents, an attorney says.
Attorney David Tudor Price, representing the United States at extradition hearings here, alleged the two sect leaders - 30 year old Tampa native Morrison Budlong and British citizen Mrs. Jane Kember, born in Nairobi, Kenya - set in motion a plan that led to burglaries of the Washington DC offices of the Internal Revenue Service And the Justice Department.
Charges against them include aiding and abetting the theft of US government property, obstruction of justice, making a false declaration before a grand jury and aiding and abetting burglary.
|IRS Building Washington DC|
Tudor Price said in court last week that the actions against the IRS and Justice Department were ordered after sect members claimed to have discovered Interpol documents about L.Ron Hubbard, who founded the organization in the United States in 1954. Interpol is the Paris-based international police organization.
Aides to Hubbard, who moved his world headquarters to suburban London in the late 1960s, say the cult is the largest mental health organization and describe its goals as the establishment of "better conditions for man and society and to create a civilization without war, criminalization and insanity."
The group claims to have more than 5 million members worldwide, including 3.5 million in the United States and more than 300,000 in Britain.
Tudor Price claims Mrs. Kember was known as "Guardian Worldwide" and controlled an operations center in East Grinstead in southern England.
Tudor Price said Mrs. Kember sent a letter in November, 1973, to "the deputy guardian in the United States telling that her (Mrs. Kember's) office had obtained Interpol documents concerning the affairs of Ron Hubbard," instructing the deputy to get hold of other documents and left it "to him how to do so."