Reporter describes perverse spanking sect

Focus Online
Marianna Deinyan
September 10, 2013
Translated from the German

RTL reporter Wolfram Kuhnigk has smuggled a hidden camera onto the Twelve Tribes property. Wolfram says he witnessed the systematic corporal punishment of children. In an interview with Focus Online, he spoke about “spanking rooms.” And he also says that tribes members break the will of the children while they are young making them docile members.

The children receive daily beatings and often whimper. Often they are thrashed with rods on the bare buttocks.

Reporter Wolfram Kuhnigk secretly infiltrated the Bible-based cult “Twelve Tribes in the summer of 2013 for two weeks. In order to gain entry, he claimed to be having a life crisis. Thus, the RTL journalist acquired the trust of the sect members. After weeks of email and many phone calls the Twelve Tribes finally invited him to the former Klosterzimmern monastery. The RTL journalist installed hidden cameras and documented the suffering and beatings of the children.

Then the baptized adults choose a suitable rod

Children enter a dark room with an adult. “Beating rooms were established specifically for this purpose,” says Kuhnigk. His concealed cameras have recorded the regular thrashings. The abusers usually sit on a chair. The child then must stand in front of the adult and then the adult pulls the child’s pants down. Then the adults look for a suitable rod with appropriate length and begin to beat the children. He painfully describes the images from the hidden cameras. Within two days, the concealed cameras capture a total of 84 strikes, according to the report. “The children are pummeled until they say what the adults want to hear,” said the reporter. The children are broken souls and the older boys are resigned. No child has defended himself in any form. Whoever turns away when an adult hits him/her, the child is returned to the ‘right position’ and punished again, said Kuhnigk. “Kuhnigk’s report is true,” says court director Helmut Beyschlag. “The beatings are systematic.”

The devil lurks in distraction

Whoever daydreams in the classroom or whoever fails to stand still during morning or evening gathering, an adult removes them from the room so they can “receive” a beating. After three to four minutes, the children return weeping and distraught. “Whoever is distracted and not paying attention, loses his focus on God,” according to the Twelve Tribes.

The adults use their faith in “Apostle” Elbert Eugene Spriggs to justify the punishment of their children.

Throughout the week there will be more interviews.

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