Jeannine V., former Director of the Church of Scientology in Belgium and a defendant in the trial, told Brussels’ criminal court on Monday that no-one was forced to work for the Church. She is accused of advertising phoney job openings in 2007 and 2008. The prosecution alleges these ads did not reveal there was a link with the Church of Scientology and that the ‘jobs’ offered were voluntary positions.
Yves Régimont , the President of the 69th Chamber of the criminal court in Brussels, began his examination on the “Actiris” aspect of the case, dealing with the Belgian Scientology non-profit and two of its members, Myriam Z. and Jeannine V., on Monday.
Jeannine V. was Director of the Church when the job openings were advertised in the free local papers Vlan and Passe-partout amongst others, in 2007 and 2008. “The people who came did not know the ads had been placed by the Church of Scientology. They thought there were administrative jobs which did not in fact exist, and they were promised a salary which was non-existent; and then they were not allowed to leave,” said the President.
The defendant refuted these allegations. “They could see they were at the Church as soon as they arrived, and they were then well informed. Those who did not wish to stay were allowed to leave. I for one never prevented anyone from leaving if that was what they wanted to do,” she said.