Germany Vs. Scientology -- Group Goes To Court To Seek Status As A Religion, Not Business - 1997-10-28
The Los Angeles-based Church of Scientology won a legal battle in July when a court in the Baden-Wuerttemberg state capital, Stuttgart, ruled that Scientology was a religious society, not a business as many critics argue. The state is seeking to overturn the decision in the Berlin court.
The court case could be the first to clarify Scientology's status in Germany, where the government has taken steps to outlaw the group. Scientology says its members suffer discrimination, including banning its members from membership in political parties and putting the group under surveillance as a threat to democracy, a step toward seeking an official ban.