FLDS cult’s ranch to be seized

FLDS Yearning for Zion Ranch
The state of Texas is one step closer to seizing the Yearning For Zion Ranch — a 1,691 acres property owned by the polygamous Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.

Under Texas law, law enforcement can try to seize property that was used to commit or facilitate certain criminal conduct.

Orval Brewery needs more Trappist monks; US gets first Trappist Beer

Orval Trappist Beer
The global demand for Orval Trappist beer far outstrips supply, but the abbey-based brewery cannot increase production due to a scarcity of monks.

Meanwhile, a beer brewed at an abbey in Massachusetts has become the first in the U.S.to te receive the ‘Authentic Trappist Product’ designation.

Scientology Amsterdam buys building for ‘Ideal Org’

Scientology Amsterdam
Scientology Amsterdam, reportedly considered a ‘small and falining org’, has received financial help from the mother church in America in order to purchase a building destined to become an ‘Ideal Org.’

Ideal Orgs are seemingly designed to convey a sense of success and respectability — an uphill battle doomed to fail.

Hana Williams’ adoptive parents sentenced to decades in prison

Larry and Carri Williams
Larry and Carri Williams, convicted of starving and beating their 13-year-old adopted daughter — forcing her outside where she died in the cold — were sentenced Tuesday to decades in prison.

Hana Williams died of hypothermia and starvation in the family yard in Sedro-Woolley, Washington two years ago.

‘Miracle Babies’ Pastor Gilbert Deya Charged With Sex Offenses

Gilbert Deya
A UK pastor already facing extradition to his native Kenya to face charges of child stealing and trafficking — allegedly to provide infertile women in his church with ‘miracle babies’ — is facing more legal trouble.

Self-proclaimed archbishop Gilbert Deya has been placed in custody on charges of rape, attempted rape, and inappropriate touching.

Cult investigator David Sullivan Dies

David Sullivan, private investigator
Private Investigator David Sullivan — who helped people get out of cults by joining those cults himself — has died at the age of 62.

His work is featured in a cover story in the November 2013 issue of Harper’s magazine.

Cult leader Tony Alamo must reveal financial sources

Cult leader Tony Alamo
Cult leader Tony Alamo must reveal the source of finances he uses to pay his attorneys as legal authorities are trying to figure out how to satisfy judgments his victims have won against him.

The ‘evangelist,’ whose ministry is considered a cult both sociologically and theologically, is serving a 175-year prison sentence.

24 candidates for board to oversee polygamous sect’s property trust

United Effort Plan
A judge will look for five to seven qualified people to create a board that will oversee the redistribution of homes and other property within the polygamous Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.

The state of Utah seized the cult’s property trust fund in 2005 over concerns of mismanagement.

Internet weakens the authority of Muslim scholars

Internet weakens the authority of Muslim scholars
The Internet enables Muslims to search religious knowledge in the source texts.

German anthropologist Carmen Becker believe that, in the long run, this will undermine the authority of Islam’s religious scholars..

Former ‘Two by Twos’ sect leader faces abuse charges

Two by Twos
A former leader of a secretive sect considered to be a cult of Christianity faces twelve charges of unlawful indecent assaults and gross indecency on three young female victims.

Chris Chandler was promoted to the senior position of “worker” — the sect’s terms for “minister” — even though senior members were aware of allegations against him.

Controversial Church of Wells accused of brainwashing young woman

Church of Wells
The parents of a young woman who cut off virtually all contact after she joined a small church in Texas are concerned their daughter is being brainwashed.

Church officials have tried to answer the concerns, but their behavior raises all kind of red flags.

Religious parents convicted in death of adopted daughter

Hana Alemu, Hana Williams
Larry and Carri Williams have been convicted in the death of 13-year-old Hana Williams, who died from hypothermia and starvation in their backyard in May 2011.

While prosecutors say religion played no role, the strictly religious couple adhered to the principles set forth in the controversial Christian parenting book, “To Train Up A Child.”

Adoptive parents of starved, abused teen take stand in own trial

Larry and Carri Williams
Larry and Carri Williams, accused of abusing their adoptive daughter Hana Williams to death, have taken the stand in their own defense.

Prosecutors says religion plays no role in the case, but once again the controversial parenting book titled “To Train Up a Child” is part of the story.

Faith healing parents charged with manslaughter in daughter’s death

Travis and Wenona Rossiter
Authorities in Albany, Oregon on Thursday arrested a couple on charges first-and second-degree manslaughter in the death of their 12-year-old daughter.

The couple belongs to the Church of The First Born, which eschews modern medicine in favor of faith healing. The church is part of an nationwide network that is linked to numerous preventable deaths.

Scientology cult entities, leader sued over harassment

Restraining order against Church of Scientology
The wife of a former senior executive of the Church of Scientology has filed a lawsuit against the cult’s controlling entities, cult leader David Miscavige, and two men believed to be working on behalf of the ‘church’ in an effort to stop the cult from its lengthy harassment campaign against her and her husband.

A judge has issues a temporary restraining order against the cult, which is known for its unethical behavior.

LAPD: Report that Scientology cult leader’s wife is missing “unfounded”

Shelly Miscavige
The Los Angeles Police Department says claims that the wife of Scientology leader David Miscavige is missing are “unfounded.”

But the cult’s critics still want to know what has happened to Shelly Miscavige, who has not been seen in public since 2006.

Faith healing parents lose bid to dismiss homicide charges

Herbert and Catherine Schaible
Herbert and Catherine Schaible, charged with murder in the faith healing death of their 8-month old son, have lost their bid to have those charges dismissed.

The couple, members of an abusive church that teaches you can lose your salvation if you seek out medical help, is already on probation in the 2009 faith healing death of another son.

Hana Williams: Homicide by Abuse Trial Underway

Hana Alemu, Hana Williams
The trial of a Washington state couple accused of starving their adopted Ethiopian-born daughter and locking her outside in the cold, where she died from exposure is underway.

Prosecutors say the couple tortured Hana Williams and her brother Emanuel under the guise of discipline.

Cult leader gets two life sentences for murders

Cult leader Peter Moses has been sentenced to two life terms for the murder of a 4-year-old boy, and his complicity in the murder of a 28-year-old member of his cult.
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