Three attorneys file class-action lawsuit against Narconon in California

Discussion in 'Narconon' started by The Wrong Guy, Apr 1, 2015.

  1. The Wrong Guy Member


    By Tony Ortega, The Underground Bunker

    Catapulting from the success of Las Vegas attorney Ryan Hamilton, who spent the past year filing 27 lawsuits against Scientology’s drug rehab network Narconon, three attorneys who have watched Hamilton closely have filed a new class-action lawsuit against two Narconon corporations in California with two initial plaintiffs.

    Indiana attorney David Miller, California attorney Michael Ram, and Seattle attorney Beth Terrell filed their suit in federal court in Northern California, and have asked for both national and regional classes to be certified as their clients sue for breach of contract, negligent representation, false advertising, and unfair competition.

    In other words, they’re hoping to add potentially many more plaintiffs around the United States who believe they have been harmed by what the suit characterizes as Narconon’s deceptive business practices.

    If you’ve observed Hamilton’s lawsuits evolve since we began watching them, you may have some sense of the way he found evidence to show that Narconon centers claim to be secular and offer individualized drug training. But when patients pay the approximately $30,000 to enter the program, they soon find that the Narconon program contains no drug counseling at all, but instead is the same Scientology training that beginning church members go through.

    You’ll see the same evidence that Hamilton unearthed referred to in this new lawsuit, and it’s laser focused on that essential bait and switch. (Other lawsuits have made allegations about rampant drug use by Narconon staffs, and allegations of drugs traded for sex, and also harm caused by the program’s focus on lengthy sauna use. But here, the suit is about the essential deception about what Narconon offers.)

    Plaintiff Nathan Burgoon is from California, and he spent time last fall at a Narconon in Watsonville, Narconon Redwood Cliffs (pictured), which is owned by Narconon Northern California (NNC). According to the complaint:

    Mr. Burgoon opted to terminate his “treatment” after complying with NNC’s direction that he spend six to eight hours a day for twenty straight days in a hot sauna, in accordance with the Narconon Program. NNC did not, and has not, refunded Mr. Burgoon any of the $37,500 he paid. Had Mr. Burgoon been informed that “treatment” at NNC consisted of the study of Scientology and participation in Scientology rituals, he would not have enrolled in a Narconon Program.

    The other plaintiff, Caleb Landers, is from Pennsylvania, and he went to a Narconon center in Warner Springs, in San Diego County, which is owned by Narconon Fresh Start (NFS). After his parents had paid an initial $10,000 for him to start the program.

    It became apparent to Mr. Landers that NFS had strong ties to Scientology and the Narconon Program was a tool to promote its teachings. Mr. Landers observed that all of the text books used by NFS were written by L. Ron Hubbard. Furthermore, Mr. Landers was regularly forced to perform Scientology rituals that were often mischaracterized as drills, exercises and/or counselling sessions. Mr. Landers advised his parents of his experiences at NFS and with their consent decided to leave the NFS Warner Springs Facility. Mr. Landers’ parents also placed a stop payment request on a personal check written to NFS for $21,000.00.

    We spoke with David Miller, and he says that there has been a lull in new lawsuits recently as attorneys around the country were waiting to see what would happen with Hamilton’s request to consolidate Narconon lawsuits so that they would be heard out of a single courtroom. But the US Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation denied that request, and so now attorneys suing Narconon are ramping back up. Miller says this new lawsuit is just the first of several more that are coming.

    Continued here:
    • Like Like x 8
  2. RightOn Member

    Although I know a class action would lighten up the work load,
    Someone told me that if people file individual cases it would cost the cult a lot more money...
    well, I mean it will cost their "parishioners" a lot more money
  3. Random guy Member

    Don't forget Hamilton has 26 individual cases still running in the system.
    • Like Like x 2
  4. Ann O'Nymous Member

  5. The Wrong Guy Member

    Lawsuit blasts drug treatment at Narconon in South Santa Cruz County

    By Stephen Baxter, Santa Cruz Sentinel, May 5, 2015

    A new lawsuit filed against Narconon of Northern California alleges that its drug treatment center near Mount Madonna gave participants a path to joining the Church of Scientology rather than a way out of drug and alcohol abuse.

    The class action suit, filed in federal district court in San Francisco, alleges breach of contract, negligent misrepresentation, false advertising and unlawful business practices.

    Nathan Burgoon, a California resident, attended the program at Narconon at 262 Gaffey Road near Hecker Pass Road in November 2014. He paid $37,500 for drug rehabilitation, and spent 20 days learning about Scientology and six to eight hours of each day in a hot sauna with limited drinking water, according to the lawsuit. He eventually quit the program and asked for his money back.

