Scientology Accused of Torture

Will allegations from a Xenophon take down Xenu? Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd expressed "concerns" about the Church of Scientology after Senator Nick Xenophon passed along letters from former church members alleging that the organization perpetrated a range of crimes including imprisonment, forced abortion, embezzlement of church funds, physical violence, intimidation, and blackmail. The senator questioned Scientology's tax-free status during a parliamentary session, calling it "a criminal organization that hides behind its so-called beliefs." The letters containing the allegations, including one from a member who was born into Scientology, have been passed along to the police. The church denied the charges but said it would cooperate with the authorities. It said in a statement that the letters "are about as reliable as former spouses are when talking about their ex-partner."