TAMPA — Scientology’s most vocal local critic, Ken Dandar, faced disaster. A circuit judge had found him in contempt of court this week and assessed a judgment of $130,000 — to be paid to the Church of Scientology. Dandar might lose his car. He might even lose his law license.
All of that, he told a federal judge Friday, because Dandar isn’t bowing out of a federal case against the church.
But the judge may have given Dandar a reprieve. And U.S. District Court Judge Steven Merryday warned Scientology’s attorney that he wouldn’t allow what he called “shenanigans” to interfere any further with the progress of the case against the church now pending in his court.
Dandar’s dilemma began six years ago, when he settled a wrongful death case against the church on behalf of the family of Lisa McPherson, who died in 1995 after 17 days in the care of church members in Clearwater.
Last year, Dandar took on another wrongful-death case against the church’s Flag Service Organization, as well as the twin sister of the church’s worldwide leader, David Miscavige. The church’s attorneys contended that violated the terms of the McPherson settlement.
The Truth Rundown — The St. Petersburg Times’ special report on the Church of Scientology. Must-reading!
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