Russia: Police raid Saint Petersburg org, Sept. 25, 2014

Discussion in 'Media' started by mnql1, Sep 27, 2014.

  1. mnql1 Member

    At 10:30 a.m. on Thursday, September 25, 2014, police raided the Church of Scientology located at 21 Rozenstein Street in Saint Peterburg, Russia. Authorities are investigating a "large-scale fraud" by the construction company "Olimp" whose directors are Scientologists Ekaterina and Mikhail Zaborskikh. Money that buyers paid to purchase apartments in buildings yet to be constructed was allegedly siphoned off to pay for Scientology courses or as donations to Scientology's "volunteer ministers." According to present estimates, 9 million rubles were stolen from defrauded investors.

    A video posted on Russia's NTV website on September 27 shows some scenes from the raid. The speaker heard in the video is Vyacheslav Stepchenko, an official of the Ministry of Internal Affairs. He states that the raid took place and summarizes the fraud allegations.

    Sources (in Russian):
    NTV video Sept. 27, 2014
    NTV video Sept. 25,2014
    Article, Sept. 25, 2014: Police raid Scientology business
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  2. inb4Godwin'sLaw

    Russians are such religious bigots, fraud is the mother's milk of L. Ron Hubbard's 'science' / 'religion'.
    It's time to release SP Heber Jentzch and dozens of other former wayward Scientology 'executives' from David Miscavige's private internment facility in Hemet, Ca to lead a parade in St. Petersbug.

  3. BigBeard Member

    I believe we've had stories about $cilons right here in the USofA siphoning money out of a business for $cientology in the past. So I have to admit I'm not really surprised to hear it's being investigated in Russia. I am a bit surprised the investigation went as far as raiding the $cilon's org though. I wonder where the money trails would lead of some US orgs got raided??

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  4. RolandRB Member

    Why, when Matt Fesbach declared bankruptcy, didn't the IRS ask the Co$ for their money back since it is obvious it was the Co$ who siphoned the money off and bankrupted him?
  5. Ogsonofgroo Member

    Scientologists ripping off money? Who'd of thunk it! (lol, 9million rubles, peanuts really (just over 200k US), what kind of housing would that buy?)

    Hey DM, I hear ol' Rex Fowler is keeping a bed warm for ya!

    Keeping Scamology Working uh-huh uh-huh
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  6. peterstorm Member

    Da! Spasiva Russia!
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  7. TrevAnon Member

    That would be 1 ruble per Scientologist.

    Oh, wait... :)
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  8. Scientology with Nancy's assistance siphoned money off this guy until he went bankrupt and jumped off the bridge:
  9. mnql1 Member

    Incidentally, the raid of the Church of Scientology in Saint Petersburg took place exactly one week before the European Court of Human Rights is scheduled to hand down a decision on Thursday, October 2, 2014 regarding Russia's refusal to register the Saint Petersburg org.

    Source: Forthcoming judgments re: BG, CZ, FR, GR, MD, NO, PT, RU & UA 30.09-02.10.14
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  10. DeathHamster Member

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  11. Choosing to raid on Thursday morning was correct!

    Raiding and finding evidence to prosecute and successfully prosecuting correctly based on the evidence warranting that raid, which all leads to justice, fine.

    Raiding and not finding evidence to justify the raid, wrong.

    Raiding on Thursday morning, Scientology organizations, correct though!
  12. DeathHamster Member

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  13. The Wrong Guy Member

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  14. vaLLarrr Member

    They should demolish it, not raid it.
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  15. Anonymous [IMG] of Scientologist fuckwits!
  16. mnql1 Member

    Posted on Monday, September 29, 2014 by Interfax:
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  17. RolandRB Member

    Can people convicted of fraud be shot in the USSR or is it just going to be a boring old salt mine for the next 20 years?
  18. BigBeard Member

    What, no "Red Box" tech in place? My, how things have gone downhill since LRH went to Hell. Or was that Venus?

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  19. The Wrong Guy Member

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  20. DeathHamster Member
    But is the CEO no longer angry?
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  21. mnql1 Member

    The European Court of Human Rights October 2, 2014 decision orders Russia to pay the applicants 7,500 euros for violating Article 9 (Freedom of thought, conscience and religion) of the Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms.
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  22. RightOn Member

  23. The Wrong Guy Member

    Scientology St. Petersburg vs Russia decision

    By Tony Ortega

    Jonny Jacobsen recently suggested to us that a questionable raid by Russian authorities of the Scientology org in St. Petersburg might be a sign that the country knew it was about to lose a decision in the European Court of Human Rights.

