Woman dies by exorcism... DATE: 04-15-91 LIMA, Peru (UPI) -- A woman bled to death during

Master Index Current Directory Index Go to SkepticTank Go to Human Rights activist Keith Henson Go to Scientology cult

Skeptic Tank!

Woman dies by exorcism... DATE: 04-15-91 LIMA, Peru (UPI) -- A woman bled to death during an exorcism conducted by members of her family who ripped out organs of her digestive tract in response to her demands, a police officer said Friday. The homicide officer, who asked that his name not be used, said the woman's husband, Pedro Carbajal, 40, and her 20-year-old and 14-year-old sons were suspects in her murder. Four other children of the couple watched the exoricism and death of their mother, the officer said. Benedicta Peralta Colonio, 38, died of blood loss Wednesday night in her home in the Lima district of Vitarte, 6 miles east of the capital center, after several organs were ripped from her body, the officer said. The officer said the family is part of a Pentecostal religious cult, led by Brazilian priest Jose de Souza Ribeiro, that urged the family to exorcise a demon that it blamed for chronic stomach cramps by ripping out Peralta's digestive tract. The officer said the woman participated in her own murder, screaming to her husband and sons to carry out the exorcism. ``Today is the end of the world and we have to go pure to heaven. Remove the devil from me. Remove him,'' the woman said, according to the officer. The policeman said family members contend Peralta threatened to kill her husband and sons if they did not perform the ritual. According to the officer, the family was in a ``psychological trance'' and was not under the influence of alcohol or drugs during the exorcism. After Peralta died, the husband and children burned her clothing and objects she frequently used, according to the officer, as part of the exorcism. The family then cleaned the house and planned to bury the body in a clandestine location, but later changed their minds and reported the death to police as a murder committed by unknown persons, he said. During the funeral, the victim's mother, Leonor Colonio, called De Souza a ``tremendous fake and swindler against believers.'' ``His pressure and influence over them is so great that his teachings caused this terrible death,'' she said. The police officer said de Souza is also currently under investigation.


E-Mail Fredric L. Rice / The Skeptic Tank