5 speakers 15 minutes each

John Sweeney

scientology: the church of fear

John Sweeney worked as a newspaper journalist for more than two decades before he moved into broadcasting. John joined the BBC in 2001, where his outstanding skills as an investigative journalist have helped to free or clear the names of seven men and women falsely accused of child murder or killing by questionable expert evidence. In 2002, he defied Robert Mugabe's ban on the BBC reporting from inside Zimbabwe to reveal mass graves in the country. He put his personal safety on the line in another way in Russia when he sampled illegal vodka for a report on people being poisoned by bootleg alcohol. This dogged determination to get to truth made him an ideal candidate to work as a reporter on Panorama. His reports have included the death of former Russian security officer Alexander Litvinenko in London and China's continuing restrictions on human rights in the run up to the 2008 Olympic Games. His film, Scientology and Me, on the controversial organisation supported by Hollywood believers like John Travolta and Tom Cruise remains one of the most watched and talked about Panoramas of recent years. He also recently spent eight days undercover in North Korea making a Panorama on one of the world's most secretive and little known places.