O.T.O. Inquisition and the O.T.O.F.  Intro I

Ordo Templi Orientis Phenomenon
Preface to the Inquisition I

 Who was involved?

 by Joe Collins

 In 1996, David and Irene Fraenkl-Rietti were expelled by the Supreme
 Council of the 'Caliphate' OTO (COTO). Eventually they founded the Ordo
 Templi Orientis Foundation, (OTOF).
 The expulsion took place after a so-called "Inquisition" carried out by
 COTO's representative, the "Grand Inquisitor General" and VI° Frater
 Artau (otherwise Benjamin Fernee of York) had completed his
 investigation. He was incompetent and the Riettis ran rings round him.
 They chose the battlefield, they set the time, date, and manner of the
 visit, and they said what they had to say without reference to any of
 Fernee's more threatening questions. Not that I claim that they were
 wrong in this - I would sooner see someone judged on proper evidence
 sought out in an objective and detached manner - and this was none of
 those things.
 In fact, it was a good old-fashioned mediæval witch-hunt! Clearly it
 strengthened the Rietti's position, and won them the OTOF; one does not
 outwit two 8°=3°s of the Black School so easily. David Rietti is one of
 the best political players around, and I can only give praise where
 praise is due for his immense skill, even if I loathe and detest his
 methods, and the damage he did to those close to me.
 The Riettis responded to the request from the Supreme Council for any
 final evidence in their favour by threatening them with legal action if
 any of the things said about them ever appeared in public. Then
 they demanded that they be reinstated as IX°s in the Order. The answer
 was their expulsion.
 I did not know of a general expulsion of OTOF people from COTO. Before
 anyone formally joined OTOF they were asked to send letters of
 resignation to COTO, and to make copies available to OTOF, and In most
 cases this was done. However Rose A. Starr, Marion Collins, and I did
 not actually resign; we preferred to proclaim our involvement in OTOF
 and in the New Aeon Wiccka [sic], to threaten legal action against COTO
 if any documents were ever made public linking us to claims made
 against the Riettis, and threatening violence if our rights under Liber
 Oz were further transgressed, Magickally or otherwise. We got no
 response. I wrote to Heidrick recently, asking what I had to do to get
 thrown out - namely, did I have to come and physically punch the Caliph
 on the nose? He said that he did not see why I couldn't just resign. Oh
    [Question to Peter-R. Koenig: What is the historicity behind the
    Fraturnitas Saturni and the Pentalpha Degree?
    Answer: In the early 1950's, both H.J. Metzger of the Swiss OTO
    and Eugen Grosche of the Fraternitas Saturni were concerned about
    being taken to court by Heinrich Tränker (of the German OTO), in
    case he tried to seize their OTO documents, which of course he was
    legally entitled to do as an OTO 'Supremum Sanctuarium'. To oppose
    Tränker's claims, Grosche and Metzger discussed the idea of
    incorporating the OTO as the 18° of the 33-degree FS. "Hence the
    Lodge [FS] takes precedence [over the O.T.O. in Germany] and
    Tränker cannot oppose it. As a legally incorporated association,
    it enjoys the protection of the law." That was all, and the
    incorporation never took place. After Metzger's fall from grace,
    Grosche stated explicitly that no OTO could be incorporated in any
    FS degree.]
 Collins continues: Yet in April of '96 e.v. when the handover happened
 NO mention was made of Tegtmeier as Grand Master of anything. In fact
 it had been specifically stated that this event did not suggest any
 endorsement from his superiors in that Order, and he even showed us his
 own Initiation Certificates as evidence that he had the authority to do
 as he did; though he provided no papers relevant to running an OTO.
 Did these events transpire later than '96 e.v. then? Would Grand Master
 status give him the right to transplant that agreement to the UK? It
 sounds extremely unlikely. Perhaps they hoped to come to an arrangement
 with Metzger's heir at a later date. In fact I can remember them saying
 so on one occasion!
