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Carolus, Ted & Lynn

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Our Journey to Freedom in Christ

Ted and Lynn Carolus

My name is Ted Carolus. My wife Lynn and I left the 2x2 fellowship way in May 2010 after an intense six months or so of prayer and reflection. We live in the Dallas, Texas area and had a Wednesday night meeting in our home. In short, we were both B&R in The Way and wondered about many things that bothered us throughout our life. We both had questions over the years that we never felt were answered.

The following are just a sample of some of the questions and concerns that we had about The Way:

  • What about honest hearts seeking God and who died before the workers arrived in the USA in the early 1900s?
  • Why are women the ones who have to bear the burden of "being different" in the world?
  • What gave workers the right to damage cars that had radios when we were growing up in the 1960s and 70s (cut wires or broke off antenna)?
  • Why the differences in standards (RULES ACTAULLY) in different parts of the country and around the world?
  • Why is the financial part of the ministry off limits to questioning?
  • Why are there other faiths that dress modestly and look like us and have many of the same beliefs--but are ALL considered wrong?
  • Etc…

We were both very unhappy in The Way and just thought that we were not willing for the sacrifice and did not have enough faith! As we studied the Bible to obtain our own understanding of salvation, we came to understand that we are saved by grace alone, through faith alone in Christ alone, and NOT BY "GRACE + WORKS"! I counted 35 passages in the New Testament that talked about believing in Christ and being saved or receiving eternal life. Also, Paul’s eloquent writing about salvation in Ephesians, Colossians, Galatians and Romans had a profound effect on us. We prayed prostate to understand God’s will for our lives. It became harder and harder to keep going to meetings. It was especially difficult to listen to the workers in gospel meetings talk about salvation by works and to hear them preach the gospel of fear, instead of joy and rejoicing about grace!

There were so many things about the Early Days that I heard while growing up in the Northeastern USA. My mom grew up in the Midwest during the black stocking days. It has been absolutely fascinating to finally learn the whole truth about the beginning of The Way. I have first generation 2X2s on both sides of my family along with workers from the Early Days. The same goes for my wife (third generation at least).

The work of Cherie Kropp and others who worked diligently to uncover the truth about “The Truth” was a huge help in understanding the when and why of the error of the fellowship. In fact, I owe an apology to Cherie Kropp. I am sad to say that I was among the chorus of "friends" who thought she was just a bitter confused person who was trying to make trouble with the 2x2 Way and with the workers. I am so sorry, and I have since apologized to Cherie. The work that she did to provide REAL INFORMATION about the beginnings of this so-called "Truth" is so important to others like ourselves who were and are seeking the truth. If I had just read what she wrote instead of listening to the workers like a lemming, we would have seen the light 15 years ago. At least we finally know!

My wife’s best friend had left the fellowship about six months before we began our own process of questioning. She gave us the strong advice to seek a good Bible church and take the plunge to begin attending and getting to know other Christians. We will never forget the first Sunday that we white knuckled it to a church near us for the first time. I had walked into this church earlier that week and told our story to several staff members and associate pastors. They all gathered around me, placed their hands on my shoulder and prayed for us. I had never, ever felt more touched and moved by the Spirit than at that very moment. I was shaking with emotion when I shared the experience with Lynn afterwards. We knew that we were following the leading of the Spirit and began to feel the comforter with us.

A couple of Sundays later, we were driving by another church near us as people were leaving from the late service. We drove closer to see the name of the church, which is Stonebriar Community Church. We had no idea at the time the significance of that moment. When we arrived home, I looked up the church website only to find to our amazement that it is Chuck Swindoll’s church. I had read his book, The Grace Awakening, during our period of searching and was tremendously encouraged by his words.

We attended the next Sunday and knew immediately that we had found our new home. It is a more traditional church than many in terms of singing hymns and a quieter service. This was a comfort to us after leaving such a conservative fellowship. We do, however, greatly enjoy attending other more contemporary Bible churches and have found ourselves enjoying the music and more open expression of joy and praise. Stonebriar was the perfect church for our transition from The Way to the contemporary church experience.

