Scientology Church Fails in Effort to Regain Tax-Exempt Status - 1984-09-27

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F43.png Scientology Church Fails in Effort to Regain Tax-Exempt Status September 27, 1984, Philip Smith, Washington Post

The U.S. Tax Court has upheld the removal of tax-exempt status from the Church of Scientology of California -- saying that the church "made a business out of selling religion" -- and ordered it to pay $1.4 million in back taxes for the years 1970 through 1972.

The California organization, the "mother church" of U.S. Scientologists, had challenged the Internal Revenue Service's 1967 removal of the exemption, claiming that the move was politically motivated and unconstitutional.

But in a 222-page ruling handed down here Monday, Judge Samuel B. Sterrett said that while the group was organized to "propagate the faith of Scientology," it had "diverted millions of dollars through a bogus trust fund and a sham corporation" and "conspired for almost a decade" to defraud the U.S. government and thwart federal investigators.


{{cite news | first = Philip | last = Smith | title = Scientology Church Fails in Effort to Regain Tax-Exempt Status | url = https://www.washingtonpost.com/archive/politics/1984/09/27/scientology-church-fails-in-effort-to-regain-tax-exempt-status/04ac6dd7-cb07-46e3-a869-d42a0df6d020/?utm_term=.5fd958c60d92 | work = Washington Post | date = September 27, 1984 | accessdate = February 17, 2017 }}