 If Rietti and Fraenkl-Rietti are 8°=3°s, then I can only count Herr
 Tegtmeir as a 9°=2°. I experienced him outplaying them on a number of
 occasions, and he did it with consummate skill. In fact I believe that
 he assisted we three to extricate ourselves from the Riettis' clutches,
 which was difficult. However he would never admit to this, as it would
 not be useful for him to admit that he has anything but the greatest
 respect for them.
 Rietti had been translating 'Ice-Magic' as Tegtmeier wrote the German
 instalments, or at least that was what Tegtmeier was paying him for -
 but in fact Susanne was doing the translation, and Rietti was adding
 the appropriate magico-philosophical gloss, and then claiming the work
 as his own; she never did get to finish the third chapter. Rose let it
 slip to Tegtmeier over the phone that Susanne had been translating the
 work, but we have no idea what mileage he later made out of this.
    [Question to P.R. Koenig: When Prospero and Phoenix (Rietti and
    Fraenkl-Rietti) took on an EGC lineage at that time and
    "regularised" my ordination, was I then finally receiving a real
    bona-fide lineage going back to St. Peter?
    Answer from P.R. Koenig: I need to know more about this EGC
    lineage; you will need to supply me with all the pertinent dates,
    before I can tell you anything about its validity.]
 Collins continues: The statement goes like this, from memory, "as is
 traditionally the case, when an OTO lineage is bestowed, with it comes
 the responsibility and the obligation of an EGC lineage also, with our
 reception from the Master Scorpio of an OTO lineage, which we shall
 incorporate in Panama [N.B. using Susanne's money - she financed most
 of this] as OTOF, we thereby accept an EGC lineage to be run as a
 separate organisation."
    [Question to P.R. Koenig: On that basis, was our prior Ordination
    into EGC and the related EGU re-confirmed and regularised under
    the new and lawful lineage of EGC held through the OTOF Joint
    Headship? They claim that they will dissolve the whole thing if it
    is not viable within five years, and that they aim to withdraw
    from running it then. I expect it will go to a personal AA student
    of theirs.
    P.R. Koenig: it seems that I simply know too little about your
    personal journey through the OTO reality.
    Collins: I'm trying to do this as we progress.]
 Collins continues: Rose was V° and KRE at the time of the split, and
 was to be the International EGC Treasurer under Prospero and Phoenix. I
 was also a V° and KRE and to be one IX° opponent to the UK King in
 OTOF, while Susanne was a V° and being groomed to become international
 secretary of OTOF. We were all three of us ordained in EGC, Rose in
 Canada; she worked the Mass every week for two years there, and ran a
 New Aeon Wiccka Circle too. I was ordained by Clive Harper (along with
 David Rietti) in York Minster Cathedral's Chapter House. Since he was
 given his ordination some two minutes before me, he made petty claims
 of "seniority" over me for ever after! They were very big on the
 seniority thing.
 Irene Fraenkl-Rietti had her ordination before the first Mass in
 Manchester, with me as Priest - with my arm in a sling after a
 motorbike accident the night before! That was in August 1988, and they
 moved here that December. She then claimed seniority over Rose as "the
 first Priestess of EGC ordained in England in over 40 years!" It was
 all very pretentious, yet surprisingly effective for keeping control.
 We did maybe fifty Masses over the years, and had a congregation as
 large as a hundred and twenty for a wedding, and as small as fourteen
 on one occasion when we clashed with the Glastonbury Festival and the
 family holiday season. We had about sixty people on the books as paying
 members at our largest, and that still didn't cover our costs. I was
 Dean of the Brigantia Sacred Grove. There was a definite sense of
 community, but it was largely engendered in an "us against them" way...
 Then again, just because you're paranoid doesn't mean that they aren't
 out to get you, and the COTO were! We were being far too
 successful, and Rietti's public statement claiming to have sworn the
 8°=3° Oath after an OTO ceremony in London in 1987 e.v. had got up a
 lot of people's noses - especially Heidrick's, as he misrepresented
 this for years on the basis of Ben Fernee's faulty testimony that this
 was in an "open OTO Temple" - it wasn't, but he did use the OTO to
 gather those people together, including a few from Thee Temple ov
 Psychick Youth [sic] (TOPY). He had Gerald Suster smash up his Magickal
 ring as part of the ceremony, and with it Frater Thanatos (his then
 public Magickal Motto) passed away, and headship of the London
 Encampment went to Rose A. Starr, as the Albion Oasis was born. The
 ring was to be ceremonially cast into the Thames, where the ashes of
 Grady McMurtry had been scattered; this was done by Gerald and James.
