Scientology Crime Syndicate

On 30/Dec/99, Mr. Arnie Lerma discovered that the Scientology cult had forged photographs putatively taken to show the number of cult followers that attended their gathering at the L. A. Sports Arena on 28/Dec/99.

This web page covers that discovery by offering extracts from the IRC chat logs from the #scientologyLIES channel on EFFNet, and by offering a link to the Washington Post article which covered the story four days later. (There is a link to the Washington Post article as well as a photograph of the printed newspaper article which is 172K and shows the forged photograph as well as an extract from the forged photograph blown up to show the replication of cult followers the cult was trying to pull.)

The Washington Post ran an article about this attempted deception and the text of that article can be found here at: Washington Post On-Line Article. That's "The Reliable Source" article titled "Scientology's Funny Photos."

Or, if you would like to read a photograph of the Washington Post's article which was printed and distributed around the United States, you can click here: Inflated Follower Count

Session Start: Thu Dec 30 21:55:37 1999
[21:55] *** Now talking in #scientologyLIES

[22:01] <StilNoOTs> hey. they fucked with. these I found two of
                    the same face
[22:02] <StilNoOTs> yes. goto bottom center. zoom in. wait. convert
                    this piece of shit to .bmp it turns into 26 megs
[22:02] <Bunnyann>  hell, they take forever to load.
[22:02] <Vishnu>    really arnie???????!!!!!!!
[22:02] <StilNoOTs> theres a whole bunch opf people drawn in. pasted
                    twice!. I was looking at this
[22:03] <Vishnu>    neato!
[22:03] <StilNoOTs> and the shadows wernt right
[22:03] <jWog>      hehehe, i love it.
[22:03] <StilNoOTs> we gottah get media to get these from their site
[22:03] <jWog>      let's make sure first!!!
[22:03] <StilNoOTs> they will be able to say we doctored them. go to
                    230% zoom on event3ls. look along bottom. there
                    is face turned around lookin at camera. then look
                    up a couple rows and there is the same guy. then
                    you will see a whole row pasted in sloppyly. oh
                    man whole segment repeat!
[22:05] <Damoclese> Good grief.  Give it to the media.
[22:06] <StilNoOTs> YES YES.  they are fuqued.
[22:07] <StilNoOTs> oh this is rich. OH MY GAWD. they drew hair on one
                    guy so the repeat wouldnt look the same! Oh man
                    they did it everywhere
[22:08] <Vishnu>    this is getting funny
[22:09] <Damoclese> Does anybody know what Arnie's talking about?
[22:09] <merk>      where are the photos ?
[22:09] <Shukaido2> What photos?
[22:10] <Vishnu>    yes, he talking about the clam big win at the event
                    today photos.
[22:10] <merk>      where are they ?
[22:11] <Bunnyann>  www.freedommag.org
[22:11] <StilNoOTs> please keep on this channel now. till other folks
                    get these. they will shut down the site. Yes but
[22:11] <Shukaido2> Where are the photos, please?
[22:11] <Bunnyann>  damo, wiggie actually gave me the cite ref, please
                    keep that quiet.
[22:11] <StilNoOTs> http://www.freedommag.org
[22:15] <Shukaido2> What did they edit out, I wonder.
[22:15] <StilNoOTs> its easy to see ALL ALONMG THE BOTTOM. there is
                    even a paste crease visible with three of the
                    same heads. they copied the crowd. painted in some
                    hair. then pasted segements next to each other.
                    oh man
[22:16] <Damoclese> arnie: We're still trying to find the damn thing.
                    Press ready photographs?
[22:20] <StilNoOTs> yes
[22:21] <Damoclese> Here it is.
[22:22] <StilNoOTs> as you look across bottom towards bottom right
                    these a sloppy paste line. theres a. lemmie look
                    at other one I got. i wonder if the pastes are
                    different in different shots... they are toast
[22:22] <Damoclese> I have to close mIRC.
[22:22] *** Disconnected

Session Start: Thu Dec 30 22:26:07 1999
[22:26] *** Now talking in #scientologyLIES

