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Spies 'upset' Scientology executive, trial told

Title: Spies 'upset' Scientology executive, trial told
Date: Saturday, 30 May 1992
Publisher: Toronto Star (Canada)
Author: Peter Small
Main source:

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A top Church of Scientology executive once married to founder L. Ron Hubbard's daughter says he had no idea about an espionage and dirty tricks campaign conducted by the church.

At the trial of the Church of Scientology of Toronto and five of its members yesterday, Jonathan Horwich, 47, of Los Angeles testified he was "very upset" and "shocked" when first informed of the church's campaign.

The Toronto defendants face criminal breach of trust charges in connection with agents infiltrating the RCMP, the OPP, Metro police and the provincial attorney-general's office between April, 1974, and November, 1976.

Horwich married Hubbard's daughter Diana and was on board the former science-fiction writer's floating headquarters in the early 1970s.

Mary Sue Hubbard — the late founder's wife and head of the clandestine organization allegedly responsible for the church's crimes — never discussed what she did with him, Horwich told the jury trial.

Although Horwich admitted to prosecutor James Stewart the Guardian's Office was a legitimate branch of the church dealing with public relations, tax matters and information gathering, "they were always separate, unapproachable, difficult to deal with."

Horwich — in charge of training church executives aboard the yacht in the early '70s — taught Bryan Levman, who would later oversee a series of covert intelligence operations aimed at attacking Scientology's enemies in his role as deputy guardian for Canada, court has heard.

Levman has told the court he left the yacht with a new title and a mandate from L. Ron Hubbard that he believed allowed him to infiltrate police agencies and steal government files.

Yesterday, Horwich testified that in 1979, he was appointed as a liaison between the main church and the Guardian's Office, struggling to sort out conflicts between the two branches.

The Guardian's Office would raid staff from local churches, leaving those organizations "floundering," and demand its allotted budget even when the church was short of cash, Horwich said.

"I was extremely concerned . . . about the attitude of the Guardian's Office toward the church."

At first, when some branches were raided by the U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation in 1977, and a flurry of lawsuits followed, he believed the Guardian's Office's explanation that they were the victims of a government plot, he said.

But his attitude changed to shock when he was shown a Guardian's Office document called "Operation Freakout" — outlining a harassment project — in 1981, he said.

The trial continues before Mr. Justice James Southey.

Copyright 1992 Toronto Star, All Rights Reserved.