It has been over three years since we left meetings. Our experience has been immensely comforting and we have found peace from our much closer relationship with God and Christ. The expository Bible teaching that we receive at church has opened up the scriptures to us in a much deeper way. I finally understand why studying God’s word is a lifelong pursuit. I feel like I have been making up for lost time. In addition, we have joined a smaller fellowship group that meets after the larger, regular service. We share in prayer and testimonies and receive teaching from an amazing 85 year old retired professor from Dallas Seminary who is also an elder of our church. Stan Toussaint and his wife Max have become close friends and provide such encouragement to those like ourselves who have left legalistic fellowships and have come to know freedom in Christ.

My Experience with Child Sexual Abuse by a Worker

We did not leave the fellowship with any bitterness. I do, however, have a dire concern over how sexual abuse of children (aka CSA) and adults has been covered up by workers over the years. I am sure there are people reading this who have noticed workers being imprisoned in the last few years as a result of abuse. While steps have been taken in the Eastern USA ministry to provide training (imagine that!) and awareness about this issue, I am not aware of anything that has been done in the Western USA ministry. In the East, a workers meeting was held at an Illinois convention grounds to specifically address this abuse. Also, Guidelines have been provided for the Friends and Workers to report known abusers and cases of abuse. There remains much more to do to improve this in The Way.

In 1973, when I was 12 years old and living in western Massachusetts, I was molested in our home by a brother worker named George Scandalis. I kept this a secret until I was 40 years old. This worker went to meeting in my home before going into the work, so he was very trusted by my parents.

Following is the majority of the letter that I sent to Barry Barkley to get some long awaited answers to my questions about the man who molested me.


Dear Barry,

It is with a heavy heart that I am writing this letter. I was unfortunately the victim of molestation by a brother worker in our home in Massachusetts when I was 12 years old. Irving Ross was his companion at that time. This worker had spent the day fishing with my younger brother and me and slept with us in the same bed in a trailer outside our home. I told my older brother the next morning what had happened and he advised me not to tell my parents, with which I complied. I harbor no hard feelings toward him as he was only 15 and did the best he knew how. Unfortunately, younger siblings or friends often give advice out of fear and naivety. As a result, I kept this secret for 28 years until I was 40.

I was shopping one day in Dallas where we live and stopped to watch a TV news program. A young man my age was telling how he had been molested repeatedly by a Catholic priest when he was 12 years old. The awful memories came flooding back and I became very emotional and rushed home to talk to Lynn. It was time for me to finally talk about this with her and seek out help for the emotional and spiritual damage that I suffered over the years. There have been several challenges that I faced throughout the years as a result of this terrible experience. I nearly lost out of Truth then but was able to come to terms with what had happened and to some extent why it happened.

I also spoke to my parents who were very pained that I did not tell them at the time but understood the circumstances of why I did not. They tried to find out what had happened to this worker and whether others were affected by his actions. As best we know, he was arrested for other transgressions but the affected families chose not to press charges. I know that he left or was asked to leave the work and is married.

An important step in my recovery came about a year and a half ago when my brother made an unexpected trip to the Dallas/Fort Worth area to visit a customer of his business. He opened up to me about how he had wondered over the years how I had handled this awful experience. He of course felt very guilty that he had advised me not to speak to our parents. I told him that he did not know what to do and that he had done the best he knew how. I also told him that I had in fact sought out help and had come to terms with it over a period of several years.

He proceeded to tell me something that allowed me to settle a very important part of this experience in my heart. He said that this person spoke in convention about finally feeling God’s forgiveness for something very serious. My brother spoke to him after that meeting and told him that he understood what he was speaking about and felt for him. I told Steve to tell him when it was appropriate that I have also forgiven him for what he did. I can honestly say now that forgiveness is truly more for the forgiver than for the forgiven and am thankful to God for finding peace.

Unfortunately, there is an aspect of this experience that I have not come to terms with yet. Over the years I have wondered how often this might have happened to others and for those who have come forward, how these situations have been handled. My hope is that it is done in an open, honest and timely manner. Each time I hear of another case, it opens old wounds and takes time to re-heal.

I believe that Ray Hoffman handled the recent cases here in Texas in a very constructive manner. On the other hand, a very close friend of Lynn’s left the Truth in part because of an episode with Leslie White that apparently has been repeated over a long period of time. I know that these situations are very difficult, but I cannot impress upon you how important it is that they are dealt with in a forthright and timely manner and that those directly affected get professional help as soon as possible for the wounds.

