Author Topic: The Desmond Family v. Narconon of Georgia, Narconon International, et al  (Read 238499 times)

Offline Mary_McConnell

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Of interest during the court hearing yesterday it was brought up several times by both council for the plaintiff and the presiding judge that Narconon of Georgia,s Executive director, Mary Reiser is NOT a credible individual in regard to this wrongful death case.

 This lack of credibility must really impose great difficulty for Mary Reisers attorneys.


As it is my understanding after attending yesterdays court proceedings defendants council and or its agents read this website. So on that note I would like to leave a small sampling of attorney Barbara Marschalk clients handy work. 

Bears repeating, lol!!
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Offline SocialTransparency

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On the Motion to Unseal Documents, Judge Hydrick ordered the Narconon attorneys to go through the documents currently under seal, and page by page, indicate exactly what the privacy interests were and why they should take precedence over the public's right to access the documents.  She stated that this should have been done prior to the hearing, and gave them 11 days in which to do this.

  We are now at that 11 day mark.

Offline BigBeard

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Why do I suspect every page will come back marked, "This should be kept private because we want it that way."??

BigBeard

Offline ethercat

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Why do I suspect every page will come back marked, "This should be kept private because we want it that way."??

I don't think the judge will buy into that.  She already seems mightily irritated with them.   ;) 
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Offline Mary_McConnell

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Well, this is interesting. Narconon INT is responding to the Amended Complaint ( w/ RICO ):

Docket Text Details
Case ID   10A28641
Description   RULE 5.2 CERTIFICATE
Docket Filing Date   27-JUL-2012
Associated Party   CHERYL H SHAW
Text     
  MR DEF NARCONON INTL'S 1ST INTER TO PLTFS (AMENDED COMPLAINT); DEF NARCONON INTL'S 1ST REQ FOR PROD OF DOCUMENTS TO PLTFS (AMENDED COMPLAINT)

Perhaps the judge has already made a decision on the RICO issue?

Plaintiffs Patrick C. Desmond and Mary C. Desmond, individually,
and Mary C. Desmond, as Administratrix of the Estate of Patrick W. Desmond,
file this First Amended Complaint.

The Plaintiffs add counts of Civil RICO
by Fraudulent Statements to a Government Agency,
Mail Fraud, and Theft by Deception.

Plaintiffs hereby incorporate by reference each
allegation, count, claim, request for damages, and
all supporting evidence set out in their Original Complaint.

http://forum.reachingforthetippingpoint.net/index.php/topic,8408.msg22048.html#msg22048
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Offline snippy

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                8-^*   


Offline Mary_McConnell

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                8-^*

Not sure if you read the whole document but it's quite damning!
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Offline snippy

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Oh I agree!  I thought I picked the smiley thingy for "May justice prevail and the truth be discovered rather than slithered under."   My bad.


Offline ethercat

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Oh I agree!  I thought I picked the smiley thingy for "May justice prevail and the truth be discovered rather than slithered under."   My bad.

Your smiley thingy is fine.  I'm certainly with you - I think everyone here is - on hoping for justice to prevail.

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Offline snippy

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Docket Text Details

Case ID                 10A28641
Description              MOTION
Docket Filing Date      01-AUG-2012
Associated Party      STEVAN A MILLER
Text      
     AADINO - DEF NARCONONM OF GEORGIA INC'S MOTION AND INCORPORATED BRIEF IN SUPPORT THEREOF TO KEEP CERTAIN DOCS FILED WITH THE COURT UNDER SEAL

Offline Mary_McConnell

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hehehe! The fireworks have begun. Can't wait to read that !

ps: you are up as late  as me! 
Goodnite  :)
I am a volunteer advocate for victims of the Narconon scam. I am a former scientologist. I post anonymously. Mary McConnell is my long time nom de plume. Feel free to contact me for assistance in righting the wrongs.

Offline snippy

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Shhhhh!      cU#__
« Last Edit: August 02, 2012, 06:29 by snippy »

Offline ethercat

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This is another delaying tactic.  They were supposed to have given the Judge a page by page list of what their privacy concerns are - unless that's what this is (which I doubt, because I was under the impression the list would not be filed).  If this is not that, I imagine it will probably anger the Judge.

Disclaimer: For the defendants and their attorneys who want to point to our discussion on this forum, and say things like:

Quote from: Defendent's Lawyers
From: NNGa's Response To Plaintiffs' Consolidated Motion, Memorandum, And Supplemental Memorandum To Unseal Documents

Indeed, two individuals who are wholly unrelated to this litigation have filed a Petition to UnsealDocuments of Record and Open Depositions. These two individuals are affiliated with the website www.reachingforthetippingpoint.net.

