All of them, those in power, and those who want the power, would pamper us, if we agreed to overlook their crookedness by wilfully restricting our activities.
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LOS ANGELES (AP)—Stacks of papers show that reclusive Church of Scientology founder L. Ron Hubbard packed lie after lie into his books, a lawyer contended in court Thursday.
Boston attorney Michael Flynn is representing the man who acquired the papers before they were sealed by the court.
Flynn told Superior Court Judge Paul G. Breckenridge that defendant Gerald Armstrong received the papers legally from a British writer who was preparing a biography on Hubbard.
The plaintiffs, the church and Hubbard's wife, Mary Sue, contend Armstrong, a former sect archivist, stole the five boxes of personal papers written over the years by Hubbard.
Sect attorneys say the papers belong to the sect, not Hubbard, and include Hubbard's unpublished book "Excalibur."
Flynn said Armstrong gave him the papers in 1982 because of the alleged lies he uncovered. Flynn alleges Hubbard never received college bachelor's and doctorate degrees; is not a nuclear scientist; and was not crippled and blinded in war, then healed through the philosophy of "Dianetics," the book that launched the sect in 1950.
Armstrong received the papers legally, said Flynn, who argued that Hubbard and his wife are public figures and the public has a right to know "what this man has done" in defrauding them of millions of dollars.
The attorney said he planned to call a "surprise witness," a sect official who may testify he has seen Hubbard in the past few months and knows of Hubbard's whereabouts. Flynn declined to identify the witness. Hubbard has not been seen publicly since March 1980.
Mrs. Hubbard's attorney, Barry Litt, told the judge, "These materials were completely private and were to be returned after the biography was completed and Mr. Armstrong has no right to them."
Armstrong violated a trust by taking the papers from writer Omar Garrison, who later was paid a fee by a sect-publishing company when the biography project was halted, he claimed. Litt accused Armstrong and Flynn of planning to use the papers in other lawsuits against the sect in a "scheme to obtain millions of dollars in damage claims."
Flynn, who has filed a harassment suit against the sect, also represents about 20 other people in suits against Scientology.