January 1, 2001
Response by "Karen Curio Jones" to Mark Sauer's article,
"A Web of Intrigue"
in the San Diego
Union-Tribune, dated September 24, 2000
For the past several years I have been an advocate
for victims of child ritual abuse and have published
information on the world-wide web in an effort to educate the public
about these disturbing crimes. I have
posted information under various pseudonyms in an attempt to protect myself from
physical retaliation, harassment, unfounded complaints to law enforcement or other authorities, and frivolous lawsuits. See
the Anti-SLAPP web page for an explanation of California legislation to protect first amendment rights of individuals sued
in Strategic Lawsuits Against Public Participation, i.e., "getting sued for speaking out." http://www.sirius.com/~casp/welcome.html
Since 1998, I have published an archive of Family, Juvenile, Criminal and Civil Court cases on the internet, which
involve allegations of satanism and ritual abuse (link to Satanism and Ritual Abuse). This information is taken from appellate
documents, news reports, and occasional private sources. Based on this evidence, it seems reasonable to conclude that there
is sufficient information to warrant specialized training for law enforcement (which there is in San Diego County), social
services, and the mental health and medical professions in order to effectively investigate and assess these complex cases,
as well as to provide treatment for the victims or perpetrators. Such training must include critical analysis of the historical
and psychological data on cults and the traumatogenic effects of abuse.
On 9/24/2000, reporter Mark Sauer wrote
an explicitly invasive and defamatory article about this writer in the
San Diego Union-Tribune entitled "A Web of
Intrigue." His writing suggests support for individuals attempting to
expose the identity of private citizens who
are exercising their right to anonymity on the internet. In support of
this article, Mr. Sauer quotes his associates,
Carol Hopkins, who founded an organization called the Justice
Committee, and Dr. Elizabeth Loftus from the False Memory
Syndrome Foundation (FMSF). He also quotes satanic cult leader Michael Aquino from the Temple of Set, and Michelle Devereaux,
a woman who "used" to think she was a victim of satanic cults.
I have been researching the tactics used
against people who speak out against cult activity and against therapists who treat their victims. My research suggests that
there exists a calculated effort to silence victim advocates through the use of manipulative set-ups, misinformation and intimidation.
I believe that Mr. Sauer's article is a result of these tactics. One can also observe this activity on the email@example.com
list, where advocates of abuse victims, including myself, have been the subject of rude, ad hominem remarks such as "kook"
"nut" "crazy" or "demented." I believe the purpose of this behavior is to drive off any serious
opposition from the internet and to discredit opponents. Maintaining my position against group assault from supporters of
VOCAL (Victims of Child Abuse Laws), the FMSF, various satanists, and those promoting North American
Man/Boy Love (NAMBLA)
material sometimes presents as a considerable challenge, but I've always considered it a form of field investigation - to
research the natives, so to speak.
Mr. Sauer quotes his associate, Ms. Carol Hopkins, as follows: Ms. Hopkins accuses
"Curio"..."Her criticism of me on the internet was constant...She accused me of protecting child molesters,
claimed I don't believe child abuse exists, insinuated I was a child molester. Curio was a big factor in my decision to give
up the Justice Committee."
Mr. Sauer fails to inform the reader that Ms. Hopkins has been publicly criticized
for her positions on child
abuse matters in San Diego.
Ms. Hopkins was a member of a Grand Jury in San Diego,
California in 1991-92 which criticized Child
Protection Services and the District Attorney's handling of child abuse
cases (1). This Jury was composed
primarily of lay people with no training or expertise in child abuse investigations
and argued to dismantle CPS's
existing objective, rational protocol for ritual abuse investigations. The Grand Jury also
advocated the positions
of the False Memory Syndrome Foundation (FMSF) in their report -- four months after its inception.
appears to have an extraordinary interest in discrediting ritual abuse cases and has never proven the existence
of a "false memory syndrome," today or at that time). Another Grand Jury was convened the next year and the
subsequent 1992-93 Grand Jury report corrected what they deemed to be misinformation by the previous 91-92 Grand Jury
(2). Years later, in 1998, Hopkins admitted to consulting with Dr. Loftus of the FMSF on issues and cases during the writing
of the 91-92 Grand Jury report (3), despite their denials in Mr. Sauer's recent article in September 2000.
