Since some of the materials which describe the $cientology cult could be
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Skeptic Tank by deleting any and all possible text files which describes
the cult's hidden mythologies. I have elected to quote just a bit of the
questionable text according to the "Fair Use" legal findings afforded to
those who report. - Fredric L. Rice, The Skeptic Tank, 09/Sep/95
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Subject: St. Petersburg Times series, won 1980 Pulitzer [07/14] NEW!
Date: Wed, 26 Jul 1995 15:15:12 +0200
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Church played dirty tricks on Cazares
In Clearwater in January 1976, Gabriel blew his horn.
No walls tumbled. But Mayor Gabriel Cazares' persistent questioning of
the motives of a new religious group that had tiptoed into town helped put
a crimp in plans of the Church of Scientology to quietly take control of
His whistle-blowing moved him to a high place on the hit list
maintained in the church's Guardian Office where officials spent their days
operating an espionage system and concocting dirty tricks to discredit
"enemies" of Scientology.
Schemes devised to handle Cazares were among the most vicious described
in church documents recently released by a federal court in Washington.
Scientology's spy operation was operating smoothly in the winter of
'76, and Cazares was destined to become enmeshed in wheels turning in
L. Ron Hubbard, church founder and commodore, had come ashore in
Clearwater. The church had recently purchased the Fort Harrison Hotel for
a new base for Flag -- its program and theology center. The commodore, it
appears, was operating out of the King Arthur Courts condominium in Dunedin
where the church had rented one building of the five-building complex. Mary
Sue Hubbard, his wife and the commodore staff guardian, was on the scene.
The spy operation was focused on Washington where Mike Meisner,
assistant guardian for information D.C., was running agents (how to run
agents had been set forth in detail in a policy letter written some years
before by Hubbard). Gerald Bennett Wolfe, whose code name was "Silver," had
been employed as a clerk-typist at the Internal Revenue Service since
November 1974. Sharon Thomas had been working for the Coast Guard since
January 1975, but Meisner had given her orders to get a job at the Justice
Department. She went to work there on Jan. 29, 1976.
At the beginning of February, Meisner was ordered to Los Angeles for
briefings. While he was there, a Telex message came in from Jimmy Mulligan,
commodore staff guardian assistant for information, in Clearwater. He
wanted to know the situation regarding access to current information about
Scientology in the office of Lewis Hubbard, an IRS official.
Meisner prepared a reply. He said that he and Silver had broken into
Lewis Hubbard's office three weeks earlier with the help of Don Alverzo, a
church agent who had been sent to Washington from Los Angeles to help
because he knew how to pick locks. They found only old data on Scientology,
"I found a note on Hubbard's desk that said something like 'See
Friedberg re Scn'," Meisner said. "From that note I assumed that Friedberg
(Stephen) was handling the PT (translation: recent) Scn material ... Last
week we obtained access to Friedberg's area by leaving one of the doors
unlocked during the day ... Friedberg had material on the Calif. scene
dated as late as 26 Jan. 76 ... The PT material was sent upline last week."
(Keep Meisner in mind. In the summer of 1977, he turned himself in to
the FBI. Information that he provided led to raids on church offices and
confiscation of 48,149 documents that were the basis for the indictment and
convictions in Washington of nine Scientologists -- including Mary Sue
Hubbard, Wolfe and Ms. Thomas.)
Back in Clearwater, Guardian office officials were weighing how they
could silence Gabriel's horn.
A six-page list of LRH (Hubbard) orders from about this time has
several references to Cazares:
"5/2/76 (Feb. 2) Cazares -- Possibly Jimmy Fischer could get his school
"15/3/76 (March 3) Cazares -- is there some possibility the Cubans in
Miami might get the idea he is pro-Castro?"
On Feb. 7, the church filed a $1-million lawsuit in U.S. District Court
charging that the mayor had libeled and slandered the church and violated
its civil rights. On Feb. 28, Cazares replied to the church's libel suit
with an $8-million libel suit of his own.
He would have been surprised to know that two days earlier church
agents were in Alpine, Texas digging through records in the county clerk's
office, the police department, the office of the Border Patrol, the
Catholic Church, talking with local doctors, the midwife, long-time
residents, looking for information on him. They even visited the graveyard
looking for headstones bearing the Cazares name.
In a "Mission Report," Mike C. (Mitchell Hermann) stated: "The mission
went to Alpine and succeeded in getting a good amount of legally useable
affidavits and letters to support the fact that Cazares was not born in
Alpine, Tex. The mission also located a newspaper article announcing the
birth of a baby named 'Alpine Bill' Cazares on Jan. 30, 1920, to a father
with the same initials (J.O. Cazares) as that of Gabriel's father."
