It began with tea and biscuits for constables at the police cordon after the July 7 terrorist attacks, progressed to lunches with senior officers and continues with regular invitations to gala nights and jive concerts.
The Church of Scientology appears to be involved in an effort to woo officers from the City of London police – an unlikely partnership perhaps, but one that seems to be blossoming. Details of how more than 20 officers, from constables to chief superintendents, have been invited to a series of engagements by the scientologists over the last 15 months have been revealed by a freedom of information inquiry by the Guardian.
The hospitality included guest invitations in May for two constables and a sergeant to attend the premiere of Mission Impossible 3 in Leicester Square, where they were able to rub shoulders with the best known Scientologist of all and the star of the film, Tom Cruise.
The Guardian requested details of meetings between police and scientologists after a senior officer from the City appeared as a guest speaker at the opening of the £23m Scientology centre near St Paul’s Cathedral last month.
At the lavish ceremony, Chief Superintendent Kevin Hurley, the fourth most senior officer in the force, praised the scientologists for the support they had provided after the July 7 attacks, when followers of L Ron Hubbard’s movement appeared at the police cordons of the Aldgate bomb site offering help to those involved in the emergency operation. The relationship flourished in the following months, according to the City police’s register of hospitality, which all officers are required to fill out.
Since July 7 the Church of Scientology has invited four police constables, an inspector and a chief superintendent to a charity dinner at their British headquarters, Saint Hill Manor in East Grinstead, West Sussex, where the officers received a donation of £5,000 for a City of London children’s charity.
The hospitality continued with a member of the Hubbard Foundation buying lunch for about £20 for a chief superintendent at Boisdale restaurant in Bishopsgate, central London, where the £28 set menu currently includes mini-Macsween haggis, fish or meat of the day and raspberry cranachan.[…] 1