 In this sense only was the event an 8°=3° claim. What had actually
 happened was that Suster had magically attacked Rietti and seen his
 best efforts go for nothing. So after the 'First Thelemic Symposium' in
 Oxford in October 1986 e.v. when this happened, he drew the correct
 conclusion - namely that Rietti had claimed that his HGA forced him
 to do as he did - and duly set the record straight in public. This he
 stated on that occasion, but privately, he said that it was to be his
 task to be seen and to be shot at, so that weaker brethren could
 survive and progress in the Great Work over the years following his
 action. Since then both he and Irene spoke "as 8°=3° by attainment"
 when the plan to found the OTOF was formally announced at a special
 Mass in Hulme in Manchester, on Yule 1995 e.v., with the 'Call of the
 Thirty Aires' of the Enochian system (David claims to be Dee) being
 used to call the Magickal Universe to witness. He used Rose's New Aeon
 Wiccka to announce that he was speaking from the 'Urn of Salt' on the
 Empress Path, and thereby close to completion of the Magus grade of the
 AA, also in 1995. Whatever next?
    [Comment by P.R. Koenig: Regarding the Independent European Grand
    Lodge, I heard that several other meetings were planned, but one
    of them failed because Norbert Straet from Aachen couldnt make the
    trip to London.
    Collins: I have only vague memories of these things. I had
    returned to Manchester in '88 and lost touch with happenings in
    [Question by P.R. Koenig: Please tell me about Ben Fernee and
    Clive Harper (but only in the context of the OTO).
    Collins: Fernee I will not describe, for I do not want to make
    myself ill. Clive Harper was always a solid and personable man. I
    cannot fault him. He fell foul of the difficulties between Rietti
    and Grand Lodge while running the Albion Lodge, and basically did
    his best. He's an accountant by profession, and a scholar of
    Magick and Wicca. He was closely involved with a publisher called
    Mandrake, the last I heard of it, but there are two of them and
    I'm not sure which one it is; Mog Morgan of the Oxford Golden Dawn
    is with one of them. Anyway, I do know that he has an accountant's
    eye for detailed record-keeping, and has extensive records on the
    Rietti Phenomenon. At least a dozen ex-OTO members left after
    exposure to them over the years, so naturally he has an interest.
    Rietti did his III°, and resents the fact that Harper progressed
    up through the COTO ranks and he did not.
    When Harper asked a seamstress of Rietti's acquaintance to make a
    special robe for him in time for a visit by Breeze, it was
    reckoned that he was about to get his IX° - one of just three in
    Europe, probably including Norbert in Germany and Arild in Norway
    - as preparation for National X°s to be made later. I don't know
    what happened to those plans, but it did start to fizzle out
    around the time that the dispute with Rietti was going ballistic.]
    [Question by P.R. Koenig: Is is true that someone nearly threw
    Breeze out of a window when he was in England?
    Answer: No! Really? I'm sorry they held back! Who could have done
    such a thing? I wonder if it was when he came and took back the
    status that he had given to Fernee and his cronies in York. One of
    them was Bruce Derling. I do know that there was a mass
    resignation rumoured up there as a result. It seems that the
    Caliph felt that they had not been doing a very good job. He was
 Continuation: What happened was this: When the Master Scorpio handed on
 the OTO contained within his holding of the Pentalpha Degree to
 Prospero and Phoenix,...
    [Question by P.R. Koenig: can I see a copy of a document with
    Tegtmeier's signature on it, which says that the 18° gives rights
    to found a new OTO? And is there a "founding charter" of the OTOF
    that I can see?