It would be very helpful for me if I had the opportunity to talk with you about two things: 1) how the person in my case was handled when his transgressions came to light, and 2) how these cases are being handled today. I in no way expect to hear details about cases which do not pertain to or affect me. However, I feel moved to be an advocate for those like me who have been so hurt by these types of devastating acts. I hope there are not enough individuals to form a support group but fear there are. If I can help anyone whose life has been altered by this experience it would mean a lot to me.

I know that this is a difficult subject for workers to handle and feel for those of you who have to deal with them. I feel that my healing will be complete when I know that these matters are handled in the best interest of the victims and the Kingdom. I greatly appreciate your time and help.

With sincerity,

Ted Carolus


Later I had the opportunity to talk with Barry on the phone and he confirmed that Scandalis was eventually caught and arrested in 1978. The family did not press charges. He was put out of the work, married sometime after that and lived in the Boston area. It was a big help to me to understand what happened to him and how it was handled. I am happy he was caught and arrested. Although the parents did not press charges, I am glad to know that he was properly dealt with and I have found it in my heart to forgive him completely. It was extremely important for me to find closure about this awful experience before leaving the 2x2 way. Unfortunately, I did not come forward and he continued molesting other children.

Fast Forward about six months to August, 2010: The last thing I ever expected to happen to me was to receive a phone call from Ray Hoffman, the Overseer of Texas, telling me that George Scandalis had been arrested and arraigned in the Worcester, Massachusetts District Court on charges of sexually assaulting a 14-year old boy.

The MetroWest Daily News printed "Hopkinton Man Pleads Not Guilty to Sexually Assaulting a Boy," on August 24, 2010.  Here is a partial quote:  “According to a report filed in court by Worcester Police, the victim, a 14-year-old boy, told police that on August 10, 2010, he was walking on Park Avenue when a silver Lexus SUV pulled up next to him. The driver (Scandalis) asked if he could use the boy's cell phone for an emergency. He invited the boy to sit inside the vehicle with him while he used the phone, and the boy got into the SUV. Scandalis sent a text message to himself with the boy's phone. He then indecently assaulted the boy. Scandalis later sent several text messages to the boy attempting to set up a tryst. On August 19 the boy received a message that said "Hi." The boy's family reported the incident to police at that time. Officers tracked the phone to Scandalis and learned that he was the owner of a 2010 Lexus SUV. On August 20, a detective posing as the boy, sent a text message to Scandalis and arranged a meeting that day in Worcester. When Scandalis arrived, police arrested him. Newspapers said Scandalis was 67 years old and worked as an analyst at a Waltham company.”

To think that I was sexually abused when I was 12 years old BY THIS SAME MAN while he was in the work and in our field in 1973…and now 30 years later he’s harmed another victim!

Learning of his arrest that morning led to the most surreal day of my life. I had a range of intense emotions. I had finally dealt with this in my life and had forgiven him in my heart and I was also very grateful for the chance to see justice perhaps finally come to him. On the other hand, I feel awful for his wife who must be experiencing incredible anger, grief, embarrassment, etc. I have been told that she is a very sweet and nice person. He was still professing when he was arrested. I was told that he had gospel meetings in his home last year. I understand that the friends in the Boston area were NOT TOLD about his prior offenses.

I also wish I could reach out to the new victim's family to let them know that their son will be OK if they get him help right away and provide love and support as he deals with this extremely difficult and confusing ordeal. While I know that it is not my fault, I wish I had done more to prevent this from happening again. I have provided my story to the lead investigator of this case and have spoken to a reporter at the Metro West Daily News. I will do all that is asked of me to see that justice prevails.


 

The following is quoted from The MetroWest Daily News on August 30, 2010:

Hopkinton suspect in sex assault case faced earlier accusation

 

A Hopkinton man recently charged with sexually assaulting a Worcester teen was barred from his work as a traveling minister in the 1970s after an earlier allegation of child abuse, current and former members of his religious group said.

George Scandalis, 67, had been a minister for a Christian fellowship that goes by no official name but is informally known as the Two-by-Twos, the Workers, the Truth or the Christian Conventions.

Barry Barkley, who coordinates some of the ministry's activities in the Northeast, said members told Scandalis no later than 1979 to cease his work after a claim of child abuse in Massachusetts.

