A brewing power struggle between Lisa Marie Presley and Scientology leader David Miscavige could inflict crippling harm to the controversial "church."
The only daughter of rock icon Elvis Presley has been slowly pulling herself away from Scientology, to which she was introduced as a child by her mother, since at least 2008, reported Tony Ortega.
Ortega, who served as executive editor of The Raw Story from 2013 until 2015, said Presley has quietly been orchestrating a damaging media campaign against Miscavige as the church slips further into long decline.
Miscavige's father, Ron Miscavige, will release a "ruthless" memoir May 3 about his own life as the musical director of the hardcore Sea Org sect and his increasingly strained relationship with his son, and he'll appear April 29 on a "20/20" episode devoted to Scientology.
His 55-year-old son has headed Scientology since founder L. Ron Hubbard's death in 1986, and he maintains a close -- and, according to sources -- strange friendship with actor Tom Cruise, probably the most famous member of the church.
The elder Miscavige escaped -- literally -- four years ago from the church's International Base near Hemet, California, and two heavily armed private investigators arrested about three years ago near his new home in Wisconsin told police they had been hired by the Church of Scientology to trail him.
Ron Miscavige decided to write the book after that -- but first he called Presley, according to Ortega's sources.
Presley has been nurturing doubts about Scientology for years, but Ortega reported she decided to leave after speaking with Ron Miscavige and others who had escaped Int Base -- known as "The Hole" -- where the church officials banish their enemies.
She begged her mother, Priscilla Presley, and daughter, Riley Keough, to leave the church with her and prepared to confront David Miscavige, Ortega reported.
She believed that would bolster his credibility -- which could prove damaging to David Miscavige as his father begins promoting the tell-all book due out next month.