An Embassy officer discussed the situation with Miss M.E. Millson, a senior official of the Department of Immigration and Nationality of the Home Office, who has been following the matter for some two years. She stated that the British Government is most reluctant to act against the organization itself or to take legal action against any of its leaders for fear of being accused of interfering with the freedom of religion. She noted that Scientology sometimes refers to itself as a school and sometimes as a church in an obvious effort to acquire such untouchability. She said the Government hopes that the leaders will become so discouraged by immigration difficulties as to retreat from their British base. Miss Millson expressed her personal conviction, however, that Scientology has gained such a foothold in the United Kingdom and acquired so many British proponents that legal action against the organization itself,which would have to be preceded by new legislative authority, will eventually prove necessary. British authorities have several times referred to the possibility that personal information obtained from “students” under hypnosis and other treatment could be used for blackmail and other coercive purposes, but Miss Millson stated that no such cases are actually known.
File/Ref. No.: 62-94080
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