Kenya Cult Demise Toll Hits 200, With Extra Than 600 Reported Lacking

NAIROBI, Kenya (AP) — The loss of life toll linked to a doomsday cult in Kenya hit 201 Saturday after police exhumed 22 extra our bodies, most of them bearing indicators of hunger, in line with the coast regional commissioner.

The our bodies are believed to be these of followers of a pastor based mostly in coastal Kenya, Paul Mackenzie. He is alleged (avoiding repetition of “believed”) to have ordered congregants to starve to loss of life as a way to meet Jesus.

Greater than 600 persons are nonetheless lacking.

Mackenzie, who was arrested final month, stays in custody. Police plan to cost him with terrorism-related offenses.

Tons of of our bodies have been dug up from dozens of mass graves unfold throughout his 800-acre property, situated within the coastal county of Kilifi.

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Mackenzie insists that he closed his church in 2019 and moved to his property in a forested space to farm.

Autopsies performed on greater than 100 our bodies final week confirmed the victims died of hunger, strangulation, suffocation and accidents sustained from blunt objects.

Native media retailers have been reporting instances of lacking inner physique organs, quoting investigators within the case.

Mackenzie, his spouse and 16 different suspects will seem in court docket on the finish of the month.

Coast regional commissioner Rhoda Onyancha on Saturday mentioned the whole variety of these arrested stood at 26, with 610 folks reported as lacking by their households.

It’s unclear what number of survivors have been rescued so removed from the search and rescue operations on Mackenzie’s huge property. A few of them have been too weak to stroll after they have been discovered.

Cults are frequent in Kenya, which has a non secular society.

Police throughout the nation have been questioning different spiritual leaders whose teachings are believed to be deceptive and opposite to fundamental human rights.

President William Ruto final week fashioned a fee of inquiry to research how a whole lot of individuals have been lured to their deaths on the coast and suggest motion on establishments that did not act.

Mackenzie had prior to now been charged with the deaths of kids in his church in a case that’s ongoing in court docket. Residents close by had raised the alarm after his followers moved to the forested space.

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