A quick review of that website will reveal photographs of the court file in this case - and extensive discussions about the various pleadings filed by lawyers - much of which would never be admissible in front of any DeKalb County State Court jury. The websites cherry-pick the documents to suit their agenda - the public attack of Narconon. They do not limit their intrusion to what may ultimately be admissible evidence before any jury that may hear this case. The commentary and conclusions drawn in the banter in these websites are not legally sound. Yet, it is all available for anyone, including the prospective jury pool for this case, to review.


I will just quote Social Transparency, since he said it well:

You lawyers need to come to grips with the fact Georgia by law allows we the citizenry to have access to information that impacts us. You the defendants lawyers in this case DO NOT have some type of private club that decides when,where and how we the citizenry gain said public information or how we discuss it in whatever format we so choose.

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Offline SocialTransparency

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This is another delaying tactic.  They were supposed to have given the Judge a page by page list of what their privacy concerns are - unless that's what this is (which I doubt, because I was under the impression the list would not be filed).  If this is not that, I imagine it will probably anger the Judge.

Disclaimer: For the defendants and their attorneys who want to point to our discussion on this forum, and say things like:

Quote from: Defendent's Lawyers
From: NNGa's Response To Plaintiffs' Consolidated Motion, Memorandum, And Supplemental Memorandum To Unseal Documents

Indeed, two individuals who are wholly unrelated to this litigation have filed a Petition to UnsealDocuments of Record and Open Depositions. These two individuals are affiliated with the website www.reachingforthetippingpoint.net.

A quick review of that website will reveal photographs of the court file in this case - and extensive discussions about the various pleadings filed by lawyers - much of which would never be admissible in front of any DeKalb County State Court jury. The websites cherry-pick the documents to suit their agenda - the public attack of Narconon. They do not limit their intrusion to what may ultimately be admissible evidence before any jury that may hear this case. The commentary and conclusions drawn in the banter in these websites are not legally sound. Yet, it is all available for anyone, including the prospective jury pool for this case, to review.


I will just quote Social Transparency, since he said it well:

You lawyers need to come to grips with the fact Georgia by law allows we the citizenry to have access to information that impacts us. You the defendants lawyers in this case DO NOT have some type of private club that decides when,where and how we the citizenry gain said public information or how we discuss it in whatever format we so choose.

 As a Petitioner to Unseal Documents of Record and Depositions pertaining to this wrongful death lawsuit I did question the merit and reasoning behind attorney Marschalks claims.

http://alley.ethercat.com/storage/10A28641/10A28641-2-2012-05-31NNGAsResponseToPlaintiffsConsolidatedMotionMemorandumAndSupplementalMemorandumToUnsealDocuments.pdf

 Thing is as I read the above linked document it appears to be written in a somewhat subliminally threatening manner.

 After watching Ms.Marschalk professionally representing her client on 7/12/2012 I came away with a feeling   http://link=http://alley.ethercat.com/storage/10A28641/10A28641-2-2012-05-31NNGAsResponseToPlaintiffsConsolidatedMotionMemorandumAndSupplementalMemorandumToUnsealDocuments.pdf   was drafted with the aid of scientology and to be more specific Los Angeles based scientology legal staff.

 This veiled attempt @ instilling fear or impinging on the civil liberties of a private citizen only re enforces my belief that those documents in question be made publicly available to we the citizenry.  I do believe the judge has ruled on this and I am more than satisfied with the courts decision on the matter.

 On that note I do not personally take umbrage in regard to how Ms.Marschalk represents her client. She is paid to do the best job she can. Alas defending the indefensible does have its downside.

 http://sos.georgia.gov/archives/who_are_we/rims/best_practices_resources/open_records_act.htm

Now we must dance!

 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KF33V0tqrEc
 
 
« Last Edit: August 03, 2012, 10:37 by SocialTransparency »

Offline BigBeard

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^^^So, did the judge unseal the records??
BigBeard

Offline ethercat

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^^^So, did the judge unseal the records??
Short answer: We're still waiting to find out.

Long answer: I'm glad you asked, because I had been meaning to write a more descriptive post as to what's going on.

This gets complicated, but here is my understanding of it.  Keep in mind that I haven't seen the sealed documents, and IANAL.  This is what I have gathered from reading the documents we do have access to, discussing the issue with our attorney who filed our Petition to Unseal, and listening to what was said in the courtroom.  I may not be totally correct on this.  Some of the specifics are contained in the Plaintiffs' Brief in Support of Motion for Sanctions, Plaintiffs' Motion and Memo to Unseal Documents and their Supplemental Memo also.

