March 29th, 2010
11:59 PM ET

Scientology: A history of violence – Part One

Note to readers and viewers: The Anderson Cooper 360 series "Scientology: A History of Violence," which reported competing claims and denials about violence at the top of the Church of Scientology has attracted a number of complaints from senior members of the Church of Scientology (including Mr. Miscavige) and the Church of Scientology itself.

The series is now the subject of a letter of legal complaint in the United Kingdom. The complainants strongly dispute the allegations and the assertions made against them and covered in the course of the series by former members of the Church of Scientology.

AC 360°

Monday night we told you about Marty Rathbun.  He was a member of the Church of Scientology for 27 years before leaving in 2004. 

He rose through the ranks of the Sea Organization, the international management team that runs church operations world wide. 

Rathbun says he was the Inspector General and answered only to church leader David Miscavige, the same man who he says would use physical abuse against other members of the churches elite management team. 

Rathbun’s ex-wife says he’s lying, and other current Sea Organization members agree. They also say it was Rathburn who was the attacker, not Miscavige. 

They say there were a number of incidents where Rathbun would punch, choke or slap other members of the church and that because of his repeated attacks, he removed from his postion of authority at the Church. Rathbun says they are exaggerating. He admits to using physical force, but says it was Miscavige who not only created the culture of violence, he encouraged it. 

Tuesday at 10 PM/ET we hear from other former high ranking officials within the church who say they either witnessed or were physically assaulted by the church leader.  

Allegations the church strongly denies. 

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