[22:28] <merk>      the pillars around LRH's picture on wall also
                    has paste marks
[22:31] <Damoclese> Every press agency that received this photograph
                    would _love_ to run an exposure on the fact that
                    it's doctored to triple the number of followers
                    that attended.
[22:34] <StilNoOTs> do you guys think id be good idea to STFU until
                    the media actually downloads these monsters? I
                    mean tell the media folks but STFU on ars. the
                    clams will pull them
[22:35] <Damoclese> Yes, abolsutely say nothing.
[22:35] <Bunnyann>  we cannot say antyhing publically yet, until they
                    are verified.
[22:35] <jWog>      arnie, i agree! let the media analyse these puppies
                    and break the story. then if the media doesn't
                    break the doctored photos story, you can.
[22:37] <merk>      they are definately edited
[22:37] <jWog>      Damoclese, right... but arnie or someone needs
                    to point it out to them.
[22:37] <merk>      scieno's will probably say that they did that to
                    paste several pictures together to get it all in
                    one shot
[22:39] <jWog>      Arnie could do zoomed in shots for the pres to
                    show what to look for and let them download and
                    confirm it themsleves from the Freedom site.
[22:39] <StilNoOTs> thats reaching. and the shadows dont look right
                    in te stands the im in an industrial imnage editor
                    micrographix Picture Publisher
[22:41] <StilNoOTs> oh yeah. they cant say they pasted wrong. they
                    drew hair on one guy
[22:42] <Damoclese> Arnie: If we were to examine their other
                    photographs, I bet we would see much the same
[22:42] <StilNoOTs> ok Im gonna web a piece of this
[22:42] <Damoclese> arnie: That would help.
[22:42] <StilNoOTs> http://www.lermanet.com/ScientologyLIES.jpg
                    [ but its not there yet wait ]
[22:43] <jWog>      Does anyone know if any ppl at the event got
                    to take photos or was it no cameras allowed
[22:43] <Bunnyann>  well, after merk plays with all this and we
                    have evidence, we can do something. arnie, and
                    just think, its thanks to wiggie giving me the
                    url tonight we have this already.
[22:44] <merk>      they gave them out as press releases... so
                    that's meant for public consumtion I would
                    believe... correct me if I am wrong
[22:44] <jWog>      i would like to see our spy photos of the Event.
[22:44] <StilNoOTs> ok guys its there. check out the hair they drew
[22:45] <Vishnu>    guy with three arms???!!
[22:46] <StilNoOTs> yall see that?
[22:47] <Vishnu>    merk says a guy with 3 arms.
[22:48] <merk>      well, sorta... one of his arms is shifted pretty
[22:49] <StilNoOTs> see guy center right looking left clapping? bald?
[22:49] <StilNoOTs> look down and left and there he is again with hair
[22:50] <StilNoOTs> bihind him they blurred a spot so you wouldnt
                    notice. they two folks in light colores heads,
                    they melt together.  Ok wait.  lemmi draw a line
[22:51] <StilNoOTs> two lines through same points and you will see
[22:52] <Damoclese> I've got better equipment...  I'm gmoving the
                    JPG to my NT box with better video.
[22:54] <merk>      sonofabitch... I see doubles in many places
[22:54] <Damoclese> YEEEHAA!!  Good fucking grief!  You are absolutely
                    fucking right, ARNIE!  <ROFL!> Fucking A!!!
[22:55] <merk>      you can see the chick with the white/pink glowing
                    shirt/whatever... it's duplicated above right
[22:55] <merk>      those bastards are BUSTED
[22:57] <Bunnyann>  yes, and th man in the black suit, with the blue
                    shirt, that has been doctored too.
[22:57] <Damoclese> They changed people's hair color, too.
[22:57] <merk>      like I said, there are lots of duplicates...
                    arnie... follow your bottom line to the left of
                    the picture... it's all duplicated
[22:57] <Bunnyann>  damo, yes, they did.  the man in the grey suit
                    with blue shirt for one.
[22:57] <merk>      yup.. painted hair on a few and changed others
[22:58] <Damoclese> <rofl!> Man, I _love_ this cult!
[22:58] <StilNoOTs> I mean they cant say they stitched pics togetehr
                    cause it was a wide shot. then why paint hair?
                    unless its to LIE
[22:58] <merk>      it's a lie. and they did this to make it media
                    proof shots ? shit, I could edit better than that!
[22:59] <StilNoOTs> yes they are into HI RES High Quality. they gave