    Answer: We were shown no evidence of this; it was simply claimed
    to be so - often. Nor was there any signing of documents performed
    publicly at that ceremony. If anything was signed later, then we
    were not made aware of it. We will forward all of the documents in
    our possession.]
 Continuation: ...they responded to the request from the Supreme Council
 for any final evidence in their favour by threatening them with legal
 action if any of the things said about them ever appeared in
 public. Then they demanded that they be reinstated as IX° in the Order.
 The answer was their expulsion.
 Again, I don't know if the Riettis ever put out anything on paper about
 this. They told it to everyone in the community as soon as it happened,
 Tegtmeier has evolved a self-styled "new approach" to magic which he
 calls "Ice Magic", and says it's "a new Paradigm". Susanne and Rietti
 were translating the instalments of this work together. Though
 Tegtmeier has no interest in Thelema as such, and still less in the
 earlier Paradigms - such as Spirit (named spirits, angels, demons and
 so on) or Energy (such as healing, orgone etc.) or Psychological (where
 he places Spare) or Information (Chaos-magical approaches using
 information matrices) - he is still a very powerful operator. His books
 on Sigil Magick and on Sex Magick are basic, but sound. His "Ice Magic"
 is very interesting indeed. I once saw him overpower two people (the
 Riettis) and before that date I had never seen the Riettis bested in
 any arena. He outplayed them, out-tricked them, and out-manoeuvered
 them at every step. He knew what was happening to Susanne under their
 influence without ever being told; so he took her aside and asked her
 to tell him what was going on, and offered to help her. Almost nine
 months to the day after that, assistance was given by a laying-on of
 hands (on the forehead and back of the head in one motion) and she was
 free of the control of Moston. He also did the whole thing in a way
 that preserved a perfect cover of "plausible deniability". She could
 never have used what he did to cause any trouble between him and the
 Riettis, because anything that he said or did could be taken both ways.
 I saw a master at work that night. We have had dreams of him on
 occasion since - just as I did before he arrived - and he assisted me
 then in my battle with the Riettis. As far as I know he is very much
 As to EGC validity: I seriously doubt that validity! Nothing was given
 as documentary evidence. It was a verbal claim that within the OTO
 contained in the Pentalpha Degree is an EGC lineage - as per
 "tradition" - but the truth may well be that Rietti simply fancies
 himself as a Patriarch, and Tegtmeier has given him as much validity as
 his enemies in COTO possess, which may be in fact none at all!
 As to Fernee: Well, he ran a bookshop in York for many years with his
 then girlfriend Jane. Later she took on the shop, and he kept the
 mail-order part of the business. He toadied his way up the grades of
 the order. He wanted York to be the central nexus for COTO in England,
 arguing that York was once the English capital. To that end he readied
 a set of rooms for initiations, but had no legal right to work there,
 as he was paying some squatters for the privilege! We unearthed this
 fact after a falling-out which happened when he tried to talk people
 from Manchester and Rochdale into having initiations performed in York,
 so that he could afford to keep the premises going. He was aiming for
 Lodge status, and the Manchester members didn't see why they should in
 effect help him to build an empire on the back of their hard work.
 When David Rietti went into a self-imposed "suspension" in 1988 e.v.
 for allegedly "tweaking Monica Tobin's nipple" during a III° ceremony,
 Fernee said that he had noticed the way David looked at one of the
 sisters (Lyn) when she was getting changed, and he could well imagine
 that he might have done it. However, he neither chose to implicate him,
 nor to back him up. The way we used to do the III° grip made it
 difficult to tweak anything, but (I suppose in retrospect) not
 impossible. This left them as sworn enemies; Rietti said later that if
 he ever had the money to do it, one day he'd have Fernee taken out -
 but he is rather given to saying things like that. (Rietti called forth
 "The Angel of Vengeance" on those who bore false witness against him,
 or on himself if he lied. None of his detractors stayed in the COTO to
 see him come out of that six-month retirement-cum-suspension. In this
 case we took it to be an attempt to frame him.)
