Belgium Clamps Down on Scientology Church

The Belgian authorities have indicted the Belgian chapter of the Church of Scientology, the European headquarters of the Church, as well as 12 of its leading members. According to the office of Public Prosecutor Jean-Claude Van Espen Scientology is a criminal organization which has committed several crimes including extortion, fraud, violations of the trade law, violations of the privacy law and the illegal practice of medicine.

On 30 September 1999, 120 Belgian police officers raided 25 Scientology offices and seized tons of documents, which took the public prosecutor eight years to examine.

The European headquarters of Scientology is based in the Wetstraat in Brussels, next to the headquarters of the Belgian Christian-Democrat party. The Church is active in 156 countries. It is recognized as a church in the United States, but not in Belgium which only recognizes Roman Catholicism, Protestantism, Anglicanism, the Orthodox Church, Judaism and Islam.

Scientology, along with other churches such as the Jehovah’s Witnesses, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints [Mormons], Anthroposophy, Opus Dei and various Catholic and Protestant evangelical and Pentecostal groups, figures on an official Belgian list of “harmful sectarian organizations”

Sometimes even a bad law catches a real villain...

That the Belgian state treats criminals as criminals is not something I'd disapprove of, even when it's done for the wrong reasons.
Scientology may have the status of religion in the United States, but from the point of view of the US government that is mostly a fiscal category. The US doesn't really "recognize" religions the way the Belgian state does, and for over a quarter of a century the IRS considered scientology a business like any other. A business with practices no other honest business would engage in.
It is my opinion that the state should neither recognize nor condemn religions. Whatever myths one chooses to believe is one's own problem, even when the myths in question border on the absurd or the insane. The state does however have an obligation to protect people who have chosen to no longer to accept the myths against coercion from members of their former religion.


10 points, out of 10.

But there's more
1) Separation of state and religion
2) Separation of state and education
3) Separation of state and economy
4) Separation of state and law
5) Separation of state and culture
6) Separation of state and development aid

The list goes on and on...

Re 4): don't come and cite 'Trias Politca', as it does not exist, and probably never has. As long as heads of state (or Justice Ministers) appoint, promote, demote, suspend and dismiss judges, no judge will ever be independent. This is best illustrated by the recent case of the incestuous Crown Court ruling on the SIOE demo ban.


"...a criminal organization which has committed several crimes including extortion, fraud, violations of the trade law, violations of the privacy law..." Sounds like government to me...


I bet they'd get alot more respect if they publicly murdered a few film directors in the name of L. Ron Hubbard (PBUH).