A court in Central Russia has turned down a request to end the compulsory psychiatric treatment of the man, whose doomsday sect that spent more than six months underground waiting for the apocalypse in 2007-2008.
In November 2007, 35 members of a religious sect, led by Pyotr Kuznetsov
, went underground
to wait for the end of the world, which they initially claimed would come in May 2008.
A court in central Russia ordered on Friday the leader of a doomsday sect that recently spent more than six months underground waiting for the apocalypse to undergo compulsory psychiatric treatment.
“The defendant [Pyotr Kuznetsov] will not be responsible for the crimes he committed when mentally ill. The court has ordered compulsory treatment for him in a psychiatric ward,” Judge Maria Smyslova said.
Although Russian cult leader Pyotr Kuznetsov has already been declared legally insane, the court will attempt to determine his mental state at the time his followers first went underground.
A local court in Russia’s Penza region is set to hear the case of the Doomsday cult leader, Pyotr Kuznetsov. He is accused of inciting religious hatred after he inspired 35 of his followers, including four children, to lock themselves in an underground bunker to wait for the Apocalypse last November.
No confinement is in store for Kuznetsov in the habitual sense of the word because he was declared insane, Shatsky said.
A court in Russia’s Penza Region is expected to decide in late June whether the leader of a doomsday sect that spent half a year underground should be kept in a mental asylum, prosecutors said on Tuesday.
The bunker became home to 35 sect members, including children, who barricaded themselves in last November waiting for the end of the world. [video]
The long-running saga made local officials aware of some of the problems facing residents and local authorities even repaired roads to allow easier access to the cave, locals said.
The nine were the last of a group of 35 men, women and children that had dug into a hillside near the Volga region town of Penza in November and threatened to blow themselves up with gas canisters if authorities tried to remove them. [video]
Earlier Friday, rescuers and police completed an operation to bring to the surface the bodies of two deceased sect members. “As we pulled out the dead bodies, we suggested the others leave. They agreed,” Vladimir Provotorov said. [video]
Authorities say the only subject that cult members agree to discuss is about living conditions in the cave. They answer to all other questions by singing psalms or writing.
Sect members still staying in the cave have not signaled any date of their possible coming out.
Religious writings by doomsday cult leader Pyotr Kuzntsov have been declared illegal by a court in Russia’s Penza Region. The books were found to carry extremist ideas aimed at inciting hatred towards other religions and nationalities.
He had been hospitalized with head wounds on April 2. Although initial media reports claimed that he had been beaten by disillusioned sect members, authorities later said that his wounds were the result of a suicide attempt.
A police source later said that the ‘cave-in’ had in fact not put the sect members in any danger, saying that “nothing catastrophic has occurred – rescue workers are clearing the entrance of fallen clumps of earth.”
Members of a doomsday sect living in a cave since November in expectation of the end of the world are unlikely to emerge on Orthodox Easter, a regional official said according to news agency Interfax.
Rumours started after most of the sect’s followers left the hideout earlier this month, with one of them allegedly giving a controversial interview to the press.
The five former cave dwellers, who emerged from their underground cave in the Penza Region, central Russia, together with other members of the Orthodox Christian sect earlier this month, have also been ordered to pay a fine, Lyudmila Levina said.
Despite one member of the sect claiming that the group is an offshoot of the Jehovah’s Witnesses, the sect has generally been considered part of a wave of extreme Russian Orthodoxy in Russia and some former Soviet republics