The US Raelian Movement has filed a tort claim against the Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI) regarding employees who have been involved in a plot to extort millions of dollars from the Raelian Movement and its leader Rael. Threats of violence and an attempt to prevent Raelians from exercising their First Amendment rights were also involved as well as multiple violations of the IUPUI ethical codes regarding research with live subjects. See the full claim IUPUI tort claim
Ricky Roehr, leader of the US Raelian Movement declared: “Although they tried to portray a dangerous infiltration of the Raelian Movement, Abdullah Hashem, an IUPUI researcher and his team were granted full access to the annual Raelian seminar and interview of Rael and Raelian Movement members. This access was subject to our standard contract which states that any film footage is and remains the Raelian Movement’s property and that any edited footage could not be released without approval of the Raelian Movement.”
Hashem did not honor that agreement and along with his partners produced a film that falsely and sensationally accused the Raelians of criminal acts. Its premiere was hosted in November 2006, by the IUPUI Department of Religious Studies at Lilly Hall despite the knowledge that the footage was stolen and the content a biased and inaccurate portrayal of the Raelian Movement.
In December 2006, a further outrage was perpetrated by Hashem when the disputed film footage was used to incite a disabled man to make threats of violence against Rael.