‘I hope she’s gone’: Scientology leader apologises for comments about ‘devious’ former member
Posted On July 26, 2021
The head of Scientology’s international organisation has apologised for a series of comments he made about the former church member who died after her death.
Speaking to the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) on Wednesday, David Miscavige said he hoped “she’s gone” and apologised for comments he had made about Jenny Dearden, who was one of the “devious” members of the religion.
“I hope that she’s got gone, and I hope she never does return to the church,” he said.
Ms Dearden was the second member of Scientology to die in a church-funded care home, following the death of her former spouse.
Ms dearden died at the care home in Perth on February 6, 2014, two weeks after being sent home from a church seminar in California.
Her body was found a week later in a remote part of the country.
Ms Miscavigo had earlier been criticised by a former church leader who accused him of making derogatory comments about her.
She was in care at the facility for several years before she died.
He also denied making any comments about other former church members who had died.
The former church spokesman, Jeff Hawkins, who said he was close to Ms Deardens family, said he would not comment further on the comments.
“It’s an important issue, and it’s a topic that’s worth talking about, but the only way we can do that is through the media,” he told the ABC.
The ABC has been unable to contact Ms Dearens family.
In her statement, Ms Deanen’s sister said: “It is with a heavy heart that I am writing this.
I have always wanted to write about what happened to me but I never did.
I was unable to do so, because of the tragic circumstances.”
Ms Deenen’s family has said that she was not given a chance to speak to them prior to her death, and that she did not want to be publicly named in order to protect her privacy.
Mr Hawkins said he believed the church was “playing a dirty game” and that he would be speaking to church officials “about the situation”.
“If we’re going to continue to work with people in Scientology who have a vested interest in protecting the reputation of Scientology and the reputation for the church, then we need to speak out,” he added.
A number of people involved in Scientology have faced accusations of abuse or attempted abuse.
Some have left the organisation, while others have gone public with their experiences.
Some of those who have come forward have been accused of being “peddlers” or “conspiracy theorists” by the church.
In 2015, former Scientology leader David Miscabell was convicted of crimes including sexual assault and rape, and was jailed for life.
The church has denied any wrongdoing, but has come under fire for failing to disclose its own record of misconduct.
A separate investigation into alleged abuse within the organisation is also underway.