Friday, October 21, 2005

Sexual Assault and the "Church"

From the New York Post:

October 2, 2005 -- A FORMER Scientology staffer is breaking her silence about being sexually assaulted 100 times at ages 16 and 17 by the church supervisor she was "ordered" to live with, and then receiving threats and intimidating phone calls when she reported the abuse.
Five years ago, Gabriel Williams, then a 27-year-old chief supervisor at the Church of Scientology in Mountain View, Calif., forced then-16-year-old Jennifer Stewart to have intercourse with him on the first evening she moved in, according to her statements in court records.

After Williams was charged with rape and sodomy with a minor — and later convicted of sexual battery and sodomy — Stewart's family endured death threats, stalkers and other harassment.

"We want the world to know that when Tom Cruise calls psychiatry a 'pseudoscience,' it's all part of Scientology's plan to brainwash people," said Stewart's husband, Tom Gorman, referring to the actor's "Today" show interview in June.

Stewart believed that if she went to the police, she would not be able to avoid being sent to a psychiatrist. According to Scientology, psychiatry is a source of evil. Members who see "psychs" or take psychiatric drugs will be declared "SP" — "suppressive person" — and can't achieve spiritual freedom.

In a related civil suit brought by Stewart against Williams and the church, she recently received as part of the settlement a "generous monetary resolution," said her attorney. Although the church admitted no wrongdoing, it forked over about $700,000, sources say.


The full article can be read here (free registration required).

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