[Fwd: FC: Note from Keith Henson on his conviction in Scientology case]

From: Eugene.Leitl@lrz.uni-muenchen.de
Date: Sat Apr 28 2001 - 14:38:01 MDT

-------- Original Message --------
From: Declan McCullagh <declan@well.com>
Subject: FC: Note from Keith Henson on his conviction in Scientology case
To: politech@politechbot.com
CC: hkhenson@pacbell.net

Background on how the Scientologists won a conviction of a prominent critic:

Background on Scientology and its fight over alt.religion.scientology:



Date: Fri, 27 Apr 2001 20:47:44 -0700
From: "H. Keith Henson" <hkhenson@pacbell.net>
To: Declan McCullagh <declan@well.com>

[snip --DBM]

Dear Judge Wallerstein:

The Scientologists see the decision in my case as a great victory over one
of their critics. I think a much larger number of people will come to see
the result as a serious miscarriage of justice and an assault on free speech.

I don't believe any of us fully anticipated the effects of your pretrial
rulings on restricting testimony about the deaths of Ashlee Shaner, Stacy
Moxon Meyer and Lisa McPherson, or restricting testimony on Scientology
beliefs and practices. Mr. Harr stuck to the letter of your rulings and
once even stopped DDA Robert Schwarz from having read into the record a
reference in exhibit 23 to Stacy Moxon Meyer ("for the latest victim").

But the effect, as you can see from the below declaration was to mislead
the jury into thinking that my use of "destroy them utterly" (quotes in my
posting) was a threat when it was understood by virtually all
alt.religion.scientogy readers to be a reference to Scientology's fair game
threats and practices against critics.

The below declaration may be filed in court early next week, with a motion
to reconsider JNOV. Unfortunately, this is non-standard practice, so I
have to go pro se to file it. If it would be permissible for Jim Harr to
come back in for sentencing on May 16 after substituting out so I can file
this, I would greatly appreciate someone from your office telling him so.

Thank you very much,

Keith Henson



       I, Keith Henson, declare:

       The information set forth in this declaration is known to
me personally. If called upon to testify in court as to the
truthfulness of the facts set forth in this declaration, I would
do so.

       1. In the just completed trial, defense was forbidden by
the court under Evidence Code 352 from raising issues of
Scientology beliefs or practices, such as "fair game" or TR-L
(Training Routine Lying) and also from mentioning the reason
Henson was picketing, the deaths which occurred in May and June of

       2. As a result of the first restriction, defense was not able to
dispute the testimony of Ken Hoden on the stand, even though defense knew
Mr. Hoden was not telling the truth because this would have led right into
TR-L, a Scientology belief or practice.

       3. As a specific example (and defendant is relying on
memory of testimony rather than a transcript) Mr. Hoden claimed
to have known for 25 years the woman (Helen Burke) who was shot
in the Portland facility of Scientology in 1996. His testimony
was that her unborn baby had been shot through the head and that
Scientology had not taken threats by the assailant (Godeka)
seriously after threats had been made. Defendant knew both
statements were untrue and told his lawyer in court because
defendant had closely followed this tragic story as it unfolded.

       Exhibit A is the initial report of the shootings, Exhibit B
reports the safe birth of the woman's child, Bridget, a few
months after the shooting, hardly something which could have
happened if the unborn child had been shot through the head!
Exhibit C reports sentencing Godeka, judged guilty but insane.
Exhibits A and C mention that Godeka was under a court order at
the time of the rampage, strongly implying Scientology *had*
taken Godeka's threats seriously.

       But the biggest omission from the testimony is that Godeka was a
Scientologist, who had spent a lot of money on Scientology and
who wanted $50,000 from Scientology for "ruining his life."

       Scientology has had far more trouble with current and
former Scientologist becoming violent than critics becoming

       Defendant understood (perhaps incorrectly) from his attorney that he
could not point out Hoden's testimony was false because any defendant's
testimony as to why Hoden was lying would lead directly into fair game,
TR-L and other Scientology beliefs and practices, and delving into such
subjects would have been a violation of the court's order.

       4. The same violation of the court's orders would have
resulted from defendant trying to explain Exhibits 23-23A, which has the
quoted words "destroy them utterly." This, as Exhibit D (search
results for these words of over 1000 web pages from www.google.com) shows
is a common paraphrase of the last three words of Scientology's "fair game
policy" (". . . if possible, of course, ruin him

       Quoting an opponents words is a time honored tradition in
public debate and these words were instantly recognized as a Scientology
reference by those participating in debate on the news group in which the
posting was made (they were used unquoted in another posting exhibit by
"Bev" to which the defendant responded ". . . the latter task seem[s] easier").

          This reference to the "fair game" threat *by Scientology* toward
critics (who are also known as enemy or "suppressive persons" in the fair
game policy) almost certainly was seen by the jury as a threat against
Scientologists *by the defendant*. This perception could not be corrected
because of the court's restrictions about mentioning Scientology beliefs or
practices under Evidence Code 352.

       Even allowing the jury to see the un-redacted version of the posting
would have been exculpatory, since the next paragraph makes clear that my
means to "destroy them utterly" was a series of pickets.

       I declare under penalty of perjury under the laws of the
State of California that the above is true and correct.

       Executed on April 27, 2001 at Palo Alto, California.

       Keith Henson

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