                    us 8 meg shots
[23:01] <Bunnyann>  the supreme irony here is wiggie gave me the
                    site info.  poor wiggie.
[23:01] <Damoclese> xxxxx: The cult put these photographs into a
                    section specifically designated for the media --
                    which means they've distributed the photograph
                    to the media for publication in local papers.
[23:01] <StilNoOTs> right? why this fanfare? press photos? they are
                    trtying to impress US. overhwelm us
[23:02] <Damoclese> Now we know where their 8 million followers are.
[23:02] <StilNoOTs> From the Folks That Brought you Picket Chicken
[23:03] <jWog>      Arnie, do you see many other spots that they
                    did this on the photo?
[23:03] <BhaalSP>   their happy people reside inside of a paint
[23:05] <StilNoOTs> $cientology ushers in the millenium with FRAUD
[23:06] <Damoclese> merk: That's cool.  I would expect themn to
                    have done this many times before.
[23:06] <StilNoOTs> its in event1s too. balcony left
[23:08] <BhaalSP>   what event is this pic supposed to be of..
                    their deal earlier this week?
[23:09] <Damoclese> bha: Yes, yesterday, in fact.
[23:09] <merk>      I'm sure they will see my system at work pulling
                    it all down too. in their logs
[23:09] <Damoclese> merk: Then they'll know they're busted.
[23:12] <Bunnyann>  well guys, i've done my part in this one.  i
                    dealt with wiggie for hours for this.  have fun.
                    i'm going to bed.
[23:20] <Damoclese> merk: I like the new hair they put on people
                    and what appears to be a new hat for one guy.
[23:20] <merk>      Damoclese: yes, along with the EDITING FRAUD
                    pictures with circles and lines in it to show
                    the fraud
[23:21] <StilNoOTs> wheres the row of people facing the wronmg way?
[23:22] <merk>      bottom left... and when you scroll right... you
                    see they kinda mold in with people that are tiny
                    for that to happen right, there would need to
                    be some kind of wall there, or barrier to
                    diffrentiate the people close and up to those
                    way down. instead, it just runs together
[23:24] <merk>      arnie, GREAT find!
[23:25] <xxxxx>     God, if you blow it up like 800 percent you can
                    see the seems.
[23:25] <StilNoOTs> I never imagined they would dare do this
[23:27] <Damoclese> ALL: The cult is going to pull the photograph
                    once news gets out that the good guys have all
                    the dirt.
[23:27] <use>       these pics are for the troops, orgs and missions....
                    internal pr.....
[23:29] <Damoclese> use: I'm not so sure...  This is going to be
                    published in "Freedom" magazine.  It's designated
                    as "media ready."  That sounds like a press
                    release to local newspapers.  My assumption.
[23:31] <use>       yeah damo: but freedom is basically only read
                    by churchies.... keeps the OSA slaves fired up....
                    makes them feel like they are getting recognised
[23:31] <Damoclese> use: It looks like one can lie like a Hubbard
                    in America and there's no laws against it.
[23:31] <use>       In 30 years I have seen very very few Freedom
                    articles in the media
[23:33] <merk>      looks like they hired some guy that just bought
                    his editing program the day before, and used
                    the manual to help him edit that one
[23:33] <Damoclese> Will they admit they own it by claiming copyright
                    violation if it's replicated elsewhere by critics,
                    I wonder?  Or will they demand it's doctored
                    (after their remove the original from their web
                    site) and claim it doesn't belong to them, I
[23:34] <xxxxx>     Oh they'll say we did it, of course.
[23:34] <Damoclese> Maybe we can get Rinder to offer some "reasonable
[23:34] <Damoclese> xxxxx: After removing it, yep, from their web
[23:38] <xxxxx>     You see, the people who were THERE for real will
                    see the pictures, and know what liars they are
[23:58] <Damoclese> They put hair on a lot of people.  And changed
                    the color on hair and clothes.
[00:00] <Damoclese> mek: At least they _tried_ to "make it go right."
                    They shifted the segments rather than put them
                    side-by-side.  That would have been easier to
[00:01] <Meklar>    Dam:Yeah
[00:04] <Damoclese> I'm hungry.  Bagel time.
[00:07] <Meklar>    I'm off to bed, night all
[00:07] <StilNoOTs> nite mek

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