    “Had Mr. Burgoon been informed that the ‘treatment’ at Narconon of Northern California consisted of the study of Scientology and participation in Scientology rituals, he would not have enrolled in a Narconon program,” wrote his attorney, Michael Ram of the San Francisco-based law firm Ram, Olson, Cereghino and Kopczynski LLP.

    Continued here, with open comments:

    PDF file contributed by Stephen Baxter, Santa Cruz Sentinel:
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  6. anon8109 Member

    Nice headline.

    The lawsuit claims that Narconon is not secular but is identical to Scientology induction, and so that it's false advertising.

    If the plaintiff takes this to court and wins, it could open the floodgates allowing pretty much anyone who was duped by Scientology's Narconon to get all of their money back. Thus I doubt this will ever go to trial since the company can't take the risk that it might lose.
    • Like Like x 1
  7. Anonymous Member

    I had a good laugh at these statements by the NN lawyer:
    Assuming Mr. Howell is referring to the other victims of the scam, and assuming that they were heavily addicted to something or other, they would hardly have been in any condition to sign legal contracts about anything.
    • Like Like x 2
  8. I don't know if Narconon is secular or not. What I do know is 10 years ago my 19 year-old brother got mixed up in meth and it was bad. He was pulling knives on siblings, not talking coherently, etc. etc. We heard about the program, paid about 25,000. (Thank heavens we had the money back then...) and flew him back east to the program. Whatever they did worked for him. When he came back he promptly changed his friends and moved to another city. He has not since and will not now touch any drug or narcotic. He is to this day very picky about what he puts in his body health-wise. So, I must say I am grateful this program existed for my brother. It was a success for him.
  9. Anonymous Member

    cool story bro@0.gif
    • Like Like x 7
  10. anon8109 Member

    Guest, are you arguing that since your brother got some benefit from Narconon we should ignore all of the evidence that it is a harmful scam and a fraud?

    What if instead of recuperating your brother had been one of the victims who died because Scientology's Narconon took away their prescription medicine?
    • Like Like x 5
  11. Random guy Member

    Ah, the infamous "what's true for you is true"-tech! Sorry, won't fly here. Narconon is scientology indoctrination masquerading as a rehab, and it's dangerous to your health too as a number of deaths have shown. Simply put, your brother would probably have been better off at any other rehab.
    • Like Like x 6
  12. JohnnyRUClear Member

    "Running blindfolded across the street worked for me! I felt a renewed sense of courage and zest for life! Thank goodness Blindfoldology was there when I needed it."
    • Like Like x 7
  13. I am a victim of NarConon Lonestar Victory Ranch. Where do I start?
  14. Disambiguation Global Moderator

    • Like Like x 1
  15. Disambiguation Global Moderator

  16. Thank you kindly.
  17. Disambiguation Global Moderator

  18. JohnnyRUClear Member

    Tony Ortega, too, is a good person to contact. Doubtless he is in ongoing touch with the various lolyers working to bring redress to Narconon's victims and would be happy to make connections.
    • Like Like x 1
  19. Very gratefully appreciated. The saga begins.
  20. Random guy Member

    Get 'en, tiger!
  21. RightOn Member

    Taking action is exactly what every victim should do. It will help to lift the veil of secrecy on these scumbags, help people to see that Narconon = Scientology, and that it is nothing more than a scam, quack science program that doesn't help anyone. Just the opposite.
    You will be helping to save lives and patient's well being.
    • Like Like x 3
  22. DeathHamster Member

    To start with, the actual name of the company is Narconon South Texas Inc. (Every Narconon location has a few names that they shift as the old one gets poisonous.)

    Category:Narconon South Texas

    Lawyer Ryan Hamilton's website:
    • Like Like x 3
  23. BigBeard Member

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  24. Thanks for posting this Fantastic Site:
    (I'm with the Department of Redundancy Department.)

    Scientology / Narconon's absurd response to anyone claiming that their 76% 'Success' rate is not being met:
    ''It's not 76% of those fully paid addicts seeking treatment, it's over 70% of the participants that we consider to be 'Graduates' who have completed the Narconon program to our satisfaction.''
    This includes a mandatory Success Story before you will be considered a Narconon Graduate.

    This absurd stipulation is not mentioned in any of their promotions advertising a ridiculous 76% Success rate that attracts so many desperate addicts and their families who come with $30,000.00 any way they possibly can to save their loved ones. Narconon monies are forwarded uplines in Scientology for this program that is considered a Bridge to Scientology's Bridge to total freedom.

