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Scientology: the inside story The cult and a private eye

Title: Scientology: the inside story The cult and a private eye
Date: Tuesday, 12 April 1994
Publisher: The Argus (UK)
Author: Paul Bracchi
Main source: link (1.02 MiB)

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THIS man is working for the Church of Scientology.

But you won't find him hovering on a street corner with a smile and a clipboard.

He is an American private detective.

Ex-Los Angeles police officer Eugene Ingram was sent to Britain to investigate the alleged theft of confidential documents from Saint Hill in East Grinstead, the national headquarters of the cult.

Relatives of one leading anti-Scientology campaigner in Sussex have found Mr Ingram on their doorstep.

Clergymen who have attacked the cult have also been targeted.

Canon Roger Brown, Vicar of St Swithin's, East Grinstead, said: "Initially, he seemed polite but I think I detected a slightly hostile undertone and he became slightly aggravated when he realised I was not going to play ball.

"I actually felt it was intrusive and slightly intimidating."

Mr Ingram also contacted the Evening Argus following our investigation into Scientology last month.

We didn't play ball either.

Mr Ingram has come under scrutiny in the American Press.

His name also surfaced in a U.S. libel action brought by the cult against a former member.

Defence witness Garry Scarf called the private detective an "insidious individual".

He also made, very serious allegations under oath about Mr Ingram's conduct.

Mr Scarff asked for his address to be kept secret because he claimed members of the Church of Scientology in America had made death threats against him and his family.

The Los Angeles police department refused to comment on the claims.

But Peter Mansell, public affairs officer at Saint Hill, called them a pack of lies.

[Picture / Caption: American private eye Eugene Ingram sent to Britain to investigate 'theft' of documents]

Referring to the accusations against Mr Ingram, he said: "The allegations made by Scarff against Mr Ingram have absolutely nothing whatsoever to do with the case. Furthermore, the allegations are absolutely false."

He added: "The FBI is currently investigating a perjury complaint against Mr Scarff, filed by Mr Ingram, who is a licensed private investigator, based on these exact false allegations."

In an article in the Los Angeles Times in June, 1990, Mr Ingram said he has never harassed anyone during his inquiries.

He is quoted as saying: "People who claim that I have conducted an improper investigation against them probably have so many things to hide."

But he has been taking his orders, from lawyers representing the cult in America, which has harassed and abused opponents in the past, according to one U.S. judge.

In our book that makes Mr Ingram 'Fair Game', a label coined by the man who founded the alternative religion.

To find out what it means turn to pages 4 and 5.