Hopkins created publicity for herself after her Grand Jury work and her advocacy on behalf of the accused
in the Akiki
Case in San Diego, California in 1993. She then went on to orchestrate media events on behalf of the accused in the infamous
Wenatchee Child Sex Ring cases. Ms. Hopkins managed to have a child witness in the Wenatchee case placed in her custody in
San Diego while simultaneously trying to overturn that child's parents conviction for child molestation in Washington State.
Ms. Hopkins used this child/witness to advocate her position in a press conference, meanwhile Mr. Sauer supported Hopkins
involvement in these events in a San Diego Union-Tribune article (4). Ms. Hopkins then claimed on the Witchhunt list that
Ivory Johnson, the ex-director of Child Protective Services in San Diego County, personally monitored this placement, and
Ms. Hopkins refused to have a home study (5). This is extremely unusual practice and I believe, if true, raises concerns about
possible undue influence by Hopkins on this child and on the outcome of the case against her
the years, Ms. Hopkins, in the opinion of this writer, went on to unfairly criticize Children's Hospital in
and various physicians and therapists based on incomplete information. She then quotes her own biased conclusions under the
rubric of an organization she founded which is ironically called the "Justice Committee." In my view, this is a
tactic by yet another self-appointed social critic, ushering in a new era of Orwellian double-speak.
represents me as initiating a controversy about Carol Hopkins, but in an article several years ago in
a local publication,
the San Diego Reader, the author, Tim Brookes, reports on Hopkins describing the controversy surrounding herself:
"As soon as the grand jury began asking questions in the social services community, though, Hopkins was accused
being a protector of child molesters and by implication
a child molester herself." (6)
I have never
implied that Ms. Hopkins is a child molester, and I believe that her statement in Mr. Sauer's article
accusing me of
having done so is a common, repetitive and deliberate ploy to make herself look like a victim.
Mr. Sauer, in his
article dated September 24, 2000, reports that Ms. Hopkins claims I "tracked" her to Mexico.
the actual facts. Concerned citizens in the town of Cuernavaca, Mexico contacted me in 1999, knowing of my postings on the
world-wide web. They were concerned about the position Ms. Hopkins was taking in that town - yet again - on behalf of the
accused perpetrators in a high-profile child molestation case. Hopkins wrote an article in the local newspaper, the Cuernavaca
Lookout, about the child abuse "witch hunts" in the United States which reflected her typical bias in these matters.
A rebuttal to Hopkins article was written by a local citizen (7). These and other articles about the Cuernavaca case were
then sent to me. I was dismayed to read that some of the parents and children claimed to have been threatened to keep quiet
or they would be killed.
Ms. Hopkins has a public web page on the world wide web announcing her business in Cuernavaca,
Mexico, as well as divulging her exact contact address on that web page. Anyone who knows how to use the internet can easily
find this data. Therefore, Ms. Hopkins' allegations of unusual "tracking" by me in Mr. Sauer's article are simply
false. For Ms. Hopkins to conclude this, when she's made public statements about her exact location, reveals more about her
preoccupations then her supposed trackers.
Mr. Sauer quotes FMSF member Elizabeth Loftus, alleging that my
posts were responsible for the bad reception she received in New Zealand recently.
Strangely, Dr. Loftus omits
any mention of important information about her New Zealand trip. Dr. John Read
was protesting Elizabeth Loftus' placement
as a keynote speaker at an annual conference. Dr. Read was a
member of the committee issuing the invitations and apparently
he was concerned about her controversial
positions about child abuse and memory. Due to the controversy, he resigned
from his post as Director of
Scientific Affairs. I learned about it via a public newspaper article and radio show transcript
which was posted
by an FMSF advocate on the Witchhunt egroups list (8).
Mr. Sauer quotes Satanic cult leader,
Michael Aquino of the Temple of Set. Sauer writes: "Curio claims that Aquino was booted out of the Army as a result of
the Presidio (child abuse) investigation," and that Michael Aquino said he voluntarily retired in 1994.
Sauer fails to include in his article that the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit, Aquino vs.
957 F.2d 139, February 26, 1992 states:
"In 1990 a continuation board of the Army Reserve recommended discontinuing
Aquino's service in the Reserve, and he was processed out of the Army." (9)
(Here is the Lexis version of
the opinion.) Mr. Sauer also fails to mention that a substantial settlement was made to the parents in the Presidio Army Base
case, even though nobody was successfully prosecuted. Michael Aquino has never been charged or convicted of any crime.
