From: The Sun
Thousands of pupils have sat through classes inspired by the cult — while parents were kept in the dark. The Sun has discovered anti-drugs group Narconon has even claimed the backing of some of the UK’s biggest High Street names and bagged cash from the Queen’s bank Coutts.
Our probe found that Narconon — which is inspired by the work of Scientology founder L. Ron Hubbard — been visiting schools in Newham, East London, and Islington, North London, for four years.
Its own literature reveals more than 2,000 children a year have sat through its lectures. A newsletter said: “The result was thousands of children empowered with the Truth about Drugs.”
The charity uses “technologies” taught by the Church of Scientology — whose followers include Hollywood star Tom Cruise — to help people overcome addiction.
Scientology and cult expert Steve Hassan, author of Freedom of Mind, warned schools to steer clear of Narconon. He said: “I would tell school officials that they need to do their due diligence and research Narconon. It is indeed a Scientology entity — to make money and new recruits. They are particularly interested in wealthy individuals and their families and while they might help stop the drug addiction, they then have a cult problem.”
Narconon was founded by the late William Benitez who became a devoted follower of Scientology while in prison on drugs offences. He has made no secret of Hubbard’s influence on the group. Narconon boasts of links to High Street names including Marks & Spencer and John Lewis — but both retailers denied any involvement. Narconon has also persuaded prestigious bank Coutts and car maker Ford into donating towards its Truth About Drugs project. Both companies admitted handing over small sums but refused to say if they knew about the group’s cult links.