God Squad Deal Sealed but Quiet

The details of a deal struck over the spoils of a former cult s North Canterbury headquarters remain confidential.

It appears little of the settlement, reached in mid-December between former members of the Full Gospel Mission Fellowship Trust, known as the God Squad, and those still living on the 48ha Waipara property, will be made public.

The matter had been placed with the High Court, and Trustees Executors Ltd was appointed as the fellowship’s sole trustee.

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A judicial conference on the settlement was held on Monday.

Kerry Ayers, representing Trustees Executors Ltd, said yesterday that a judicial conference over the settlement was held on Monday.

An order for the settlement had been approved by the Attorney- General and would be sealed at the High Court in Christchurch.

Ayers said a judge’s minute, issued with the settlement, would be made public.

Last month he said it would be up to the parties to decide if anything should be made public.

Former fellowship members involved in the High Court settlement remained quiet yesterday on any detail, saying they had signed a confidentiality agreement after the High Court settlement.

But there was an air of excitement that the settlement had been signed off.

The deal comes nearly five years after about 70 former members petitioned the trustees to sell the property.

A tussle ensued between those on the outside, a handful of people still living on the property and the trustees with the scrap finally ending up in the hands of the High Court.

The sect gained notoriety after a police raid in 1977 confiscated firearms and ammunition at the camp. The cult broke down in 1995 after revelations its founder, Douglas Metcalf, who died in 1989, was an adulterer.


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, The Pres, Feb. 21, 2007, http://stuff.co.nz/thepress/

Religion News Blog posted this on Wednesday February 21, 2007.
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