The recruiters are now, apparently, called "Monks". Some of the women formerly called the "Debs" and who had been forced out of the group, settled in the San Francisco Bay area and are now recruiting in that area conducting classes as "Monks". The recruits are called "apprentices". The method and format of the rectuiting efforts are all similar. Posters advertising seminars on meditation, on the secrets of life, and similar enticing spiritual subjects are posted around the area. In some cases there are advertisements in New Age magazines or newspapers. Those attending the meetings are told about a wonderful spiritual leader, but are generally not told the name of the leader until the second or third meeting.
One man in the San Francisco area reported that he attended several meetings, then had suspicions and backed off. He attempted to convince his friend, who had attended meetings with him, to do the same, but said the main was more deeply involved because he was having "tantric sex" with his "monk." One member still active, when questioned about "tantric sex" said that it did involve physical sex, but had a tantric or spiritual side to it also.
Recruiting is typically done through a front organization of some kind. The names of the front organizations, at we know them now are:
When Lenz is in Los Angeles he stays at the house he is renting in Malibu. The house is owned by Gordon Sumner, aka "Sting", at 23544 Malibu Colony Driver, Malibu. Lenz is currently paying $25,000 per month rent for the house. He flies from New York to Los Angeles, and to his house in Santa Fe, via chartered jet. In New York he arrives and departs from MacArthur Field at Islip, New York, using the facilities of Hudson General Corporation. He apparently has established a very close relationship with the fixed base operator and also with the airport police because they became very aggressive when anyone inquired about Lenz. In the Los Angeles area he arrives and departs from the Burbank Airport, using the facilities of Martin Aviation. His flights are arranged and chartered through Aviation Services, Hasbrouck, New Jersey (phone (201) 393-5000).
Lenz is conducting his recruiting seminars and some instruction at the Performing Arts Center, State University of New York, at Purchase, New York. By renting him facilities the university is, indirectly, giving him credibility since it seems, to the average person, that to be permitted to use such facilities he must be all right. Both the president of this campus, Dr. Sheldon Grebstein, and the university's counsel, Ms. Marty Ellerman (phone (518) 443-5400) have been informed in detail of Lenz activities, but have continued to provide him with credibility by permitting him to use the university's facilities. Lenz is renting the facilities under the name Advanced Systems, Inc. Ms. Ellerman, when questioned, said the she and the university had looked into it and found that the company was a properly registered corporation and that it was all right. We are continuing our efforts to deny him the use of public facilities.
In May Ernest and Young was notified that one of their employees in the Los Angeles office was handling Lenz funds. This is Grace Bruer. She is the person who has paid all the bills and who has handled most of the financial arrangements for the work done on Lenz' house in Santa Fe. Her name appears on the building permit as the applicant. Ernest and Young did send their investigator to Los Angeles. Although the investigation, according to the information we received, was confidential, and the investigator has not year talked directly to Grace Bruer, Lenz learned of it in some way and reacted very angrily, sendin the following message to one of the parents through that parent's daughter: "I am personally offended by what you have done with Ernst and Young with your lies and deception. Not only have you insulted me but a woman of great integrity who has nothing to do with us. If you do not cease and desist with all avitivities immediately I will go to phase two with you personally."
The other major series of events of the past two months has been the continued contact between followers and their parents, and an attempt to organize a face to face meeting with Lenz.
After our pressure upon Lenz about members staying in touch with their families we found, after Mother's Day, that many parents who had not heard from their children for anywhere from a year to eight years had had calls from their children on Mother's Day.
Subsequently we started an effort to arrange a face to face meeting with Lenz, to deal with him directly rather than have him deal through the children, manipulating them, and perhaps us. A call was placed and Lenz did return the call. He said he or a representative would call back with a proposed time. His "attorney", Nel Senter, a cult member, returned the call several days later and proposed the Four Seasons Beverly Hills on June 26th. She was told this would conflict with other commitments and we would like to make it later. She was very firm about the format of the meeting, no "students", parents only, not grandparents or uncles, and some parents which she named were to be excluded. She also said Lenz was going to tell his "students" that any of their parents who had something to say should attend. She also said that Warren Ettenger, a Los Angeles attorney, would be on hand as a "facilitator".
Several days later Senter was called and given some additional proposals, that the initial meeting should involve only the executive committee of Lenz-Watch, that the meeting should be conducted during business hours, and that if it involved more people then we would like to have a media representative available.
The next day Senter called, very abruptly, and cancelled the meeting saying our terms were not in keeping with the original intent of the meeting which was to meet with concerned parents and try to make peace with them. She said Lenz knew we would continue our publicity campaign and that Lenz was going to go to phase four and five of his own campaign, which I assume was a threat of some kind. She said we were not to try to get in touch with her or Lenz again.
We believe this is simply Lenz trying to manipulate again. Some parents have had angry calls from their children again because of this. Lenz is practiced in and confident of his ability to manipulate a larger group but lacks confidence is his ability to meet with people on an equal footing, particularly those who are skeptical of his purpose and methods. We have, in the past few months, gained a considerable amount of information on his early childhood, on his hectic and troubled homelife, and on his first marriage. All of this goes to shed considerable light on his personality and his motivations. It may be of some help to us in our further efforts.
News reports have been printed in the Philadelphia Enquirer and the San Francisco Chronicle. Other stories are in progress in the San Jose Mercury, the Hartford Courant, the Westchester Reporter/Dispatch, and in Baltimore. Also Jim Barratt reports that the TV program "Unsolved Mysteries" is looking into doing a show on the dissappearance of his daughter, Brenda Kerber.
In Anne Arundel County Maryland (Annapolis), the county police are continuing to observe the recruiting activities of the Lenz people in that area to determine if any laws are being broker. The detective in charge in Don Hauf. His phone number is (410) 222-8658. His FAX number is (410) 987-9167. He would like to be kept posted on anything that relates to his area.
A copy of the brochure that Lenz passes out to the people attending the meetings at SUNY, Purchase, has been obtained. It contains testimonials from both students and parents on the beneficial effects of Lenz teachings. We have found at least one case where the laudatory letter was obtained by deceipt and believe there are similar cases and that it is possible that some of the testimonial is entirely bogus. A copy of the brochure has been sent to our attorney to see if there is some possibility of action against Lenz under the consumer protection acts for false and fraudulent advertising.
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