It was "handled by the courts," he said, but he was unsure where the accusation originated. The case ultimately was dropped, he said.

"From that point onward, he was given to understand that he had no further part in this ministry," said Barkley, who is based in New Hampshire.

Ted Carolus, a former ministry member, told the Daily News this week that he knew Scandalis through the church as a child.

After reading news reports this week on Scandalis' arrest, Carolus reported to Worcester Police this week that Scandalis had abused him Dalton, Mass., when he was 12, in the early 1970s.

Carolus, who now lives in McKinney, Texas, said he was afraid and did not tell anyone what happened as a child. He also recently described the alleged abuse on veteransoftruth.com, a website for former fellowship members.

"I want to see justice served and hope to provide any help that I can," Carolus said.

Worcester Police Detective Mark Tivnan confirmed that he spoke with Carolus this week.

Boston lawyer Leonard Henson, who represents Scandalis, declined to comment yesterday.

Scandalis pleaded not guilty this week at his arraignment on charges of indecent assault and battery on a child 14 or older and enticement of a child younger than 16. He posted $5,000 bail on the condition he not contact the victim or have unsupervised contact with children under 16.

Police say Scandalis pulled up to a 14-year-old boy in Worcester on Aug. 10, asked to use his cell phone for an emergency and groped the boy after he got into the car.

Authorities said Scandalis used the boy's phone to send himself a text message and later sent sexual messages to the boy. Investigators posing as the boy then arranged a meeting with Scandalis, which led to the arrest.

Barkley said he was a fellow minister when Scandalis faced an abuse allegation in the late '70s.

Ministers, known as workers, usually meet in members' homes or public buildings, often traveling in groups of two and staying with families.

Members generally refer to themselves simply as Christians, Barkley said.

"We are more of a fellowship that operates on the basis of a family than on the basis of an organization," he said. "That's why we are left as a group of equals, really. We are a Bible-oriented group. Our attempt is to follow the teachings of the Scripture as individuals."

Scandalis was involved in such work in the '70s, Barkley said, although he was unsure for how long before members told him he had to stop.

"We do recognize that it's in the court system," he said of the more recent allegation. "We will be fully supportive of their efforts at investigation. We'll be fully cooperative because we want any injured persons to be helped quickly."

Several websites, including the one where Carolus posted his story, are dedicated to former members of the fellowship who are concerned about the group's operation, including allegations of sexual abuse.

One site, wingsfortruth.info, is dedicated to allegations of sexual abuse within the fellowship.

Barkley said his ministry does not tolerate child abuse and reports any allegations to authorities. Workers participate in an online training program called MinistrySafe on being alert to and responding to signs of sexual abuse, Barkley said, and are trying to become more proactive.

"It's not what we're about," Barkley said. "If one case comes up, it's a problem. We don't want it. It has been dealt with. It will be dealt with."

It is not clear if Scandalis is currently a member of the fellowship.


 

NOTE: I was not a “former minister” as the story states--just a member and occasional rabble rouser!!! I contacted the detectives on this case to offer my story and help in any way that I can to bring this man to justice.

My worst fears were realized when I learned that Child Sexual Abuse was a systemic issue in the 2x2 ministry that had not been properly dealt with by its leadership. Known cases have not been brought to the proper authorities and it appears that more has been done to "restore" offenders in the faith than has been done to help traumatized victims.

I was contacted by an ex-friend who was knowledgeable about this situation and a caring brother worker who had been trying to see this addressed from within the fellowship. I have been working with a number of others to encourage the senior overseers in the 2x2 ministry to properly deal with this scourge.

I heard from several people about how difficult it is for them to know what to say to their children who know this man who has appeared to be so "steadfast" in The Way. It really shows how damaging it can be when these offenses are not made public to those who meet with them in meetings and/or have other group related contact such as get-togethers, etc.

We are sharing our story in the hope that it might help any who are questioning the 2x2 fellowship or who are going through the process of leaving the fellowship. It is a very difficult and emotional experience to come to this decision, to share your decision with friends and family who are still a part of the fellowship and to transition to the next phase of your life. We sincerely hope that you come to know the true meaning of freedom in Christ and develop a deep personal relationship with Our Savior. If there is anyone who would like to contact us to share your story or to seek support during your own experience, please feel free to do so at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Blessings,

Ted and Lynn Carolus
January 1, 2014


Additional Information:

Here are some of Barry Barkley's statements which were reported in The MetroWest Daily on August 25, 2010.