The decision whether or not to open these documents is done on a page by page basis (I think), and Judge Hydrick has to make a decision on each, based on the reasons the Defendents state that it should be kept sealed.  This may take some time, since she has to consider each one individually.  (And you know how the cult likes to drag court cases out - now they have submitted the Motion to keep them sealed; they have probably snowed her under a mountain of reasons.  It may be a while before we have any ruling, thereby allowing NN to collect more payments and potential victims, before a figurative ax of some sort falls.)

There are also 2 types of "sealing" being considered, with different legal considerations.  To us, however, both mean we can't get our hands on them yet.

There is "under seal", that is, items that are subject to a "protective order", and there is "sealed", that is, sealed until opened for use.  There was a protective order signed by the judge (who at the time was Antonio Delcampo, who has since resigned as a judge and is now part of Harris, Penn, Lowry, and Delcampo, the Plaintiffs' legal team). 

The documents "under seal" are listed in Exhibit A of the Plaintiffs' Motion to Unseal (linked above):
FILING UNDER SEAL
Plaintiffs hereby file the following documents under seal:
• Urgent Directive Documents - Bates Nos. 008588 - 008593
• Post-Incident Documents - Bates Nos. 009821 - 009834
• Board of Investigation Documents - Bates Nos. 009910 - 009976
• Brad Taylor Personnel File - Bates Nos. 009977 - 10011
• Misc. Narconon Documents - Bates Nos. 10012 -10116
• Brad Taylor Student File - Bates Nos. 10117-10993

Then there are the Depositions which are filed with the Court in sealed envelopes, but are not formally "under seal".  The envelopes contain both a transcript and a disc with the video of the depositions.  I am told that it is common practice to file depositions this way to assure there is no tampering until they are used in the case, but presumably the depositions are supportive of the Plaintiffs' claims in the Amended Complaint and Plaintiffs' Brief in Support of Motion for Sanctions, and therefore, are being used in the case.  They have been filed in sealed envelopes, I believe, as a precaution by the Plaintiff, to avoid possibly running afoul of a Protective Order (below), or, at least, being accused of such.

Here is the Stipulation and Confidentiality Agreement, which resulted in the Protective Order.

Rule 21 (see below) says this:
Quote
Rule 21.1. Motions and Orders
Upon motion by any party to any civil or criminal action, or upon the court’s own motion, after hearing, the court may limit access to court files respecting that action. The order of limitation shall specify the part of the file to which access is limited, the nature and duration of the limitation, and the reason for limitation.

and this:

Quote
Rule 21.2. Finding of Harm
An order limiting access shall not be granted except upon a finding that the harm otherwise resulting to the privacy of a person in interest clearly outweighs the public interest.

There is nothing I have seen that specifies "the part of the file to which access is limited" or "the nature and duration of the limitation", and nothing from the Judge that specifies "the reason for limitation".

We also know that people (the public) are being harmed financially, psychologically, and possibly physically, from this type of information not being available to potential clients of Narconon.

About the "Board of Investigation Documents":  The Plaintiffs had asked in discovery for anything that related to problems with housing.  The Defendants had said there were no such documents.  Eventually, these "Board of Investigation Documents" were produced long after they were asked for, long after the protective order was issued, and right before Allison Riepe's deposition on January 26, 2012.

 The problems with housing had gotten so bad that Mary Rieser called a formal "Board of Investigation"1 to decide what to do about housing and Delgado Development (Don and Maria Delgado), BEFORE Patrick's death. 

The B of I involved communications back and forth with Narconon International, findings by the local Narconon "justices" (this may have a scientology name that I don't know), and a decision (which I believe is the "Urgent Directive documents") to put the Delgados on probation with regard to the housing.  The possibility was even discussed of putting the housing under the control of Narconon International, which Harris pointed out in the hearing, "would have been illegal also."

The Defendents' responses to discovery stated that no such documents existed, and in her deposition(s), Mary Rieser said "I forgot." 

There have still never been any documents produced that show the Delgados were ever taken off probation, which is inconceivable since the B of I was so bureaucratic and (my observation) the Delgados continued to provide housing until Darrell Hall took over in 2010, AFTER this case was filed. 

Aside:
NNGa likens the housing to "hiring a coffee service" and expecting a certain level of service from them, except they say that since Maria Delgado had pull in the local "church", they couldn't just fire her and hire another housing provider.

