How John of God cult’s sick leader ran sex slave farms where young girls were held captive to produce babies like real life Handmaid’s Tale

How John of God cult’s sick leader ran sex slave farms where young girls were held captive to produce babies like real life Handmaid’s Tale

THE tales of John of God’s healing powers were legendary: he could scrape an eyeball with a kitchen knife to cure blindness, or wave a hand over a

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THE tales of John of God’s healing powers were legendary: he could scrape an eyeball with a kitchen knife to cure blindness, or wave a hand over a man’s shirt and heal his heart condition.

But the image of this “psychic surgeon” – real name Joao Teixeira de Faria – crumbled when over 600 women accused him of sexually abusing them during their so-called healing sessions… and of running a child sex slave farm in Brazil.

Some eye procedures saw Faria cut eye-balls with knives to cure blindness

In December last year, the floodgates opened on the so-called healer, with women from all over the world accusing him of assaulting them from the early 1980s up until 2018.

The victims ranged from as young as nine to 67 years old.

Though Faria has denied the allegations, all recount the same story of him inviting them for private consultations, turning them to face away from him and then performing sexual acts to “cure” them.

Here, Sun Online delves deeper into the life of ‘John of God’, the mystic healer now remanded in prison for four rape offences.

In another surgery, Faria used forceps to bloody the mouth of
AP:Associated Press

The sex slave farm where babies were sold for £40K

The 77-year-old cult leader from Abadiania, a tiny town southwest of the capital of Brasilia, has also been accused of running a “sex slave farm”.

refer to caption

A woman is repeatedly raped in a scene from The Handmaid’s Tale[/caption]

2018 Hulu

The series is set in Gilead, a totalitarian society, ruled by a fundamentalist regime that treats women as property of the state[/caption]

Like a real life version of the plot from dystopian novel The Handmaid’s Tale, young girls were allegedly held captive to produce babies sold to childless couples on the black market for up to £40,000 in Europe, USA and Australia. The mother would then allegedly be murdered.

Sabrina Bittencourt, 38, the Brazilian activist largely responsible for uncovering Faria’s murky world of abuse and corruption, took her own life at a hideaway in Spain a few days ago.

It has been alleged that the 77-year-old held girls captive to birth babies for childless couples before killing them
AFP – Getty
Sabrina Bittencourt reported the sexual abuse, claiming John of God had enslaved hundreds of young women

She claimed Faria would offer money to poor girls aged 14 to 18 to go and live in mineral mines or farms he owns in the Brazilian states of Goias and Minas Gerais.

There they would become sex slaves and be forced to get pregnant, then their babies would be sold to the highest bidder.

“In exchange for food, they were impregnated and their babies sold on the black market,” she said.

“Hundreds of girls were enslaved over years, living on farms in Goias, and served as wombs to get pregnant, for their babies to be sold.

“These girls were murdered after 10 years of giving birth. We have got a number of testimonies.”

Before her suicide, Bittencourt says she had many testimonies of women who had been abused by Faria at the Casa
AFP – Getty

Raping his daughter from the age of 10

Among the hundreds of allegations against Faria, were those of his own daughter, Dalva Teixeira.

She said that under the pretence of mystical treatments, he abused and raped her between the ages of 10 and 14.

Faria’s daughter Davla revealed she had been raped by her father under the pretence of mystical treatments

She claimed he stopped after she became pregnant by one of his employees, after which her father beat her so severely that she suffered a miscarriage.

“My father is a monster,” she said.

Celebrities flocked to be healed

For five decades, millions of people flooded in from all over the world to see this John of God perform “spiritual surgery” and give hope to those who had given up on conventional medicine.

But who was he and how did his powers become so famous that Bill Clinton and supermodel Naomi Campbell were rumoured to have visited him, and US TV star Oprah went to interview him?

As part of  her talk show in 2010, Oprah sat down with the rising star and expressed leaving with the feeling of “an overwhelming sense of peace”.

Many celebrities, including Oprah, visited John of God as they learnt about his healing power

‘God’s instrument’

Faria’s journey started as a teen when he left school and went to Abadiania.

There, he opened his “spiritual hospital”, the Casa de Dom Inácio de Loyola, named after Saint Ignatius, one of the 37 spirits Faria claimed to incorporate into his body during his psychic healing.

Faria insisted he was not the one curing those who come to him. “It’s God who heals. I’m just the instrument.”

Faria opened his clinic the Casa de Dom Inácio de Loyola, where we healed people by communicating with spirits
AFP – Getty

A benefactor secured land for him there in 1979, and the small town of 19,000 has since been receiving over 10,000 visitors a month, most of them from abroad.

Over the five decades he’s been practising his “healing”, Faria asked for no money but donations were welcomed, and the John of God economy in the area thrived.

There were the bottles of blessed waters, international tours, cafes, shops selling videos, biographies, crystals, books, jewellery and more, all to capture the minds of tourists.

Local businesses thrived as John of God related trinkets including crystals and water were bought by visitors
Getty – Contributor

His eyes turned from brown to blue

The stories of Faria’s “miracles” were many.

His eyes during the healings were reported to magically turn from brown to blue, his body taken over by the spirits of long-dead physicians who guided his actions, causing people to rise from wheelchairs, insomniacs to sleep and the ill to suddenly feel full of energy.

Juan Carlos Arguelles travelled thousands of miles from Colombia to see the healer because he suffered from keratoconus, which blurred his vision.

The image of the psychic surgeon came crashing down with allegations of abuse
AP:Associated Press

John of God scraped his eye with a knife and a week after the procedure, Juan said his vision had improved by 80 per cent and was getting better each day.

Another miracle story was that of Jana Jones, a Sydney-based mother, who was diagnosed with Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis in 2001, a disease with an average survival rate of three years.

She heard about Faria and flew to Brazil in 2002 where she was escorted to “The Casa”.

The healer performed surgery, without antiseptic, by placing forceps inside her nose and moving them around to cause bleeding until her mouth was filled with blood.

When she returned to Sydney, Ms Jones said she was overwhelmed with “feelings of love” and the doctor there said her condition had dramatically improved.

The small town was seeing 10,000 visitors a moth
Getty – Contributor

Exposed and on the run

But women began coming forward after Dutch choreographer Zahira Leeneke Maus said Faira had manipulated her into sex acts and raped her during a visit to his clinic whilst she was seeking healing for previous sexual abuses.

She claims she was chosen to have a private consultation because she “felt special” – and that in the horrific session he touched her genitals and forced her to have anal sex.

Hiding what had happened for four years, she said: “I was terrified of them sending bad spirits in my direction, wrecking my life.”

After the warrant for Faria’s arrest was issued in December last year, he went on the run for a week.

He allegedly withdrew £7 million from several bank accounts, leading police to believe he was planning to flee Brazil, or hide the money in case of compensation claims.

Investigators also found firearms and large quantities of cash in a house used by Faria as a spiritual retreat.

He eventually handed himself in on 16th December telling officers: “I surrendered to divine justice — and, as promised, I now place myself in the hands of earthly justice.”