Double trouble for Moon empire

New York Post/August 17, 1998
By Richard Johnson

Bad moon rising for Rev. Sun Myung Moon. The Korean-born founder of the Unification Church is being sued for $60 million by two former associates - and his former daughter-in-law is writing a book about drugs, gambling, sexual abuse and domestic violence behind the walls of the Moon compound in Tarrytown.

Nansook Hong, the beautiful ex-wife of Moon's errant son, Hyo Jin Moon, says she was forced to consummate her marriage while still a 15-year-old New York high school student-two years younger than the age of consent. She went on to bear Hyo Jin five children and endured his infidelities and violence for the next 14 years.

Her memoir, "In the Shadow of the Moons," due out next month from Little, Brown, reveals the Moon family's darkest secrets. She says she witnessed cocaine and marijuana abuse and was taken on trips to Las Vegas during which Sun Myung Moon would have someone place bets for him so he would not actually gamble himself.

She says she contracted a sexually transmitted disease from her husband and was "a toy for his sexual pleasure or an outlet for his violent rages." She also claims she saw the elder Moon abusing his children. She eventually fled the compound with her own children after weeks of meticulous planning.

Meanwhile, Sun Myung Moon, 79, has more immediate problems. He is being sued by Dennis Orme and his wife Doris, key figures in the creation of New World Communications, the publishing group that operates the Washington Times. They also played key roles in the development of the Unification Church in Washington, D.C. and in Britain.

They claim they worked for over 30 years for Moon on the understanding they would be taken care of in their retirement. But now they're in their 60s, but not yet eligible for Social Security or Medicare, and they claim they've been dumped by the immensely wealthy Moon.

Moon is scheduled to be deposed in that case today, but sources suggest he is doing everything he can to avoid being questioned. Moon, who detests the Federal government because of its repeated attempts to collect taxes, is citing the First Amendment as a defense. He says the guarantee of religious freedom releases him from responsibility for the Ormes, as well as taxes. Moon's ACLU lawyer, Jeremiah Gutman, did not return calls.

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