Sunderland - Scientology tax relief (business rates) - update

Discussion in 'Scientology Property Tax' started by Anonymous, Dec 4, 2011.

  1. Anonymous Member

    This FOIA query

    has been blocked from public access for some time due to redaction problems, but is now publicly available.

    Includes the Scientology application for for rates relief in Sunderland (on charitable grounds - although the cult is barred from registering as a UK charity).

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  2. Anonymous Member


    Note that like the London application it again calls COSRECI a 'South Australian Charity'
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  3. Anonymous Member

    Shouldn't it be possible to nail them on blatant lying?
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  4. Possibly.

    As a solicitor, Hodkin has a Code that he has to keep to.

    Research needed on what that code consists of (i.e. what bit of it he breaches if he lies on behalf of a client) and what the complaints process is.
  5. Anonymous Member

    Lying cult members tell lies
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  6. Sponge Member

    Complaints procedures tend to be orientated towards those of a client against a solicitor or other legal services body who is/was providing them with legal services. Although, at first glance, the Legal Ombudsman doesn't appear to rule out complaints from anyone. However it is more to do with the actual service provided rather than a random person going: "zoomg I saw a solicitor do lies!!!111!! Ban him nao!!!!"
    Then there is the self-regulatory bodies.
    e.g Solicitors Regulation Authority.

    It then goes on about codes of practice which are more client complaint based.

    They do have enforcement powers, as follows:
    Good luck with that, but I think you'll be beating your head against a brick wall more than dealing with the persistent ignorance at Sunderland Council.

    Personally I think you'd be better off calling out that moron at Sunderland council, as well as going above his head, to show again that the information on the form is lies and obfuscation.


    a) COSRECI is not only NOT a South Australian charity it is not even registered with their regulatory bodies. Claims of being set up for charitable purposes in its incorporation docs is NOT good enough, especially when it is nothing but a corporate trust in name and with no function other than to be used in the UK to create and apparency that it does charitable works of the kind that the Charities Commission of England and Wales ruled that it doesn't actually do.
    Sunderland council have done no research into this, they have taken scientology's lies as fact and refused to act on evidence given.

    b) Donations/Prices/Free services. Sunderland council have done absolutely no verification to determine whether scientology's services are mostly free or mostly come at a price. Suggest Giving Sunderland council a copy of scientology's "Bridge to total freedom" chart, as well as listing all the services on it in plan text, and asking Sunderland council the rhetorical question: which of those scientology services are free. Not "minimum donation", "exchange for time" or any other wishy washy version of "free-ish" but actually free, as in walking into the Sunderland org and getting something for free.
    Of course Sunderland council will not be able to tell you becase they didn't ask scientology to verifiy. They just believed them.

    If you keep getting stonewalled then there is the Local Government Ombudsman.
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  7. Anonymous Member

    Tried it in relation to City of London. LGO declined to investigate.

    The kind of 'harm' they investigate is the 'harm to individuals' kind, rather than the 'misuse of taxpayers money' kind.
  8. Sponge Member

    I get what you're saying. You have to gear it towards a complaint about the procedure of the council's handling of your complaint. I'm not under the illusion that it is a final solution but it is one avenue whilst badgering on at the chief fuckwit at the council. You can bet your life that the council would be quick to react to information about an individual who was cheating them out of five quids worth of council tax benefits yet here they are actively not investigating reports of fraud over someones application for the business version of council tax (backdated and worth thousands). Councils have a benefits fraud investigatory team yet for business rates relief (which is another form of benefit) it seems to be down to one person. I can't quite decide whether their actions (or lack of action) is because they have too many discretionary powers or not enough.
    Based on what I said above, if you ask rhetorical questions of the council about scientology's "mostly free" services and they don't know then they haven't done their homework, especially if you can then provide them with a resonably good list of what is and what is not free (and under what curcumstances some things *might* be "free").

    They can bring this up at council meetings.
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  9. Anonymous Member

    I suspect it's because they don't pay the bill for Mandatory Relief - that's made up from national taxpayers' funds.

    So if they grant the relief then they pay nothing, if they deny it they risk getting sued by the clams.
  10. Sponge Member

    AFAIK, Sunderland has not revealed any legal worries in FOI dox. There is obviously an underlying question "what if" if they've been seeking advice from other councils but it doesn't explain why they might conclude, real or tacit, to have the same worries as London but completely ignore the total lack of cult legal action in those areas where relief was applied for and rejected (St.Hill Manor for one very large example). These are huge gaps in logic.
  11. Anonymous Member

    Yeah... the question is, what now?

    Judicial review?
  12. RolandRB Member

    No, that won't work. There has got to be an aggrieved party for that and saying there is a lot of us who have all lost a penny won't get us far.
  13. RolandRB Member

    It's a local authority. What do you expect? If they didn't do something stupid like that then they would be spending millions on messing up one way systems and putting in new roundabouts.
  14. Sponge Member

    Due dilligence. Nothing more.

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  15. RolandRB Member

    I suppose somebody could write into Sunderland council and point out that COSRECI is not a charity anywhere except in name and ask them how they ensure on an ongoing basis that the tax relief given them benefits the public in a proportionate way.
  16. jensting Member

    Yay :)

    Well, actually, I have to say he's probably telling the truth, about the services.

    Now, as to the auditing and the rundowns and the courses and the sec checks etc etc, he never said a word about those...

    Best Regards

  17. But doesn't the Ron Technical Dictionary define "services" as any sort of cult training?

    Oh, wait... This is Scientology; Words mean whatever you lie about them meaning!
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  18. RolandRB Member
  19. Fast Pat Member

    I work for a Charity (a proper one!) in Sunderland that after fourteen years of trying to get the discretionary relief by using the COS arguments from the whatdotheyknow site has finally convinced Sunderland to give us the relief, they have however only allowed it for last year and this - so at least some good has come out of all your hard work and campaining!

    Within the information on the whatdotheyknow site is an email from Hodkin (page 206) asking for the repayment of all sums paid "without time limit" and refering to the City of Westminster doing just this - does anyone know how the City of Sunderland responded? Did they "only" get £12,599 back or did they get back everything they had ever paid?
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  20. Anonymous Member

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