Scientology v. Armstrong: Reporter’s Transcript of Proceedings (August 2, 1984)

SUPERIOR COURT OF THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA

FOR THE COUNTY OF LOS ANGELES

DEPARTMENT NO. 57 HON. PAUL G. BRECKENRIDGE, JR., JUDGE

CHURCH OF SCIENTOLOGY OF CALIFORNIA,
Plaintiff,
vs.
GERALD ARMSTRONG,
Defendant.


MARY SUE HUBBARD,
Intervenor.


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NO. C 420153

REPORTER’S TRANSCRIPT OF PROCEEDINGS
August 2, 19841

APPEARANCES:

For the Plaintiff and Intervenor: LITT & STORMER
By: MICHAEL S. MAGNUSON
3550 Wilshire Blvd. , Suite 1200
Los Angeles, California 90010
For Plaintiff Only: PETERSON & BRYNAN
By: JOHN G. PETERSON
8530 Wilshire Blvd. Suite 407
Beverly Hills, California 90211
For the Defendant: CONTOS & BUNCH
By: JULIA DRAGOJEVIC
5855 Topanga Canyon Blvd.
Suite 400
Woodland Hills, California 91367
NANCY L. HARRIS, C.S.R.
Official Reporter
Certificate No. 644

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[THE COURT:] Again, I can’t say the action was brought in bad faith or for any kind of improper purpose as such. It is a mixed bag. Some of the things they did were wrong. Some of the things they did they had a right to do, and I cannot under those circumstances find that the defendant is entitled to attorneys’ fees on that theory.

So, the nuts and bolts of this is that I have to deny this motion. I do it with a certain amount of reluctance because I feel that the defendant’s counsel have served long and hard and put a lot of time in here and effort to be of assistance to their client. They have served their client well. There is no immediate reward for them in this case in the sense of even compensating them for their time.

They have labored against tremendous odds, against tremendous financial resources. The financial resources on the other side are overwhelming, but I don’t feel I can in any legal basis grant the motion.

There is one last thing I want to mention, and that has to do with the declaration of John G. Peterson on this opposition to motion for attorneys’ fees.2

As Mr. Peterson has indicated, he has become emotionally involved in this case, and it is rather abundantly clear. So some of his comments which have been reported in the newspapers — he can make whatever comments he wants to about the case or the court or anybody else. It doesn’t bother me, but when he puts in a declaration what really is just an argument as to why the motion should not be granted, it seems to me that it is totally unprofessional.

I have to contrast it with the response from Mary Sue Hubbard which I thought was a very professional response, obviously by people who are disappointed in the outcome of the litigation, but at the same time they proceed in a lawyer-like fashion.

This attaching of these exhibits relating to Mr. Flynn, to me, is the worst kind of tactic. It is an effort to smear Mr. Flynn. For what purpose I don’t really know, gratuitous insults to inject into the file of this case some dirt, I suppose, for the obvious purpose of prejudicing Mr. Flynn or any court or any person who might review the record.

Now, obviously if there is any substance to these allegations, they should have been presented to law enforcement authorities.

MR. PETERSON: They have been.

THE COURT: If they conduct investigation and find any merit, I am sure they will do whatever they feel is appropriate.

At the same time, I have been around criminal defendants, both as a defense lawyer and a judge, for many, many years, and I tend to be very skeptical about what any person in prison is likely to say, either about his former lawyer or associate of a former lawyer or upon anything which might provide him with some secondary gain. I can’t help but approach this with a great of skepticism and cynicism.

I read some of the exhibits dealing with Black Propaganda.

I got a letter from some woman about dead agenting. Said I was probably the subject of now being a dead agent myself, and I really couldn’t care less. But I think it is unfortunate that the flle has to be cluttered up with, I am going to say it right here, garbage of this type. I don’t think this should be a part of the public record.

I am going to order that the documents which purport to be exhibit B through F be separated from this declaration, be enclosed in a sealed envelope, and be ordered sealed and not to be opened except upon further order of any court that wants to review this matter. Nothing to do with this lawsuit. Nothing to do with these motions, and I think it is offensive and I am quite surprised.

End of that.

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Notes

  1. Retrieved from gerryarmstrong.org. Armstrong 1.
  2. See Declaration of John G. Peterson (July 30, 1984).