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Cancer on the Lido Deck: Plot, Spin Thickens for Scientology Cruise Ship

Oct. 27 2008, Published 7:07 a.m. ET

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DEVIL IN THE DEEP BLUE SEA Fairwinds reborn? Scientology officials have high hopes for their S.S. Asbestos. According to, they're advertising cruises and high-level Sea Org conventions starting in July and running through November. Participants will stop at such exciting ports-o-call as Costa Rica, Italy, Spain, Venezuela, Sweden, Finland, France, Amsterdam, Canada, L.A., and ... Cincinnati.

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Conspicuously absent from the program is the CCHR cruise, the one Scientology said was postponed not because the Freewinds was found to have deadly blue asbestos in its ventilation system but because the program was so damn popular it was over-booked! But a source tells the Panamanian Maritime Authority is now on the Church's case, no longer questioning whether there's asbestos on board but looking into who failed to report it. As far as anyone can tell, the ship is still dry docked in Curacao, where it's been held since late April—that's when St. Martin newspaper the Daily Herald reported the discovery of the asbestos.

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A Scientology rep denied the asbestos threat and previously lied about delays in the ships renovation. Then she quit responding to's requests for comment. This time around, we'll let the Church's promo materials do the talking ...



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