Spiritual healer bags 118 years imprisonment for serial rape of followers
Renowned Brazilian “spiritual healer” Joao Teixeira de Faria, also known as “Joao de Deus” or “John of God,” has been handed a sentence of more than 118 years in prison after being found guilty of sexually abusing multiple female followers.
Faria, 81, operated a “spiritual hospital” in the town of Abadiania, where he purportedly treated tens of thousands of individuals each month. His fame reached international levels after being featured by US TV personality Oprah Winfrey in 2013.
However, hundreds of women ultimately came forward, exposing the alleged sexual coercion they experienced from Faria as part of their “healing” process. These incidents date as far back as 1973.
Arrested in 2018, Faria, who maintains his innocence, had been placed under house arrest. On Friday, Judge Marcos Boechat of the Goias state criminal court sentenced him to a staggering prison term of 118 years, six months, and 15 days for charges that included rape, rape via fraud, and rape of a vulnerable individual.
The court’s ruling encompassed a total of 17 cases against Faria, who had already received several previous criminal convictions. In addition to the lengthy sentence, the judge ordered Faria to pay his victims damages amounting to 100,000 reais (approximately $20,500).