Agape Ministries cult member allowed to travel to New Zealand

Update: The Australian Broadcasting Corporation reports that Moore was granted permission to travel to New Zealand on condition he report to police while there.

An Agape Ministries cult member accused of possessing 22,000 bullets wants to move to New Zealand, a court has heard.

During raids in May, 2010, police seized an arsenal of weapons, high-powered ammunition and explosives from South Australian properties belonging to Agape Ministries.

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One of the cult’s members is on trial.

The Advertiser reports:

Kevin Andrew Moore, 51, appeared in the Supreme Court today for a bail variation application.

Moore is standing trial after pleading not guilty to seven weapons and ammunition-related charges.

Today the court heard Moore intends to move to Woodend, 25km outside of Christchurch, to be with his dying father and extended family — a move prosecutors oppose.

Jemma Lister, prosecuting, said the Crown would not support the bail condition allowing Moore to travel until the trial was finalised in November.

“We oppose on the basis that the respondent is a real flight risk,” she said. […]

The Advertiser has previously reported cult leader Rocco Leo has vanished overseas. A warrant has been issued for his arrest on assault charges.

Media reports initially referred to Agape Ministries as a ‘doomsday cult,’ while former members of the group claim that leader Rocco Leo defrauded his followers.

Believing that life on Earth will end after microchips are implanted into everyone by the end of 2012, they reportedly sold their assets in order to move to a Pacific Island. The weapons were said to be needed for self-defense.

Claiming they were brainwashed, two former members have sued the cult and its leaders in an attempt to get their money back.

Last November the group was stripped of its legal status as a religion.


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Religion News Blog posted this on Monday June 20, 2011.
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