From: "Hannoversche Allgemeine"
February 6, 1999
According to press reports, major proceedings will, for the first time, be brought against the controversial Scientology organization. The "El Pais" newspaper reported, on Saturday, that starting June 1, proceedings against 18 leading members and adherents of the organization will be initiated before a court in Madrid. Included among those members is Heber Jentzsch, the Scientology President from the USA, for whom the state attorney's office is asking 30 years in prison.
In the indictment, Scientology is described as an "extremely dangerous organization" which more resembles "a sect [cult]" than a church. The state attorney posted a total of twelve charges to the accounts of the accused. Among the charges are tax evasion and formation of an illegal association.
Adherents of the organization are alleged to have been financially exploited and subjected to brainwashing. Also stated was that in the treatment of drug addicts, Scientology had applied methods which are detrimental to health and which have no scientific basis.
In the course of earlier investigations by the Spanish justice department, Jentzsch, who lives in the USA, had already been temporarily taken into custody with 36 other Scientology members in 1988, according to the report. At the time, the organization had been holding a meeting in a Madrid hotel.
dpa , Madrid