Legal Case of the Week: Scientology

posted 26 Jun 2016, 11:32 by Rights in Russia   [ updated 26 Jun 2016, 11:51 ]
On 21 June 2016 10 people were detained as police searched the offices of the St. Petersburg’s scientology organization. Similar searches were also carried out in Moscow and St. Petersburg churches of Scientology, The Moscow Times reported. RFE/RL reported that 'law enforcement sources were quoted by several Russian news agencies on June 21 as saying the searches were part of an investigation into allegations of "illegal entrepreneurship." However, there was no official confirmation of the investigation.' 

According to The Moscow Times, in November a court in Moscow ruled that the Church of Scientology Moscow must close because it had been registered as a trademark rather than as a religious organization. Scientologists have been trying to apLast November Moscow City Court had ruled in favour of the closing down of the Moscow Scientology Church on the grounds that its religious status 'contradicts the fact that the term “Scientology” was also registered as a trademark owned by the U.S.-based Religious Technology Center.' The Church appealed to the Supreme Court on the grounds that closing it down would violate the rights of believers. Allegedly, authorities seized a number of 'illegally installed microphones and cameras' from the Moscow Church last August. In 2007 St. Petersburg City Court closed down the city's Centre for Scientology on the grounds that it was illegally gathering data about people's private lives. 

Photo: Scientology in Moscow website

'10 Arrested in St. Petersburg as Police Search Scientology Churches,' The Moscow Times, 21 June 2016
'Police Reportedly Search Scientology Church Offices In Moscow, St. Petersburg,' RFE/RL, 21 June 2016
Scientology in Moscow website