The Age: Court Told of Sect Security Measures

From XFamily - Children of God

Court Told of Sect Security Measures

The Age/1992-06-24

By Andrew Bock

The leader of the Children of God sect, Moses David, would not come to Australia because the sect feared he could be killed, a teenage member of the sect told the Children's Court yesterday.

The 13-year-old girl told the court "there is a lot of people who don't like him and who would like to get him". Mr Howard Draper, representing the police, said the sect had security measures and received advice about secrecy distributed by Moses David.

Mr Draper cited the following maxims about security which he said were written and distributed to sect members by David: "The enemy is always listening. Don't tell him what he wants to know." "A real revolutionary (for God) must be revolutionary enough to pretend not to be revolutionary when dealing with the system." The 13-year-old girl has been cross-examined for two days and was questioned for more than three hours by Mr Draper yesterday.

Police are applying for a supervision order to monitor the welfare of eight child members of the sect, aged between two and 14, on the grounds that their psychological and emotional welfare is at risk. The case is expected to last at least 12 days.

The court was told that the girl had been living in a home with 28 people -six adults and 22 children. Mr Draper said the home had a living room, a play room and five bedrooms. He said there had been 50 to 60 members of the sect living in a house in Panton Hill.

Mr Draper questioned the girl about the sect's disapproval of "systems schools" (state and private secondary schools) and the purported shunning of tertiary education. He said Moses David had described modern education as "diabolical" and "anti-Christ".

The girl said she could choose to go to university if she wanted. She said Moses David had not told them universities were evil but she thought they exposed one to sin.

Mr Draper suggested that the children were not able to choose anything -that their parents told them what they could do. The girl said she often chose what to do, then asked her parents' permission.