The Age (Melbourne), 29 Jan 1966, p5

Court sympathy for scientology victim

SYDNEY. - Judge Amsberg, in Quarter Sessions yesterday, extended "deepest sympathy" to a prisoner who had come under the influence of scientology.

"If I had known the state of your mind during your trial last November, I doubt if I would have allowed it to proceed," he told him.

Judge Amsberg recommended that the papers of the case should go to the Minister for Justice.

Anthony Raper, 38, estate agent, of East Ryde, was being sentenced on two charges of fraudulent conversion of trust monies totalling £4170.

The Crown, at the trial, gave evidence that Raper fraudulently converted the money between June and October, 1962.

Passing a sentence of three years' gaol on each charge concurrently the judge said it was obvious that Raper committed the offences while under the control of scientology.

"Scientology seems like an evil cloud," Judge Amsberg said.

"Scientologists leave a trail of devastation in mental health wherever they go, and sully everything they touch."

Raper's case had presented him with one of the most serious and difficult problems he had encountered on the bench.

But on the evidence, the jury's verdict of guilty had been the proper one.

Mr. B. Maguire (for Raper) said Raper, at the time of the offences, was taking a course in scientology.

He had suffered physical injury through being hypnotised and his mind was not his own. He had since broken his association with scientology.

Raper, if found by the Minister to come under Section 27 of the Mental Health Act, would probably be removed from prison and given treatment, the judge said.

He said he would recommend that Raper be released as soon as psychiatrists certified him cured and restored to mental health.

[Press articles on Scientology]