Like you're gonna tell your coffee service, "hey, we're putting you on probation," instead of just dropping their service and hiring a new company - this, to me, is proof of the control NN had over housing.  Read Mary's post for why this is a crucial issue.

Plaintiffs argue:
Quote
Prior to the filing of the documents with the Court, the terms of the Protective Order governed the dissemination of the documents. Although Plaintiffs do not believe that the
Protective Order prevented the disclosure of the documents in the first place, since they were
used "for litigation", that question is now moot, because the documents have been filed with the
Court.


They cite Rule 21 of the State of Georgia Superior Court Uniform Rules and Atlanta Journal v. Long, 258 Ga. 410 (1988), which is discussed on the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press, Georgia - Open Courts Compendium, Access to civil records page: http://www.rcfp.org/georgia-open-courts-compendium/general-2

There are also some "privilege logs" which the NNs say exclude certain documents from being required to be produced based on Attorney-Client privilege in anticipation of litigation.  Here are NNInt's Privilege Log and Amended Privilege Log and here is NNGa's Privilege Log.  There was also argument in the hearing (I seem to recall) and elsewhere (documents) over when exactly NN anticipated litigation.

I do wish we had someone here with enough Georgia-specific legal knowledge and time to cut to the chase on this for us, instead of my legally unsound "presumably"-ing, "I believe"-ing, and "(I think)"-ing.    :D

It would also be nice if an ex-member with in-depth knowledge of the procedures followed in a "Board of Investigation" could write up a description of it.  Or maybe someone could point to an existing description.


1 From Ray Hill's Scientology Glossary:
B of I: Board of investigation. A Scientology kangaroo-court-like internal Ethics board. "A B of I will be convened for Harry next Tuesday."
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Offline ethercat

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Thing is as I read the above linked document it appears to be written in a somewhat subliminally threatening manner.

I agree, but it doesn't scare me.  Or you either, if I know you:D

Quote
http://sos.georgia.gov/archives/who_are_we/rims/best_practices_resources/open_records_act.htm

This doesn't apply to the judicial system - there was a ruling a while back to keep the judicial system and the administrative system separate.  I can dig up the reference, but don't have it right at hand at the moment.  The Rule 21 of the Uniform Superior Court Rules covers the Courts (there's a link to that in my previous post).
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Offline who me?

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About the "Board of Investigation Documents":  The Plaintiffs had asked in discovery for anything that related to problems with housing.  The Defendants had said there were no such documents.  Eventually, these "Board of Investigation Documents" were produced long after they were asked for, long after the protective order was issued, and right before Allison Riepe's deposition on January 26, 2012.

 The problems with housing had gotten so bad that Mary Rieser called a formal "Board of Investigation"1 to decide what to do about housing and Delgado Development (Don and Maria Delgado), BEFORE Patrick's death. 

The B of I involved communications back and forth with Narconon International, findings by the local Narconon "justices" (this may have a scientology name that I don't know), and a decision (which I believe is the "Urgent Directive documents") to put the Delgados on probation with regard to the housing.  The possibility was even discussed of putting the housing under the control of Narconon International, which Harris pointed out in the hearing, "would have been illegal also."

The Defendents' responses to discovery stated that no such documents existed, and in her deposition(s), Mary Rieser said "I forgot." 

...

It would also be nice if an ex-member with in-depth knowledge of the procedures followed in a "Board of Investigation" could write up a description of it.  Or maybe someone could point to an existing description.


1 From Ray Hill's Scientology Glossary:
B of I: Board of investigation. A Scientology kangaroo-court-like internal Ethics board. "A B of I will be convened for Harry next Tuesday."

Not an ex, just a person who dislikes people being taking advantage of by this scam, and some one who is really pissed that the government can't be bothered to act despite previous deaths. I had a little time and used some google-fu:

Page 66 of:
http://www.tep-online.info/laku/usa/reli/scien/SECRETDOX/ADMIN_DICTIONARY.pdf

BOARD OF INVESTIGATION, 1-thepurpose of a Board of Investigation is to help LRH discover the cause in any conflict, poor performance or down statistic. A Board of Investigation is composed of not less than three and not more than five members. A majority of the members must be senior to the persons being investigated except when this is impossible. The board may investigate by calling in a body on the persons concerned or by sitting and summoning witnesses or principals. A Board of Investigation is a much less serious affair than a Committee of Evidence. Persons appearing before it are not under duress or punishment. The whole purpose is to get at the facts. A Board may recommend a Committee of Evidence. (HCO PL 4 Jun 66) 2. a Board of Investigation may (and should) be convened any time there is an unusual improvement in an org or its statistics. Such a Board must (a) isolate the reasons or changes which brought about the improvement. (b) draw up their findings in the form of policy or directives to pass them on to the convening authority and W recommend commending any person found responsible for the improvement (the board does not command, it only recommends, the convening authority alone may issue the commendation). (HCO PL 31 Oct 66 II) Abbr. B of I.

