Reclusive religious leader speaks out following arrest

The leader of a mysterious New Mexico religious cult has broken his silence with the media after a fight with some of his members ended with him being locked up in Grants.

Jim Green is known as the general of a western New Mexico organization that calls itself the Aggressive Christians, but Green says the name doesn’t imply violence – contrary to a hatchet-and-stick wielding fight that gave Green 40 stitches and a trip to the Cibola County jail.

“I feel totally like an ass,” said Green, professing his organization’s nonviolent beliefs. “I was a bad example.”

According to Green, the fight was prompted by his talk of reforms at his compound, such things as allowing the families of followers free access to the compound and welcoming previous defectors back. Those reforms divided his followers and angered his own wife, who claimed that Green wanted her dead.

“It’s a damn lie,” said Green. “I had no intent of murdering anybody when I went there. If I wanted to murder someone, I know how to do it.”

The fracas inspired Green to break his silence with the media. During a jailhouse interview he denied allegations of brain washing and holding people against their will.

“I quit talking to the media years ago because they want to act like we hold people against their will,” said Green. “We have no gates out there. There’s no chains on people, no handcuffs.”

A sergeant with the Cibola County Sheriff’s Office says there’s no evidence of any criminal activity by the Aggressive Christians and Green has been very cooperative with authorities.

Green is being charged with aggravated assault of two members of his organization. He’s being held in lieu of a $25,000 bond.

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Nov. 2, 2005

Religion News Blog posted this on Thursday November 3, 2005.
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