    The ultimate goal of Narconon is the indoctrination of future Scientologists. It's a medically dangerous program full of lies and misrepresentations that has generated untold millions for the 'Church' of Scientology while leaving countless victims destroyed by this unsuccessful program.


    Google: L. Ron Hubbard's Narconon Scam
    • Like Like x 2
  25. Disambiguation Global Moderator

    If you register here people can talk to you directly via private message.
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  26. My sister paid $39,000.00 for my son to go there. I begged her not to because common sense said its Scientology. I knew exactly what would happen. It was Scientology indoctrination and nothing more. My son said everyone was having sex with everyone else. My son relapsed the day he got out. My sister hasn't spoken to us in 6 years because she was duped by Narconon, which preys on people and she fell for it without researching any other rehabs. So we're the ones at fault because she's gullible. It doesn't take a rocket scientist to figure out its just a money-making joke. Why anyone would ever choose this is beyond me. They almost deserve to lose their money (almost) for being so stupid.
  27. RightOn Member

    Don't confuse stupidity with desperation. People are desperate for a cure and that is exactly what Narconon preys on. Vulnerable and desperate people.
    • Like Like x 6
  28. RightOn Member

    I had to reread your post.
    I don't quite understand it. You said that your SISTER paid for YOUR son to go? And you begged her not to?
    So didn't you have the final say on whether your son went to Narconon or not?

    You say,
    "Why anyone would ever choose this is beyond me. They almost deserve to lose their money (almost) for being so stupid."
    You think she hasn't talked to you for six years because of Narconon?
    Is the reason she hasn't talked to you because out of the goodness of her heart she was trying to help your son? She paid $39,000 and you say that people (almost) deserve to lose their money because they are so stupid? Meaning your sister included? Correct?

    $39,000 isn't some small chunk of change. It is a crazy amount of money. Well to me anyways.
    Maybe the reason she isn't talking to you is obvious?
    Did you "I told you so" to death after your son got out and relapsed and blame her?
    Sounds like she generously tried to help your family?

    Am I not seeing this right?
    And you really need to go to authorities with your story. And your sister needs to get her money back.
    And if I am correct, you need to apologize to her, thank her for being there, thank her for her concern and her outrageous generosity even it turned out to be misguided and was for warned by you.

    If I am incorrect, then please fill me in as to what I am not understanding or getting wrong here.
    • Like Like x 2
  29. The Wrong Guy Member

    WOW: California judge orders trial to determine if Scientology drugged incoming rehab patients

    By Tony Ortega, The Underground Bunker, August 28, 2015

    On April 1, we told you about a class-action lawsuit that had been filed against several of Scientology’s drug rehab companies in California. A judge has now ruled against Scientology in the lawsuit’s preliminary matters and has called for a trial that should put explosive evidence in a courtroom — that Scientology’s Narconon centers get new patients high on whatever they’re addicted to before they can be admitted.

    Two plaintiffs were named in the lawsuit; their attorneys planned for there to be many more former Narconon patients suing the Scientology rehab system. The plaintiffs, Nathan Burgoon of California and Caleb Landers of Pennsylvania, each alleged what we’ve seen in so many other lawsuits against the Scientology rehab centers: That they promise individualized drug counseling delivered by medical professionals with astounding success rates, and don’t mention their connection to the Church of Scientology. But after patients have paid around $30,000 up front, they then learn that the Narconon program contains no drug counseling at all, but instead delivers the same kind of introductory exercises that a new member gets at a Scientology church.

    That bait and switch is the essential allegation in this lawsuit. The Narconon companies being sued filed motions to compel, asking that the former patients abide by contracts they had signed and go to arbitration rather than proceed with the lawsuit. (A similar strategy by Scientology worked to derail the fraud lawsuit of Luis and Rocio Garcia recently.)

    But Burgoon and Landers argue that they shouldn’t be held to those contracts because when they signed them, they were high as kites — and their condition had been encouraged by the Narconon centers where they were taken. The Narconon companies deny that, but federal district Judge Edward M. Chen in San Francisco decided that this disagreement was a question of fact that could be decided in a trial. So he’s put off the motions to compel arbitration, and he’s called for a courtroom showdown.

    It’s a pretty stunning development. A trial will allow Burgoon and Landers to call other former patients as witnesses who can testify that they were driven to their dealers by Narconon staffers to get high before they were admitted, an allegation we’ve seen numerous times in other lawsuits.

