At least twelve members of a religious group were arrested on Tuesday following the death of an eight-year-old girl in Australia.
Elizabeth Struhs had type 1 diabetes and died on January, 2022 after she was denied insulin for almost a week in her home in Rangeville, south of Brisbane.
Jason and Kerrie Struhs, Elizabeth’s parents, were charged with murder, torture, and failing to provide necessities of life.
Queensland Police said the 12 people aged between 19 and 64 were responsible for Elizabeth’s death as they knew about her deteriorating medical condition but refused Elizabeth’s medication because they believed that she “would be healed by God”.
Australian authorities weren’t contacted until around 5:30 PM on January 8, a day after Elizabeth died, and were allegedly singing and praying to God to heal her while she was dying.
Jayde Struhs, Elizabeth’s sister, said in a fundraiser to support her siblings that her extended family had been left “completely shattered and heartbroken”.
“We have faced the brutal reality that the people who should have protected her did not, and we may never know the full extent of what took place,” Jayde said.
Jayde added her parents were part of a “fear-driven and controlling” cult named “The Saints” that took religion to extremes.
The 12 people arrested on Tuesday will appear in an Australian court on Wednesday.
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