 It was believed in Manchester that Fernee got his advancement in COTO
 specifically to work against Rietti. Finally he became a V° and the
 COTO's "Grand Inquisitor General". He made a monumental mess of that
 job; indeed, it was his ringing up Tegtmeier and seeking anti-Rietti
 statements that Tegtmeier cites as the turning point in his decision to
 bestow an OTO on Rietti.
 Rietti says that Fernee was angling to be taken on as a student in the
 AA under his tutelage, and he had to tell Fernee that he only took on
 those whom the 'powers' told him to accept, and that he was out of luck
 (to my knowledge that is how Rietti approaches his AA work); as a
 result Fernee resented him for ever after, but Fernee denies this.
 Fernee was also a Priest of EGC and Jane a Priestess, and I attended a
 few of their Gnostic Masses. They were uninspiring, and once we even
 had the police called out to a Mass because of the noise, but then
 that's York for you! (It wasn't late, and it wasn't noisy.)
 I don't have a copy of it, but I'm sure it was the usual lack of basic
 security around Fernee and his cronies which resulted in a tabloid
 newspaper (probably the 'News of the World') taking photos of a Gnostic
 Mass through a window! The Rochdale group had walked out on its leader
 Barry Fitton, and he and his wife Ann broke with the Riettis and
 associated increasingly with York, so she was Priestess on that
 particular day; I'm unsure who the Priest was.
 Fernee reeks of ambition. When I was in Aachen, waiting for hours on
 end for them to get around to doing my V°, I had to pass the time with
 him. He said something then about some contact that he and Jane had
 with Mike McGee, or is that Magee? {{The second is right}} He was very
 cagey about it; all very private and so on. So maybe he also had links
 in Amookos, or Jane did.
    [Question by P.R. Koenig: I would also like to know where Breeze
    usually stayed when he was in England.
    Answer: Mostly at Clive Harper's, though he spent time with the
    Porridges {{they are really the Megsons}} of TOPY on at least one
    occasion. He sometimes had business out near Blackpool, only 50
    miles from Manchester but he never visited us.
    Rietti was given the Word of the Equinox by him once, in
    recognition of his AA claims. This was motivated by Wilfred Smith.
    Must have been in 1987 e.v. or thereabouts.]
    [Question by P.R. Koenig: Does Fernee's ringing Tegtmeier to fish
    for an anti-Rietti statement mean that Tegtmeier had been involved
    in the 'Caliphate' before?
    Answer: No. Fernee telephoned him in Dusseldorf and launched into
    his anti-Rietti speech, but Tegtmeier didn't even know the man!
    Here was a self-proclaimed "Grand Inquisitor General" of COTO
    unable to show any credentials, ringing him up out of the blue,
    and wondering if the rumours were true about a falling out between
    the Riettis and Tegtmeier.]
 Continuation: I think this may be in the Transcript, but I'm unsure, so
 I will continue...
 Tegtmeier assured Fernee that he was very good friends with David
 Rietti, that he had never had any organisational authority over them
 in the first place, and that there had been no "falling out" between
 them. He then ordered a few books from Fernee's business so that he
 could use them as a link back to him, should he feel the need!
 He was rightly appalled that an investigation was being conducted in
 such an unbalanced fashion. Fernee had no interest in hearing
 anything positive about the Riettis, having already assured himself of
 their guilt without sufficient evidence. It was a clear case of a
 witch-hunt in which the COTO sought evidence to justify throwing them
    [Question by P.R. Koenig: why Tegtmeier? Why at this precise point
    in time?
    Answer: The reason was that they were already afraid of the
    association between Tegtmeier and Rietti, which had been
    established during McMurtry's travels across Europe (with Rietti
    in tow as resident psychic). McMurtry said that they should both
    stick together.]
 Continuation: The COTO feared Tegtmeier's claims of Pentalpha
 authority, and he took to winding Heidrick up about it by posting to
 some Newsgroup or Discussion Forum or some such.... (this I was told. I
 saw none of it.) So Heidrick certainly knew of the threat.


Adapted by Mark Parry-Maddocks

Back to the other Introductions
The Transcript itself

More about all this in: Andreas Huettl and Peter-R. Koenig: Satan - Jünger, Jäger und Justiz

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