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Scientology Leader Denies Manson 'Family' Connection
By Randi Mettetal
Neither Charles Milles Manson nor any of his band of hate-oriented hippies were members of the Church of Scientology, a spokesman claimed as the organization offered a $30,000 reward to halt what it called "a vicious and well-organized rumor campaign."
The Rev. Gordon Mustain, public relations director for the Church of Scientology in the United States, told newsmen at the Los Angeles Press Club information linking the Manson "family" to a "satanically oriented group called 'The Process'" originally came from his organization.
Manson and six of his followers have been charged with the Aug. 9 slaughter of actress Sharon Tate and four others in Benedict Canyon, and the murders the next day of Los Feliz market owner Leno La Bianca and his wife, Rosemary.
The Manson "family" also has been linked in newspaper articles to the murders last month of Doreen Gaul and James Sharp, members of the Church of Scientology.
No Church Connection
"Within 24 hours after Los Angeles police released the first information regarding Charles Mason's 'family' and their alleged involvement with the Tate murders, Church (of Scientology) officials had, without solicitation, turned over to police . . . information . . . relating to . . . 'The Process,' which bears . . . numerous similarities to the Manson 'family' and is known at one time to have been active in Southern California," said Mustain.
"'The Process' is not, and has never been affiliated with, derived from, or in any way connected to the Church of Scientology," Rev. Mustain declared.
He claimed news stories linking the Church with Manson and the killings of the Scientology members was the work of "worldwide mental health front groups" who use "certain unscrupulous reporters."
Mustain said it was for this reason, along with allegations that the Church of Scientology was attempting to block police work, that the reward was being offered.
The reward, as explained by the Church official, is broken into three parts.
An advertisement appearing Friday morning in a metropolitan Los Angeles newspaper read as follows:
"The Church of Scientology will pay $30,000 for information leading to the prosecution and conviction of those persons responsible for the following acts:
"1 — $10,000 — impending the police investigation into the murders of Doreen Gaul and James Sharp . . . by causing false information to be given to the police and public.
"2 — $10,000 — Knowingly causing to be denied to the police information which would result in successful completion of the investigation and prosecution of those guilty of this vile and murderous act.
"3 — $10,000 — Causing to be circulated by means written and spoken, certain falsehoods, thus constituting criminal libel and unlawful conspiracy to defame . . ."
The last portion also was broken into several subsections listing the alleged untruths.
Encompasses all Faiths
They included so-called "falsehoods" about the aims and objects of the Church of Scientology, allegations, that Manson and any of his "family" were members, allegations the church has not been cooperating with police, and stating teachings and practices of the Church of Scientology "are connected or could be adapted to satanic black magic practices."
Mustain said the Church was one which encompassed all faiths and denominations. Members believe in God, he said, and in Jesus Christ.
He explained the Church did not condone the use of drugs and has under way a program designed to help addicts free themselves from narcotics.
Rev. Mustain noted there are about 15,000,000 members of the Church of Scientology throughout the world.
About 5,000,000 are in the United States and of those, 250,000 are in Southern California, he said.
The Church official also claimed the present "rumors" about the Church in connection with the murder cases was a part of a worldwide "libel campaign" by the "mental health front groups" which hope to stop the Scientology investigation or procedures followed in mental hospitals.
Another weapon of these groups, he claimed, is to put pressure on public officials to press charges, such as income tax evasion, against top-ranking Church officials.
The Church of Scientology founder, L. Ron Hubbard, reportedly was an object of these attacks.
He is presently living in London at the worldwide headquarters of the Church.
Turning back to "The Process," Mustain said the group apparently was founded in London four or five years ago "under somewhat mysterious circumstances."
Expelled Drug User
In a lengthy news release handed to reporters, it was claimed the Church of Scientology's first contact with "The Process" came in 1967 when a member of the group went to the London Church of Scientology and started an introductory course.
It was discovered, according to Mustain, the person was using drugs and when he refused to stop, was expelled from the Church.
The news release said the group fled England in 1968, apparently because of "police pressures," and turned up in Southern California shortly afterwards.
While in Hollywood, Mustain said, "Process" members claimed they were with the Church of Scientology when they found out officials were trying to deport them back to England.
The Church, he added, notified authorities they were not Scientology members and the group scattered throughout the United States.
Mustain said to his knowledge, none was now in the Los Angeles area.
He pointed to the similarity of "The Process" teachings with the beliefs of Manson's "family" and said the hippie leader may have run across the group when he was in the Haight-Ashbury district of San Francisco.
According to the news release, the similarities between Manson's cult and "The Process are "striking."
"The Process claims to serve and be in contact with Jehovah, Satan and Jesus Christ," it was pointed out. Manson asked his followers to call him "God," "Jesus" or "Satan."
"The Process" also wants to "end the world of man" and believes, "I own you, you own me, we can do anything with each other we wish," said the release.
Similar beliefs reportedly were held by Manson and his group.
"Other similarities," it was noted, "include solid black dress and long hair and great 'fondness' for animals and children . . ."
Manson's reported hatred of Negroes, the release reported, may have been an echo of one of "The Process" members, a "Sister Greer," who praised "a simple German house painter (Hitler) who spoke with the words of God and punished the Jews for crucifying Christ."
Members of "The Process," it was added, also dabble in hypnosis and "make use of a great deal of fear and intimidation for control and domination of its members . . . other reported tactics of Manson.
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