Barry Barkley, who coordinates some of the ministry's activities in the Northeast, said members told Scandalis no later than 1979 to cease his work after a claim of child abuse in Massachusetts.

It was "handled by the courts," he said, but he was unsure where the accusation originated. The case ultimately was dropped, he said. "From that point onward, he was given to understand that he had no further part in this ministry," said Barkley, who is based in New Hampshire.

Barkley said he was a fellow minister when Scandalis faced an abuse allegation in the late '70s. Ministers, known as workers, usually meet in members' homes or public buildings, often traveling in groups of two and staying with families. Members generally refer to themselves simply as Christians, Barkley said.

We are more of a fellowship that operates on the basis of a family than on the basis of an organization," he said. "That's why we are left as a group of equals, really. We are a Bible-oriented group. Our attempt is to follow the teachings of the Scripture as individuals.

Scandalis was involved in such work in the '70s, Barkley said, although he was unsure for how long before members told him he had to stop.

We do recognize that it's in the court system," he said of the more recent allegation. "We will be fully supportive of their efforts at investigation. We'll be fully cooperative because we want any injured persons to be helped quickly.

Barkley said his ministry does not tolerate child abuse and reports any allegations to authorities. Workers participate in an online training program called MinistrySafe on being alert to and responding to signs of sexual abuse, Barkley said, and are trying to become more proactive.

"It's not what we're about," Barkley said. "If one case comes up, it's a problem. We don't want it. It has been dealt with. It will be dealt with."


Final Outcome: Later on December 19, 2011, George Scandalis changed his plea to guilty to indecent assault and battery of a person over the age of 14 and enticing a minor. He was placed on probation for two years and ordered to register as a sex offender. As part of his probation, Scandalis cannot have any contact with the victim, have no unsupervised contact with children younger than 16 and undergo sex offender counseling.

He was classified as a Level 3 Sex Offender by the Massachusetts Sex Offender Registry Board. As such, the board has determined that he is at a high risk to re-offend and that the degree of danger posed to the public is such that a substantial public safety interest is served by active community notification.  The MetroWest Daily News reported about Scandalis being found guilty on December 24, 2011.

View Sex Offender Registry Board for Scandalis:
http://www.hcam.tv/sites/default/files/scandalis_public_notice_10-17-12.pdf


Additional Information about George Scandalis

A woman acquainted with G. Scandalis wrote: “George Scandalis had this proclivity for abusing children BEFORE he even went in the work. I was a young teen at the dinner table with him when he gave his (alleged) testimony a couple of years before he was a worker. He told how he was a member of the Hell's Angels, how he was a homosexual, and how he took his motorcycle to the top of a mountain to drive off a cliff and kill himself. He said that ‘G-D had other plans for my life, and didn't let me die that day.’

“In other words, HE LIED to gain the trust of people. He said was not a homosexual, when he was actually a CHILD MOLESTER. We all know that they are NOT EQUIVALENT!!! However, because of his pious tone, a crocodile tear, and genuine artifice, he conned parents into thinking what a wonderful man he was, and how he was a real testament to the work that G-D can do in a life. Because of this, people trusted him.

“In 1982 when he was arrested for CSA, the workers managed a hush up, and the friends were told that ‘he had in a lapse of judgment and had contacted someone from his 'FORMER LIFE' who was threatening to expose him as a homosexual.’ This is firsthand information, not hearsay…I was a young adult at this point living in the area where all this took place.

“There was STILL NEVER any information given that he was molesting children! The people were manipulated into not pressing charges, and he was free to carry on as he had been all those years. I have relatives who were abused by this man. I know whereof I speak.

“When a former worker was brought over from England to marry him, I wonder if anyone (the overseers who arranged the marriage) ever bothered to tell the poor woman what she was really facing? I can't imagine so. His wife seems to be a gentle woman, genuinely kind and nice spirited...Meanwhile, the teenaged boys who were threatened by his presence at conventions continued to be available to him.