    Continued here:
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  30. Quentinanon Member

    So, it looks like the scientology crime syndicate arm, NarCONon, wants their prospects desperate and in a suggestible state of mind. Then while in that state of mind, sign away their rights of remedy in a court of law. On the face of it, sounds like an invalid contract to me on the basis of fraud in the inducement, material misrepresentation, and contracting with a person in a disabled state of mind. Ironic that in the organization itself, no arbitration exists but they want that over open court because they don't want their crimes and shady dealings made public.
    • Like Like x 3
  31. anon8109 Member

    when a patient would come in while suffering withdrawal, the patient would first have to be sent to a hospital to dry out before starting the Narconon program. Seeing this as a wasted business opportunity, many of the Narconon facilities have opened up their own separate medical detox facilities [ they] can charge the medical insurance of the patient.
    Former Narconon officials have told us that incoming patients are taken to get high so they can qualify for the medical detox and the insurance payments
    • Like Like x 4
  32. anon8109 Member

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  33. Ersatz Global Moderator

    How did I miss that they take their clients to their dealers to get high before they are admitted?
    No wonder there are so many drugs in Narconon, they know where to get the best stuff.
    • Like Like x 1
  34. RightOn Member

    join = profit?
    • Like Like x 2
  35. Quentinanon Member

    And Hubbard was no stranger to getting high on illicit drugs.
    I wonder if the New York osabots knew the drug dealer of the heroin Philip Seymour Hoffman died from.
  36. Ersatz Global Moderator

  37. The Wrong Guy Member

    Another trial ordered against Narconon as Scientology derail attempt mostly fails

    By Tony Ortega, The Underground Bunker, September 10, 2015

    On August 28, we told you that Indianapolis attorney Jonathan Little and his firm had scored an interesting victory against Scientology’s drug rehab network, Narconon. San Francisco federal district judge Edward M. Chen called for a trial in a class-action lawsuit that Little and others had filed on behalf of former patients of Narconon centers in California.

    Chen ordered the trial in a preliminary matter in the class-action suit, and we remarked on how unusual it is that any lawsuit filed against the Church of Scientology or one of its front groups gets to any kind of trial. In fact, we couldn’t think of a jury trial taking place since the major lawsuits of the 1980s in Oregon and California. (We’re not counting the criminal trials against Rex Fowler and Reed Slatkin, which were only tangentially about Scientology.) So the prospect of a jury hearing serious allegations against Narconon in the California class-action — that patients were taken by rehab employees to their dealers to get high before being admitted — seemed like a pretty significant development to us, even if it may be a year or more before the trial actually happens.

    And now, Little’s firm has done it again. State circuit judge Sarah S. Lincoln in Battle Creek, Michigan (pictured) has ordered trial in a lawsuit filed by a woman named Candice Tyler. In her finding, Judge Lincoln knocked down, in part, a motion to dismiss filed by the defendants. The Scientology rehab — Narconon Freedom Center in Albion, Michigan — and its Scientology-run umbrella group — Narconon Eastern United States (NEUS) — have been ordered to stand trial. But it’s not all bad news for Scientology. Two other defendants — Narconon International (NI) and the Association for Better Living and Education (ABLE) — were each dismissed as defendants.

    Again, Little tells us it may be quite a while before a jury is seated. Maybe not even until 2017. But still, it’s interesting to see Judge Lincoln’s reasons for why she thinks Narconon Freedom Center and NEUS should stand trial and NI and ABLE should not. We’ll be interested to see comments from our legal friends after they get a chance to look through the judge’s findings.

    The Tyler lawsuit is one of the most troubling cases we’ve seen of the dozens that have been filed against Narconon in the last couple of years. Not only were there the usual allegations that Narconon had hidden its connection to Scientology from Tyler, and also that it promised drug counseling but instead delivered Scientology training, but that she was harmed by Narconon’s sauna-and-niacin regimen, which had her coughing up blood.

    At this point, Judge Lincoln thinks it’s for a jury to decide if Tyler’s allegations will hold up. We don’t know if a trial will happen (these things tend to settle), but it has to be a troubling sign for Scientology that so few of its motions to dismiss have been successful against the dozens of lawsuits it faces around the country.

    In the meantime, the first chance that we’re likely to see an actual trial happen is the one scheduled for December 7 in Laura DeCrescenzo’s forced-abortion lawsuit. We told you previously that although Laura’s suit survived a major summary judgment fight in 2013, Scientology filed yet another motion recently, this time about its religious rights, which may yet derail the trial. We’ll keep you up to date on that.

    Here’s the finding of Judge Lincoln:

    Continued here:
    • Like Like x 2
  38. RightOn Member

    not to derail, but what on earth is going on with Monique Rathbun's case?
  39. Lawyer Needed Member

    If Attorney Ryan Hamilton's office might be to busy we are in need of Attorney asap. Any other attorneys experienced in representing clients against Narconon in California need one immediately.

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