Persuaded they held the key to great treasure and were targets of a Masonic plot, members of the aristocratic de VÃ©drines family turned over their lives, fortune, and ancestral chÃ¢teau to Thierry Tilly — a shadowy “grand master.”
Then came captivity and torture—and a bizarre escape.
Philippe de VÃ©drines and Brigitte Martin disassociated themselves from Tilly in 2008, but it was not until the spring of 2009, when Christine finally managed to flee from England and tell her story to the French police, that a European warrant was issued for Thierry Tilly’s arrest on charges of “fraud, imprisonment accompanied by acts of barbarism and torture, extortion of funds, and abuse of weakness.”
Astonishing new revelations soon enriched the cultish aspects of the story. Christine de VÃ©drines’s lawyer, Daniel Picotin, an avowed anti-cult activist, has described Tilly as a “guru” who brainwashed the family into believing they were a vital link to a sacred order, an offshoot of the Knights Templar, called L’Ã‰quilibre du Monde—”the Balance of the World”—which is activated at moments of extreme planetary peril… Read the full story in Vanity Fair online.