A few days later, Hermann wrote Duke Snider, deputy deputy guardian for
the U.S., that Cazares would be in Washington for a national mayor's
conference March 13-17. "I am now working on a set of Ops (operations) type
actions which could be done to welcome the mayor to the nation's capital,"
What happened then was described by government attorneys in a
"Sentencing Memorandum" to U.S. District Judge Charles R. Richey in
Washington earlier this month as he prepared to sentence the nine
"Shortly thereafter," the memorandum said, "defendant Hermann ordered
Mr. Meisner to carry out an operation on Mayor Cazares during his
Washington trip -- that operation was to involve a fake hit-and-run
accident. Defendant Sharon Thomas was to be the main participant in that
operation. She was to meet Mayor Cazares, drive him around town, and at a
predetermined location stage a hit-and-run accident with Mr. Meisner as the
"At the same time that defendant Hermann was directing Mr. Meisner to
carry out the 'accident,' defendant (Dick) Weigand responded to defendant
Snider's earlier orders by sending him a list of Clearwater, Fla.,
'enemies' and their priority for 'handling' purposes. Mayor Cazares ranked
second on the defendants Weigand's and Snider's list, right behind the St.
"On March 14, 1976, District of Columbia Collections Officer Joseph
Alesi, posing as a reporter, interviewed Mayor Cazares. During that
interview, he met defendant Sharon Thomas. Thomas then offered to show
Mayor Cazares the town. During that drive, defendant Thomas, who was
driving, staged her fake hit-and-run accident in Rock Creek Park, hitting
Michael Meisner. She drove on without reporting the incident to the police.
Of course, defendant Thomas knew that no harm had been caused to the
'victim.' In a letter dated March 15, 1976, to CSG Assistant for
Information Jimmy Mulligan and fugitive defendant Morris (Mo) Budlong,
defendant Weigand discussed how Scientology could use that 'fake' accident
against Mayor Cazares and concluded that 'I should think that the Mayor's
political days are at an end'."
The church did not use the hit-and-run incident against Cazares
immediately. That would come later.
Meanwhile, the Guardian Office was working on "Operation Italian Fog."
It was a simple Op, said Randy (National Operations Office Bruce Raymond,
also known as Randy Windment) in a March 23 letter to Dick and Greg. "The
purpose of this Op," he said, "is to actually get real documentation into
the files of Mexican license bureau of bureaus stating that the Mayor got
married to some Mexican gal 25 years ago who is not his wife so puts the
mayor in a position of bigamy. This can be accomplished either by a bribe
or a covert action. Once the docs are planted, it is cleverly exposed that
the Mayor is promiscuous and a bigamist."
The detailed plan for the operation was written April 9. It was
accompanied by a handwritten note that said: "As part of the security, if
a bribe is used data should be given to the person accepting the bribe to
pinpoint a false Who in his mind, ideally one of the Mayor's known enemies
so that if the Op gets blown up to the person who was bribed that person
would give data on the planted Who and S. (Scientology) would never come
Cazares, a Democrat, was by then a candidate for the congressional seat
held by Republican Rep. C.W. Bill Young. The church worked hard to hurt his
campaign. The congressman said recently that Steven Heard, a church public
relations official, offered over lunch with Douglas Gregory, Young's
administrative assistant, to supply the congressman with information that
could damage Cazares' campaign. Gregory -- and a day later Young, by letter
-- refused the offer.
On July 12, Operation Keller was given a green light. Its stated
purpose was "to create havoc and possible political decay for Cazares."
Within a few days, fake letters from "Sharon T" were mailed by church
agents to political leaders and reporters in Pinellas County. The letters
said Cazares had been involved in a hit-and-run accident in Washington.
Cazares asked the FBI to investigate. Young received a letter saying
the "Sharon T" letter was really authored by the Cazares campaign to make
it look like Young was involved in dirty tricks. He turned it over to the
In an Oct. 7 weekly report, Dick Weigand told Mo Budlong that the
handling of the mayor was continuing. "A recent poll conducted by the CW
Sun received phony responses from the public generated covertly which
showed that his opponent had a crushing lead on him," Weigand said.
And on Nov. 3, 1976, Joe Lisa informed Duke Snider that Mayor Cazares
had been defeated in the congressional race as a result of Guardian Program
Order 398 -- an operation to create strife between Cazares and the city
commission, and to place a church agent in his campaign organization to
create problems -- and other Scientology actions which included "spreading
rumors inside his camp, contributing to disorganization in his campaign."
The church's libel suit against Cazares was dismissed by U.S. District
Judge Ben Krentzman in Tampa in the spring of '77. The church later dropped
two other suits against Cazares, and he withdrew his suit against the