Skip to main content

Scientology: How heirs lost a $400 million inheritance

How Scientology heirs lost a $400 million inheritance

[October 20, 1998]

A director of FACTNet recently spent 20 hours interviewing former high-level Scientology cult member, Jesse Prince . Jesse was second in command of all Scientology's operations worldwide. In these conversations, Jesse Prince disclosed information never previously revealed regarding his former boss, Scientology's current leader David Miscavige.

One of the issues Jesse discussed was the strategy employed by David Miscavige to swindle the heirs of L. Ron Hubbard out of an inheritance worth $400 million, or more. Soon after L. Ron Hubbard's death, Miscavige approached Hubbard's elderly widow, Mary Sue Hubbard, during her recovery from lung cancer surgery, as well as the Hubbard children. Mary Sue Hubbard was L. Ron's third wife, with whom he had children Diana, Quentin (deceased), Suzette, and Arthur. Following is an excerpt from FACTNet's ["F"] interview with Jesse Prince ["J"]:

J: Now after [L. Ron Hubbard] passed, I was there when Mary Sue Hubbard was made to sign an agreement -- I do believe it was $100,000 -- to relinquish any kind of claim on the copyrights, or trademarks, or bank accounts, or anything to do with the Scientology fortune. I was part of a 12 or 17-man team of people that just invaded her house, and was all a pretty cordial affair. She didn't want to sign the damn thing. Lawyers were there, David Miscavige started screaming, "You are going to sign it!"

F: He was screaming at her, "You're going to sign this document"?

J: We were all there, browbeating her 

F: 12 to 17 people? 

J: Yeah, all in Sea Org uniforms. All in cars everywhere, just going in there and overwhelming this poor little old lady. 

F: Would you say that you were an intimidating presence? 

J: Beyond any question. 

F: Would you say that Mary Sue Hubbard was coerced into signing an agreement? 

J: It s beyond any question. As well as Arthur, I was there when he signed it too. He got $50,000. 

F: He got $50,000. Did they have their own lawyers there who looked at the documents? 

J: No, no. They had no representation. All the Scientology lawyers were there, and they would just sit down, this is what the lawyers say, "sign here." 

F: Were they allowed to read the documents? 

J: Yeah, but I don t think they knew what they were reading. 

F: So the Scientology lawyers were there. Did they act like they were representing Mary Sue Hubbard or Arthur in advising them in any legal way at all on the document? 

J: No. 

F: What lawyers were there? 

J: I believe Larry Heller. 

F: Anyone else? 

J: Not that I specifically recall, but that doesn t mean that no one was there. 

F: So, Larry Heller was there in this incredibly coercive environment. Were these men, these 12 to 17 people, in Sea Org uniforms? 

J: All men, except Vicky Aznaran. 

F: Were they big men? 

J: Big men. Lyman, Norman, Marty, me. 

F: Was there any kind of spoken or unspoken threat that if she didn't sign this document there would be trouble for her or her family? 

J: Trouble for her, yes. 

F: What was said? 

J: Going to get sec checked, going to get auditing, going to get this, ethics, whatever. She blew up, she said, "No, I m going to sec check you to find out what the hell you re trying to do to me." 

F: So she was threatened with a security check, and ethics, which meant that she would have to work through conditions and do all kinds of menial, manual labor? 

J: No, just have someone sitting with her in her house. She wasn't very functional. She had a couple of Scientologists who watched her every move and reported to David Miscavige every day about her. 

F: They lived in her house? 

J: They lived in her house and reported on her every single day. 

F: They were writing reports on her condition? 

J: Every single day. 

F: Was she sickly? 

J: Very sickly, fragile woman. 

F: Was she on medication? 

J: No, I do not believe that was allowed. 

F: So, she was sick, she had Scientology people spying on her before these 12 to 17 people came. 

J: During and after. It was all set up. They told what she did every moment of the day. We took her to the mall today, she bought this today. Neville was reporting to David Miscavige every day. 

F: Personally? 

J: Personally. 

F: Were they worried that Mary Sue Hubbard would? What were they worried about? 

J: That she wouldn't sign exactly what they wanted her to sign. 

F: So, she had no choice? 

J: None. 

F: 12 to 17 large men in uniforms standing around her? 

J: ...telling her she's got to do it. 

F: Other people were telling her to sign it? 

J: The people were telling her to sign it was Norman Starkey, David Miscavige, the attorney just handing it to her telling her this is the release form, or whatever. I never said a word when I was there, Vicky never said a word, I don't think Marty spoke to her. 

F: Why were 12 to 17 people in uniform necessary? 

J: Because David Miscavige said we need to go in there. Mark Jaegar was there. David Miscavige said we need to go in there and show a unified group of people from the church that we're running things and it's got nothing to do with her and she is not entitled to anything. 

F: Did he say that? 

J: Yes. I'm paraphrasing pretty much what he said. David Miscavige said she is lucky to get what she's getting. Ray Mithoff was there. 

F: Was he going to convince her that she wasn't entitled to anything? 