    This morning, Jonny let us know that the ECHR did, in fact, rule that the St. Petersburg Scientologists who made the complaint were denied their rights when the country refused to recognize the legal status of the church there. The ECHR found that Russia had violated Article 9 (Freedom of thought, conscience, and religion) of the Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms. The ECHR awarded the Scientologists 7,500 euros in damages (they had asked for 20,000).

    Jonny is going to write up a full report about the decision…And here it is!

    Continued here:
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  24. Albion Member

    There's a brief write-up by Arnaud Palisson at his site, arguing basically that if Russia wants to deal with Scientology effectively, it at least needs to respect its own laws. Here's the link. You can get an English translation by clicking in the left-hand column.

    Also, contrary to my initial version of the story, there are in fact not one, but two previous rulings against Russia on this issue of the 15-year rule. This restriction came in the 1997 Religion Act, three years after Scientology had already been recognised as a religion in Russia. The movement refused to reapply under the new laws and so was stripped of its religious status.

    As the European Court of Human Rights has pointed out, Russia's own Constitutional Court has ruled that this new law should not have been applied retroactively to Scientology -- and in any case, as the previous Strasbourg rulings have already made clear, the 15-year rule is itself unfair, discriminating as it does against new religious movements.

    Have sent a brief update to Tony, which I hope he'll post later today.
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  25. Quentinanon Member

    The cult is known for mysterious fires in buildings containing files.
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  26. DeathHamster Member
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  27. The Wrong Guy Member

    More from Jonny Jacobsen on the St. Petersburg decision

    By Tony Ortega

    Yesterday our man in Paris, Jonny Jacobsen, gave us a rundown on the decision by the European Court of Human Rights to award 7,500 euros to several Scientologists in St. Petersburg, Russia because of the bureacratic runaround that the country gave them when they applied for the church there to have official status. Jonny sent over this update this morning.

    Continued here:
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  28. mnql1 Member

    Translation of a Russian article posted on Monday, October 6, 2014 on the website of the news agency:
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  29. DeathHamster Member

    ^^ They seem confused. Were they looking for evidence of involvement financial fraud (good), or "extremist literature" (Russian Honey Badger tactics)?
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  30. Crimes, DH. They were looking for evidence of crimes.

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  31. DeathHamster Member

    But what was on the search warrant? Normally a search warrant is specific as to what they're supposed to be looking for. In this case, they seemed to have used it as an excuse for a fishing expedition. Outside Russia, police tend to avoid that because it can taint the evidence that they actually wanted.
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  32. I get what you're concerned about, DH - but I doubt the safeguards exist in the regime we're discussing.

    But I suppose, if you were looking for, say, illegal drugs, and you turned up illegal weapons, the police might well be successful in charging you with something not mentioned in the original warrant, even outside Russia.
  33. DeathHamster Member

    In Russia, they simply declared that Scientology's materials were extremist literature, after trying outright Scientology-banning, bureaucratic roadblocks and book-banning. So they found Scientology materials in a Scientology Org, what a surprise!

    Is this a state security matter by whoever answers the KGB's old phone number, or is this a real criminal fraud investigation that can be handled by the police and courts, and if it results in convictions that include closing the St. Petersburg Org, the European Court of Human Rights probably won't complain.
  34. rof Member

    Stay on target.

    Quit hamster-raping hongkongers.
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  35. Albion Member

    In the meantime, in case there were any doubts -- and I've seen some mutterings in some quarters -- here's the latest post at Infinite Complacency, arguing that critics should accept that European Court of Human Rights was right to rule against Russia -- and for Scientology -- in three separate judgments.

    Russia had it coming: critics of Scientology should accept the 3 ECHR rulings that went in its favour.
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  36. DeathHamster Member

    It's no surprise that the ECHR rules against Russia: Russia keeps using high-handed old school methods to restrict Scientology instead of doing it properly with a real criminal case that can be fought and won in court.

    The way that the ECHR bounced Scientology's case against France shows that when a country does it right, the ECHR doesn't have a problem with it.
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  37. Albion Member

    I think you just summed up my whole article: I should hire you as my publicist!
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  38. Albion Member

    What I forgot to do was mention Arnaud Palisson's comments along the same lines (cited earlier in this thread: scroll up). But that will have to be for next time.
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