The bodies of six children and a pregnant woman were found in a freshly dug grave in a remote, predominantly indigenous community on the Caribbean coast of Panama, possibly the sacrificial victims of a ritual performed by a religious sect, the Panamanian authorities said Thursday.
H/T: New York Times
On Thursday, prosecutors said the bodies of seven individuals had been found dead, including six minors between the ages of one and seventeen, and a pregnant woman who was the mother of five of the deceased children.
The bodies were found in a pit located in a remote camp near the Caribbean coast where police arrested 10 individuals, including a grandfather of one of the children killed.
“Interviews with community members revealed that the sect began practicing rituals more than three months ago, Mr. Baloyes said, though the kidnapping and torture started only last Saturday, when a sect member claimed to have received a message from God,” according to the New York Times.
The victims had been tortured and hacked with machetes by members of a religious sect called, “The New Light of God,” in order to make them “repent for their sins,” according to a prosecutor.
Bodies of six children and pregnant woman found in mass grave following 'exorcism' in #Panama.— Atlantide (@Atlantide4world) January 17, 2020
Ten suspected members of a religious sect, including a child, have been arrested. https://t.co/2sehK8PZhW pic.twitter.com/kwbqRQXxn3
Children's bodies found in pit after 'exorcisms' by Panama religious sect | Bodies of six children and one adult found in indigenous area | 10 members of evangelical ‘New Light of God’ group arrested | The Guardian https://t.co/2SoTJfMiim— Religion News (@religionnews) January 16, 2020