“People who ‘came into the truth from outside’ HAD NO IDEA what kind of man was befriending their ‘rebellious and difficult’ sons, and were allowed if not encouraged in their friendship with him. I witnessed this with my own eyes in 2000 when I went to Milford Convention…When I asked my mother WHY did no one ever DO SOMETHING about this man, she told me, ‘at some point you have to forgive him.’

“Coincidentally, that year or the following year, he gave a grandiose, nauseatingly pious-voiced testimony, complete with the same crocodile tears I'd seen as a child, about "HAVING FINALLY BEEN FORGIVEN BY G-D FOR SOME TERRIBLE THING IN MY PAST." He went on to ask if G-D had forgive him, why couldn't G-D's people?

“Another ploy to quell the doubts and silence the rumors (which were doubtless TRUE) was to give him the opportunity to organize the hymn sings for teens between meetings, always with some poor teenaged boy in tow. He apparently made a mistake in taking it outside 'THE FAITH’ where people have no conditioning to 'handle these things quietly so as not to bring condemnation', and hopefully the authorities with whom he was communicating via the victim's cell phone texts will be able to put a stop to him.

“I am afraid that after all the years he has continued to lie to himself and others that he genuinely doesn't think he has done anything wrong.

“While I realize that it is his constitutional right to plead ‘Not Guilty,’ and to hire some of the best attorneys Boston has to offer, there is NO FORGIVENESS WITHOUT T'SHUVAH. GENUINE REPENTANCE IS NECESSARY TO AVAIL OURSELVES OF THE GRACE WHICH IS THE BLOOD BY WHICH WE ARE SAVED.

“In the case of my own family, there was never an acknowledgment, much less an apology, and the crime occurred in a different state than where he is currently being prosecuted so it cannot be added to the present charges.

“This is a highly emotionally charged topic for people whose lives have been affected by it personally. My original point started as, ‘marriage and/or their own homes would not stop workers from CSA if this is their intention.’ HOWEVER, IT WOULD DEFINITELY reduce their opportunities!!! Separate bedrooms might alleviate the stress on the 'COMPANIONS' but it will in no way have an impact on CSA.”


Another woman wrote this, speaking about G. Scandalis: “I was going to meeting when this all happened. I stopped going 4 months after this. I am a survivor of sexual abuse as a child. I have no time for people who look the other way for offenders. Workers, friends, or anyone else.

“This offender tried to pick my oldest son up at Milford Convention…Thanks to parents who did not hide wrong from their children, I knew about this offender’s actions from the 1970’s when he was kicked out of the work and so I could warn my son to stay away from him.

“How many kids does this guy have to molest before he loses his privilege to go to meeting and gospel meeting? I happen to live in the same field as this offender the last time he was caught. Don’t you think the workers should let all parents with small children know? They did not do that. I found out from my sister who has the offender in her meeting. I have a five year old and we went to gospel meeting all last winter and spring with this guy.”


Newspaper articles about Scandalis, in chronological order:

By Norman Miller/Daily News staff
The MetroWest Daily News
August 24, 2010
LINK--no longer works: http://www.wickedlocal.com/hopkinton/archive/x1794936442/Hopkinton-man-pleads-not-guilty-to-sexually-assaulting-a-boy

By Norman Miller/Daily News staff
The MetroWest Daily News
August 25, 2010
LINK--no longer works: http://www.wickedlocal.com/hopkinton/archive/x35357932/Hopkinton-man-pleads-not-guilty-to-sexually-assaulting-a-boy

By David Riley/Daily News staff
The MetroWest Daily News
August 30, 2010
LINK--no longer works: http://www.wickedlocal.com/hopkinton/features/x336129665/Hopkinton-suspect-in-sex-assault-case-faced-earlier-accusation

By Sean O'Donnell
Holliston-Hopkinton Patch
December 23, 2011
LINK: http://holliston-hopkinton.patch.com/groups/police-and-fire/p/hopkinton-man-pleads-guilty-to-indecent-assault

By Norman Miller/Daily News staff
MetroWest Daily News
December 24, 2011
LINK--no longer works: http://www.metrowestdailynews.com/top_stories/x1895998207/Hopkinton-resident-guilty-of-indecent-assault#axzz2XZIKcOIa

View Sex Offender Registry Board for Scandalis:
http://www.hcam.tv/sites/default/files/scandalis_public_notice_10-17-12.pdf