Terrorised by Tom's cult: As a war reporter JOHN SWEENEY was gassed, shot at and shelled - but nothing scared him as much as being hounded by the Scientologists - 2012-07-10
When I went to wars as a reporter, I was gassed, shot at, shelled, bombed and had two sticks of dynamite shoved up my nose. But never did I feel such fear for my grip on reality as I did investigating the Church of Scientology for the BBC's Panorama.
Five years ago, I spent weeks at the centre of the church's attention. Private investigators who, I believe, were working for the church chased me around the streets of Los Angeles, invaded my hotel at midnight and put me under surveillance. Strangers spied on my wedding and knocked on the doors of my neighbours.
In the end, I lost it on camera, doing a good impression of an exploding tomato.