July 21, 2023
João Teixeira de Faria, a popular Brazilian faith healer known as ‘John of God’ who was formerly promoted by Oprah, recently had 99 years added to his prison sentence for the rape of eight vulnerable individuals who sought his spiritual help between 2010 and 2018. John’s prison sentence now totals more than 370 years for mass sexual abuse and rape. In 2018, over 300 women, including his own daughter, accused him of sexual abuse after seeking his help. John was also accused of operating a baby trafficking ring and selling children to childless couples. He claimed to possess supernatural powers and offered a range of services, from spiritual healing to what appeared to be surgical procedures without anesthesia. He sold water blessed by him and herbal pills that reportedly brought in $40 million a year.
Journalist Sabrina Bittencourt whose investigations helped lead to the arrest of ‘John of God’, wrote: “Hundreds of girls were enslaved over years, lived on farms in Goias, served as wombs to get pregnant, for their babies to be sold. These girls were murdered after ten years of giving birth. We have got a number of testimonies.”
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