Subject: CAN closes doors
From: email@example.com (Don Krieger)
Date: 26 Jun 1996 12:42:23 GMT
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On June 21, CAN officially closed its office in Chicago after declaring
Chapter 7 bankruptcy. If anyone was on the mailing list, you should know
that this list can now be sold or given away to the highest bidder. If this
concerns you, I suggest you write to the Chapter 7 trustee and state in the
letter that when you gave your name and address to CAN it was with the
understanding that it would be kept strictly confidential. Indicate that if
you find that your name and address have been sold you will take legal
action. If the Trustee gets enough mail of this kind, it is possible that
the decision will be made not to sell or give away the mailing list.
The address of the Trustee is:
Chapter 7 Trustee for Debtor
Cult Awareness Network, Inc.
834 N. Forest Avenue
Oak Park, IL 60302
Here is the press release which explains what occurred in more detail:
Date: June 21, 1996
For Immediate Release
Cult Awareness Network Files Chapter Seven Bankruptcy/Ceases Operations
The Cult Awareness Network, an internationally recognized non-profit
which has provided information to the public on the cult problem,
filed a motion earlier this week to begin Chapter Seven Bankruptcy
The motion, which was approved by Judge Barliett of the United States
Bankruptcy Court for the Northern District of Illinois, begins a
process, under the court's protection, of divesting CAN of its assets.
CAN had originally entered a Chapter 11 Bankruptcy last October,
hoping to develop a reorganization plan that would permit it to
continue to operate in the face of a crippling damage award assessed
against it in civil litigation brought in a federal case in the state
of Washington by plaintiff Jason Scott.
CAN filed its reorganization plan, but in the face of vigorous
opposition to the plan raised by Scott's attorney, the plan was not
approved by the Bankruptcy Court, clearing the way for Scott to begin
collection proceedings unless CAN entered the Chapter Seven.
The Scott case is on appeal in the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals.
CAN's attorney, Paul Lawrence of the Seattle firm of Preston, Gates
and Ellis, expects the appellate brief for CAN to be filed by late
August. Lawrence is the President of the Washington State American
Civil Liberties Union. Preston, Gates and Ellis is representing CAN
Ironically, CAN has also filed a petition to the Illinois Supreme
Court asking the high court to review a case dismissed by the Circuit
Court of Cook County which names Scott's attorney, Kendrick Moxon, his
partner Timothy Bowles, and the Church of Scientology International as
defendants for bringing multiple cases in an attempt to destroy CAN
financially with litigation. The Chicago firm of Mayer, Brown & Platt
are representing CAN pro bono in that matter.
The Chapter Seven bankruptcy halts two other cases against CAN, one
in Superior Court for the County of Los Angeles brought by
Scientologist Robert Lippman, and the other brought by Landmark
Education Corporation in the Circuit Court of Illinois. Landmark, a
for-profit organization, has sued CAN, its president, William Rehling,
and Cynthia Kisser, its executive director. The Landmark cases
continue against Rehling and Kisser.
Court-ordered arbitration in the Lippman case has determined
Lippman's claim as meritless. In the Landmark case, Landmark has
refused to file a proof of cost establishing it has actually suffered
any damages because of CAN, Rehling or Kisser's actions, publications
or statements concerning the controversial organization's reputation
As part of the Chapter Seven proceedings CAN will recommend to the
Chapter 7 Trustee that it offer for sale the right to collect
judgments for tens of thousands of dollars in costs awarded to CAN
against several Scientologists in past cases terminated in CAN's favor
in California and Illinois. Persons interested in details about such a
sale should contact the Chapter 7 Trustee, whose name is available
through CAN's bankruptcy attorney Benjamin Hyink of Hyink &
Scannichio, Chtd. in Chicago at 312-782-8274 or Cynthia Kisser.
Of particular concern to CAN is what will happen to its archives of
information on the cult issue and its confidential records of callers
and donors. Without the resources to address constitutional and public
interest issues to safeguard these documents, CAN is concerned its
critics will try to acquire and destroy the archives and subject the
donors to harassment or intimidation. At this point public interest
organizations will need to contact the Chapter 7 Trustee to have these
issues addressed because CAN has no resources to present these issues.
CAN is hopeful that it will not be forced to close permanently before
its appeal on the Scott case is heard, but is realistic that the
appeal may not be ruled upon in time to prevent its demise. CAN
suspended daily operations operations today.
"We've been backed into this corner," said Kisser, "simply because of
the massive amount of litigation we have had to face in the
approximately 50 cases brought by Scientologists against us since
1991. If you get sued 50 times over four years the odds are that
you're going to suffer losses at some point. What has happened is
wrong. The record is clear on this for anyone who takes the time to
review what's been laid down in the courts."
End of Press Release
Don Krieger firstname.lastname@example.org http://www.lightlink.com/dkrieger/
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