Monique Rathbun seeks sanctions, Scientology tries to kill Miscavige deposition in court today - 2014-01-22
The BBC's John Sweeney sets up today's court clash for us Monique Rathbun is back in court today in New Braunfels, Texas for her harassment lawsuit against the Church of Scientology and its leader, David Miscavige. Several different issues may come up for discussion today. Monique filed a notice to depose David Miscavige on January 29, and Scientology responded with a motion to quash the deposition. Scientology also asked Judge Dib Waldrip to reconsider his order allowing Monique to depose Miscavige. But the main action today may be Monique's motion for sanctions. She's asking Judge Waldrip to punish Scientology because its employees, she says, have been dishonest in depositions and because Scientology has not turned over evidence.
In order to prove that Scientology must have a great deal of evidence after surveilling the Rathbuns for several years, Monique submitted a stunning collection of evidence from a previous case of Scientology spying. When BBC reporter John Sweeney came to the US to make a documentary about Scientology in 2007, he was followed and harassed by the church. A striking set of text messages documented that harassment operation, and we expect that evidence to be a key subject of discussion in court today. For more about those texts, we're fortunate to have a piece written for us by John Sweeney himself. As for the hearing, we have Nick Rogers and Mike Bennitt delivering us accounts and photos of the action. Live updates will appear at the bottom of the post.
In Texas, battle royal is taking place in a courtroom between lawyers representing the 'Pope' of the Church of Scientology, David Miscavige, and Monique Rathbun, the wife of Marty Rathbun, the former Inspector-General of the Church and now one of the pope's most feared critics.