"Inside Scientology" is a multi-part investigative series by the Tampa Bay Times. Dating back to 2009, the reports shed unprecedented light on the inner workings of the secretive church, which has its spiritual headquarters in Clearwater.
The multimedia presentations feature first-hand accounts from Scientologists, former Scientologists and many others, as well as documents, recordings and video interviews.
CLEARWATER — Scientology has long set its practices apart from other tax-exempt religions by charging members for auditing sessions and courses required to advance through the faith.
CLEARWATER — Scientology leader David Miscavige on Tuesday revealed privately to City Council members the church's downtown redevelopment strategy, which focuses on recruiting businesses to Cleveland Street and bankrolling a facade overhaul for the main thoroughfare rather than controlling the entire downtown …
CLEARWATER — The City Council's vote scheduled for Thursday on whether to buy a 1.4-acre downtown lot coveted by the Church of Scientology has been delayed a month because it wasn't properly advertised.
CLEARWATER — It's not unusual for an elected official to venture into the community to meet with a citizen, but a major organization summoning each city council member out from City Hall to lobby a single issue? That almost never happens.
CLEARWATER — One afternoon in late October, City Manager Bill Horne was invited to the Fort Harrison Hotel where Church of Scientology leader David Miscavige shared details about the church's long-rumored retail strategy.
The Church of Scientology is maneuvering to control all downtown real estate to create a master retail district that will operate under its management and oversight.
CLEARWATER — In three decades as the Church of Scientology's leader, only one time has David Miscavige ever held formal meetings with all five City Council members.
It says in Chapter 36 that the Church of Scientology is great for families.
CLEARWATER — The latest downtown revitalization plan unveiled this week calls for walkable green spaces and a bustling town square peppered with outdoor dining and retail shops to fill the vacant storefronts.
CLEARWATER — The sun was about to set on a July evening in 2013 when Betsy Steg heard a knock at the door.
CLEARWATER — The same, desperate plea Phil and Willie Jones plastered across a billboard in Los Angeles is scheduled to go up on East Bay Drive next week.
CLEARWATER — Scientology leader David Miscavige has met one-on-one with each City Council member to discuss a key piece of waterfront land — the first gesture of its kind in the decades-long struggle between the Church of Scientology and the city over downtown real estate.
The father of Scientology leader David Miscavige issued a blistering indictment of the church he introduced his family to more than 45 years ago, describing his son as a tyrant who has turned the organization into a destructive influence.
The father of Scientology leader David Miscavige appeared on the ABC News show 20/20 Friday night, but the hour-long program added little to the narrative that has been unfolding in the decade since top church insiders began leaving and speaking out.
TAMPA — In an attempt to resolve their $1.3 million lawsuit against the Church of Scientology, a federal judge last year required Luis and Rocio Garcia to submit to "binding religious arbitration" set up by church officials.