J: Yeah. And, I'll tell you the moment when she actually relinquished and signed the document, they pulled out their ace in the hole. She was actually kind of sad that he [her husband, L. Ron Hubbard] died, because they had been separated and hadn't talked for a long time. Actually, they hadn't been talking that much since she had gotten out of jail. She asked Ray Mithoff with tears in his eyes if he had said anything, or asked about her before he passed. He said, "No, he didn't mention your name." At which point after the meeting he reported with glee how he knew that had really got to her, just to know that she's a piece of shit that he never said anything. At that she bowed her head and they just stuck the papers underneath, like this, and she started signing. 

F: She had no representation. How much time was she given to think and read, and think about whether she wanted to sign and waive her whole inheritance, her children's inheritance. 

J: A couple hours. 

F: Alone, she was left alone? 

J: No, never alone. We stayed there for 2 hours. 

F: For 2 hours you, David Miscavige? 

J: Norman Starkey... 

F: ?just kept talking at her, they screamed? 

J: they screamed. 

F: Loud? 

J: You could hear it outside with the door closed. 

F: Screaming at her to sign this document. 

J: And telling her, "We're going to sec check you, and you're out of ethics" and all of this. 

F: They threatened her with all these punishments in Scientology? 

J: Right. 

F: And the lawyer sat there and watched this. 

J: Right. 

F: Arthur went through the same thing? 

J: He was much more submissive because he had been gotten to earlier. He escaped, ran away from the church, went to Hawaii. They had PIs track him down. He just wanted to be away. 

F: What do you mean "gotten to earlier"? 

J: Like I say, he wanted nothing to do with Scientology any more, nothing to do with the Sea Org. He just wanted to be a normal person. He escaped, dyed his hair black, assumed names, all this stuff. Ended up in Hawaii, just kicking around, having a good time. They found him, escorted him back. 

F: They sent PIs or someone out to find him? 

J: PIs, different church members, and brought him to me. 

F: Physically? 

J: Physically, brought him to me. 

F: Was it with his approval, or was he kidnapped from Hawaii? 

J: I think his brain was scattered because they had coerced him all along the way, and now this was his thing. 

F: So they brought him to you, why? 

J: To audit [Auditing is Scientology's form of psychotherapy]. 

F: To audit. Why do you think he was gotten to sign this thing earlier before Mary Sue, what made you think he was going to go along? 

J: Because I think his sister, his two sisters signed it, willingly signed it. They were, probably were, used to coerce him to sign it. Diana and Suzette, who were still both in the Sea Org. 

F: How much did Diana and Suzette get? 

J: I think they got $50,000. 

F: $50,000. Were they, did they have attorneys that represented them? 

J: Like I say, at no point did I ever see them having any attorneys. 

F: They had no legal counsel? 

J: No. Intimidation. 

F: This is for Arthur and Mary Sue. What do you think, do you think that Suzette and Diana had attorneys? 

J: I can only speculate on that, Lawrence, and I think the answer is no. The other two didn't, what the hell makes them special? 

F: Do you think anybody said to them that because they were the family and the heirs that they had complete rights to all these assets? 

J: No. Quite to the contrary. I'll tell you what they were told by David Miscavige because I heard these words come out of his mouth: "Everything that L. Ron Hubbard did, he did for the church. We are the church, not you. Therefore everything is staying right here with us." That's the way it went. 

F: Did the lawyer ever say anything to them about their community property or state inheritance rights as the surviving family? 

J: Silent. 

F: Never said anything about a state law or anything like that? 

J: No. 

F: They did everything? Did David ever, or Starkey ever? 

J: No, you've got to me, because this gets frustrating. I told you exactly what happened. Raymond [Ray Mithoff] up and dropped the bomb on her that he [L. Ron Hubbard] didn't care about her, she hung her head and just started signing whatever they stuck under her hand. 

F: Trust me on these questions, there's a reason for them. We'll talk about it when we're done. Did anyone tell her that the law said that? did anyone imply that the law was not on her side? 

J: No. 

F: So they just simply said, we own this because Hubbard did it for us, sign the document, with 12 to 17 men in uniform standing around her an intimidating presence, screaming at her. 

J: No, everybody wasn't?. 

F: Just Miscavige. 

J: Norman and Miscavige. He introduced us, he said, these are the people in RTC, they do this, they're running things, not you, not the family. Here's international management, Mark Jaeger, he's running things, not you. Here's all the services, you're not part of this. 

F: Do you think the Hubbard family had any idea that his assets were worth from $100 to $400 million? 

J: No. 

F: Do you think that them receiving $50,000 each and Mary Sue receiving $100,000 for the estate of L. Ron Hubbard, do you think they would have done that if they had legal counsel, had there not been people standing in their room 12-17 men, women, in uniform, and being screamed at? Do you think they would have done that after careful selection? 

J: I'll say this, the answer is obvious. David Miscavige had a smile on his face for nearly a week after he pulled that off. I mean he was happy, happy, happy. 

F: He just made $400,000,000. 

J: Or more. I think it's a lot more than that.

[End of interview excerpt]

Those unfamiliar with cults -- particularly one as destructive as Scientology would probably wonder how anyone could let someone cheat them out of an inheritance worth $400 million or more. The explanation is in cults' use of mind control and intimidation tactics. L. Ron Hubbard's family suffers the same control as does every other family under cult domination. Through such control David Miscavige obtained the rights to the copyrights and trademarks that he is now using to censor free speech on the Internet.

Premium Drupal Themes by Adaptivethemes
escort marseille