Start on page 5 of the linked file for the policy letter for setting up and running a board of investigation:
http://www.tep-online.info/laku/usa/reli/scien/SECRETDOX/Management_Series_2_txt.pdf
Just a small part (I like the reference to disaster):
“So in the face of disaster issue an urgent directive as best you can and hope you are right in
your directed action.
THE BOARD
Convene now a Board of Investigation composed of impartial members who will investigate
Thoroughly”
« Last Edit: August 03, 2012, 16:49 by who me? »

Offline ethercat

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Very nice!  Thank you!  According to this: http://www.tep-online.info/laku/usa/reli/scien/SECRETDOX/Management_Series_2_txt.pdf , the Urgent Directive would have come first, before the Board of Investigation.  It says this:

Quote
ACTIONS, EXECUTIVE, FOR HANDLING DISASTROUS OCCURRENCES

There are three steps necessary on the part of a senior executive who discovers a situation which may be disastrous to the org.

The executive's actions are as follows:
1. Issue orders of a remedying or preventive nature instantly by directive, to remain in effect until all data is in. This is called an urgent directive.

2. Appoint a Board of Investigation to investigate the matter, with orders to investigate fully and couch findings in terms of a directive or policy for issue,

3. Pass or modify the Board's findings as orders to supplant the urgent directive issued as I above. This is called the final directive or policy.

Then it says:

Quote
However, for such a directive to remain law forever is obviously wrong as it may be wholly arbitrary and may eventually get in somebody's hair.

So for them to have issued an Urgent Directive, then a Board of Investigation, and not have issued the Final Directive (which they claim they have no documents for) is wrong, according to Hubbard.

Quote
THE FINAL DIRECTIVE

When the convening authority has the board's findings to hand, he studies the proceedings and findings to make certain that the disaster is fully handled by the findings and that further disasters of like nature are inhibited by these findings from occurring.

If he is satisfied on this score (that the findings are adequate), he must now see that they do not violate the fast flow system of management to any great degree and that they are as adequate as the urgent directive in arresting the disaster. If so, the executive sends the findings through regular channels with all papers to make them into law. Until actually law, the urgent directive is still in force.

If he is not satisfied or doubtful that the findings are adequate, he can convene another board to do a better job. If he does convene another board, the urgent directive remains in force.

The findings actually become law only when
a. The convening authority has passed them as they are or modified by himself or another board

b. The findings have gone through all steps necessary to become law

c. The findings are finally the law.

Then the urgent directive is canceled. It must be canceled when the findings become law and may not remain as a possible arbitrary.

The above is good administration.

Some governing bodies use only urgent directives.

Some use only committees or boards or senates.

To use less than all three in the face of a disastrous situation is poor admin.

About Personnel, it says this:

Quote
PERSONNEL
Steps 1, 2 and 3 can also be used on personnel where the executive thinks a staff member is the reason. Suspension from post pending investigation would be the urgent directive in this case. However, the staff member so suspended may not be deprived of wages and must be given an apology if found not to be the reason. And no real action may be taken unless there is an ethics action recommended by the board and only if the person is found guilty in that ethics action.

In this case there are four steps:
1. Urgent directive

2. Board of Investigation

3. Ethics action or no ethics action

4. Final directive either (a) restoring the personnel and stating the real causes in the form of a separate directive with long-range actions to handle the situation, or (b) appointing a new personnel and recommending in a separate directive long-range actions to handle the situation.

The steps are four because there are two matters involved: (a) the personnel and (b) the situation. Even if the personnel was at fault, there must be something else wrong too if a  personnel got into a post who didn't belong there.

So there really HAD to be a Final Directive, or else they're squirrels.  And poor admins.

Or Squirrel Admins!   :D

From the admin dictionary:
Quote
SQUIRREL ADMIN, the departure or alteration of standard admin. The use of the word "squirrel" is long standing because squirrels in their little cages go 'round and 'round and get nowhere and they are also, a bad pun, "nutty," meaning a bit crazy. The main source of squirrel admin is simply ignorance of policy procedure or the neglect of reading and applying it as simply as that.
(HCO PL 4 Jun 71)

  :-D^\^\

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Offline SocialTransparency

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  My head. This stuff hurts it. (:E(