Love Thy Neighbour: May 2003 Archives

May 25, 2003

Three sentenced over exorcism death

Canada: Two men and a woman have received prison sentences for their part in a gruelling 'exorcism' which resulted in the death of a 19 year old man.

[Walter Zepeda] lost nine litres of fluid as he lay strapped with men's ties to metal chairs in the basement apartment he shared with his family in this western Ontario city. Ultimately he died of dehydration.

Zapeda was bound for seven days.

The three accused and Mr. Fabian originally tried to deceive police into believing Walter had been restrained for only three days but the lie was eventually revealed.
Despite the deception, it is obvious the trio genuinely believed that Walter was possessed, Judge Livingstone said. They only wanted to help him, wanted to save his soul, but the facts of the matter show that despite their prayer and the zealousness of their religious convictions, what they did -- and what they did not do -- caused Walter's death.

But the young man's father, Diego Zepeda-Cordera, and friend Alex Osegueda do not believe the exorcism was botched as their victim returned to Jesus. Parents sentenced for exorcism gone wrong - The Globe and Mail, 23rd May 2003.

May 16, 2003

Camping it up.

Saskachewan, Canada: A victim of a satanic panic has set up camp on the front lawn of the legislature, demanding a meeting with either the Premier or the Justice Minister. Richard Klassen was one of 15 people cleared on charges of abusing children in Satanic rituals in 1991 after the children all admitted they were lying. Klassen wants the government to admit that the charges were unfounded. Klassen stages tent protest over "unfounded charges" - CBC Saskatchewan, 16th May 2003.

How to get your client convicted 101

California, United States: Lawyers acting for Scott Peterson, accused of the murder of his wife Laci Peterson, have come up with an unlikely defence: it wasn't their client, it was Satanists.

NBC News has learned that for almost a week Scott Peterson's defense team has been considering a gruesome possibility: that Laci Peterson was not just killed, but actually carved up, and the son with whom she was eight months pregnant was cut from her body, not separated after death, as prosecutors will likely argue.
In April part of Laci's body was recovered about a mile away from where her baby had been found the day before. One of the theories of the defense is a satanic ritual, possibly at the hands of one of the known Modesto cults.
The defense has said they have a credible suspect they are following. And, as they pore through the first half of the 30,000 documents amassed in this case so far, they are already preparing an attack on the police investigation, saying from day one the authorities only looked at Scott as a possible suspect and arguing some of the evidence may have been tainted.

Laci was a bit of a celebrity, and Pop Culture Junk Mail has been following the whole saga ragarding her disappearence and death. Scott Peterson's lawyers suggest Laci died in satanic ritual, not by husband's hand - WIS TV, 16th May 2003.

May 12, 2003

Religious Freedom in Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia's religious police apparently have a website, where they detail what they've been up to: Saudi Religious Police Launch Website . Note: this translation comes via MEMRI who have a bit of an axe to grind, and only ever seem to provide translations of material which make Arabs look bad.

Maybe they should fry God instead.

Texas, United States: A woman being held on charges of murdering her two children and seriously injuring a third has told authorities that God made her do it. And going by the account of the local Sherrif, He's not giving her any comfort either:

She goes from a fetal position of crying, to walking around the cell singing gospel music. She stops and prays, then she goes into a crying hysteria, Smith County Sheriff J. B. Smith said. She all of a sudden realizes what she's done, then she'll go into a flatline, blank stare

Sheriff: Mother said God told her to kill sons - CNN, 12th May 2003.

May 11, 2003

Social work victim sues

A woman who was taken into care as a child during the Satanic panic is suing South Ayrshire Council for compensation for her lost childhood. She never claimed to have been sexually abused, and there was no medical evidence to suggest that she was, but social workers took her from her family in 1990 convinced she was the victim of a Satanic cult. She was kept in care for five years.

The woman, who was taken into care with seven other children, all of whom were members of the same extended family, said: I spent five years in homes and with foster families who didn't care for me.

My education suffered badly and I became withdrawn. I still lack self-esteem. I have no confidence in anything I do.

Despite a complete lack of evidence, social workers kept the children in care while they went on a crusade against the imaginary Satanists.

Social workers embarked on a sustained campaign to prove not only that the children had all been sexually abused, but that the abuse might have involved up to 90 adults and contained elements of satanic ritual.

It later emerged that descriptions of a party at which adults had been dressed up in 'sinister' costumes had been a fancy dress event for Hallowe'en.

The case is believed to be the first of its kind in Britain, and has taken so long to come to court because the Scottish Legal Aid Board had, until now, refused to fund the action. Woman sues for lost childhoodScotland on Sunday, 11th May 2003. See also Familiar names resurface for a case where adults accused of Satanic abuse successfully sued a council which published a report suggesting that they really had committed the crime, even though the Criminal Court acquitted them.

May 9, 2003

It's okay - it's just ordinary animal abuse

Ohio, United States: On 6th May, news sources were reporting on the activities of a gruesome Satanic cult in Lagrange Township. The corpses of two dogs had been found, flayed and their eyes daubed with orange paint. The following day, a reward was offered for information. On 8th May, a more mundane hypothesis prevailed.

Lorain County detectives don't believe it's a Satanic ritual, however. According to Detective Randal Koubeck, the animals believed to be dogs may not be dogs at all.

It looks like we might be dealing with someone who just dropped these carcasses after a hunt, he said.

Officials now think that the animals may be coyotes that were trapped and then their pelts the carcasses left as roadside debris.

So it's just your ordinary sadist killing animals for fun, and nothing religious. That's fine. Meaning Of Orange Paint UnknownNewsNet5, 8th May 2003. (Site slow—try this mirror)

May 3, 2003

Winning the peace

Iraq: The US government has launched its Arabic-language news service for its occupied territories and has shown a traditional level of respect for the mostly Muslim people there in its choice of partner - a fundamentalist Christian broadcaster dedicated to transmitting the evidence of God's presence in the world today.

Grace News Network proclaims that it will be a unique tool in the Lord's ministry plan for the world, according to the company's mission statement. Grace News Network provides networking links and portals to various ministries and news services that will be of benefit to every Christian believer and seeker of truth.

Some of the station's work is unlikely to be popular in Iraq:

While it's unclear whether Grace News Network actually produces any news, it has produced a documentary movie titled Israel: Divine Destiny which it showed at the National Press Club in September 2002. The film is about Israel's destiny and the United States' role in that destiny, according to Grace News Network.

U.S. Hires Christian Extremists to Produce Arabic News - AlterNet News, 2nd May 2003.

May 2, 2003

What part of "thou shalt not kill" do you not understand?

South Africa: A murderer who claimed that the Bible allowed him to shoot three black commuters on a bus because they were not human, has been sentenced to life imprisonment by an unimpressed judge.

Jan Gabriel De Wet Kritzinger - allegedly a member of Israel Vision, an extreme white Christian sect - said in his defence that black people are not my fellow men.

Racist SA killer sentenced for life - BBC News, 2nd May 2003.

May 1, 2003

In my inbox

A correspondent corresponds:

Subject: Seen this?
It's wrong...
There were at least 200 people on the hill - sitting on the acropolis, drumming and watching fire performers from about half three until quite late (we left at about half four).

About this Archive

This page is an archive of entries in the Love Thy Neighbour category from May 2003.

Love Thy Neighbour: April 2003 is the previous archive.

Love Thy Neighbour: June 2003 is the next archive.

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