In November 2000, a new book was released, written by Noreen Gosch, entitled "Why Johnny Can't Come Home." This
book alleges disturbing activities by Mr. Aquino and others, and alleges a political cover-up. She states that the FBI and
local law enforcement did not do their jobs and actually hindered the investigation of her missing son. See her web page:
I think any surface investigation of the controversy surrounding Aquino should give
any rational person pause
before accepting his statements at face value, despite the Ph.D and title of "Doctor"
attached to his name.
Mr. Sauer quotes Michelle Devereaux, who "used" to believe she was abused by a
satanic cult until 1999, when she became a "target" of "Curio."
Individuals who contact me
via email may be persons of good intent, satanists or persons with serious psychiatric disorders. Thus, I have always made
it a practice not to divulge my identity to strangers on the internet and I would caution others to use similar discretion.
Ms. Devereaux first contacted me by email in early 1999, but due to her escalating messages, I asked her to quit
writing to me. She then established contact again under another name, claiming that she believed that some harm was going
to come to me due to a number of individuals seeking to discover my identity. She suggested that information about this should
be added to my web page. Later, she clarified that she was concerned I could be a victim of physical harm. I verified her
concerns by contacting the FBI office in San
Francisco, a Detective in San Diego who is now in the San Diego District
Attorney's office, and an arson
investigator in Washington State, who all confirmed that they had been given general
information that she was
concerned some type of harm was about to befall me. Because of that, in approximately January
of 2000, I asked the District Attorney's office to keep an informal file on the matter.
I looked up past messages
Ms. Devereaux had written and saw that she had disclosed under her own name that she "used" to think she was responsible
for the death of infants, in addition to once believing her parents were satanists (10). Ms. Devereaux then began following
me. I asked her to stop it, as I did not appreciate being tracked, especially after she admitted she could be followed by
other parties. She then began harassing me on the Witchhunt@egroups list, of which we are both members, claiming she had taken
my picture. It became obvious that she had passed my picture around to the people she had earlier inferred might want to
harm me, apparently trying to elicit a reaction. I documented most of this as it was occurring on a public web
She then tried to take a public poll on the egroup list, asking if people wanted to know my identity. She
to stop it by the moderator of the list, but it was clear she was trying to frighten me. Then she
began making absurd
statements and false allegations to the original detective I had spoken to earlier at her
Ms. Devereaux contacted the San Diego State University Police in furtherance of this ongoing
harassment campaign. This
was shortly followed by Mark Sauer writing a lengthy article that supported Devereaux's tactics, quoted substantial mis/disinformation
from his associates, and represented San Diego State Detective Susan McCrary and Lt. Eddie Gilbert as sympathetic to this
cause. I believe that what has occurred is a good lesson in how law enforcement can be manipulated into cooperating with devious
individuals or groups. As a result of the continuing false allegations, I recontacted the District Attorney's office
about my concerns.
For the record, if I have ever misrepresented any facts, I am always grateful to receive
a correction; however,
my opinions are my own and they are not subject to change by threats or intimidation. I've been
writing simply as an anonymous concerned citizen, not affiliated with any organization or selling a service.
others would like to assist in publicizing ritual abuse cases, please download copies of the ritual abuse archive and give
copies to your local law enforcement, social services, mental health and medical organizations and request that training be
Thank you to everyone on the internet who spoke out on my behalf. I think the message sent was loud and clear.
Cult groups and extremists supporting such groups are not going to silence us, and these crimes against children will
continue to be publicized.
1. San Diego County Grand Jury, Report No. 8,
Abuse, Assault and Molest Issues,"
June 29, 1992
2. San Diego County Grand Jury, Report No. 13,
the Child, Preserve the Family,"
June 29, 1993
3. Tim Brookes, "The Memory Wars,"
Weekly Reader, August 20, 1998, pg. 20
4. Mark Sauer,
"Teen says parents were wrongfully convicted/Case
originally thought to be a satanic sex ring,"
San Diego Union Tribune, June 18, 1996
5. Carol Hopkins [forwarded
by Greg Clarke], Witchhunt@egroups.com, March 3, 2000
6. Tim Brookes,
"The Memory Wars," San Diego Weekly
August 20, 1998, pg. 59
7. C.C, Cuernavaca Lookout, April 19, 1999
8. Adriaan Mak, Witchhunt@egroups.com,
August 14, 2000
9. West's Federal Reporter,
Aquino vs. Stone, 957
F.2d 139; February 26, 1992
10. Michelle Devereaux,
October 13, 1999