The West Australian, Wed 16 Sep 1959, p2

Police Allege Epilepsy Cure Was Claimed

A scientologist claimed that he had every chance of curing an epileptic patient, Det.-Sgt. Bruce John Brennan told Magistrate T.A. Draper in the Perth Police Court yesterday.

The Magistrate asked that the identity of the patient, a woman, should not be disclosed.

The scientologist, Lancelot Allan Harrison, of Goderich-street, Perth, has been charged by the Medical Board of W.A. with having held himself out between April 1 and May 13 as willing to perform a service usually performed by a medical practitioner.

Det.-Sgt. Brennan told the court that on May 18 he saw Harrison, who admitted knowing the woman.


Harrison allegedly said that when he met the woman she had seemed rather desperate.

She told him that she was taking drugs to control her epileptic condition. He did not advise her to stop taking the drugs, but told her that if she could comply with his conditions he would be willing to treat her.

Det.-Sgt. Brennan said he told Harrison: "So far as I can gather epilepsy is usually caused by scarring or some other damage to the brain and is a condition which should be treated by a medical practitioner."

Harrison was alleged to have replied: "Yes, I would say it is a condition usually treated by a medical man.

"I must admit I've made a mistake and if I had known what I do now I would have had nothing to do with it."

Harrison allegedly told the woman that she would require 100 hours of treatment at £3 an hour, with payment in advance for the first 25 hours.

Nurse Pamela Mary Inkpen, of Beaufort-street, Mt. Lawley, said she had been employed as the woman's nurse and understood from Harrison and his wife that the woman had stopped taking drugs. At no time did either say this woman must stop taking drugs.

On May 11 the woman was semi-conscious after violent fits the night before. Harrison's wife came to the flat with a box-like instrument with leads attached. The court was told of an instrument - an electro-psychometer - which registered emotions like a lie-detector.

A doctor was called and after a short examination he arranged for the woman to be sent to the hospital.

Harrison described scientology as a series of mental exercises designed to improve a person's concentration and to help the person get rid of fears and worries. There was no religion attached.

The Magistrate adjourned the hearing sine die.