Do you remember “Satanic Ritual Abuse”? Twenty years ago, stories of devil-worshippers abusing children and sacrificing babies swept across Britain and America. Police and social workers were caught up in the panic. Children were snatched away from their parents on the basis of worthless testimony extracted from them by gullible “experts”. It was years before the truth emerged: that, despite the occasional appropriation of occult symbols by solitary child abusers, there was no network of murderous covens and (to the best of our knowledge) no babies had been ritually sacrificed to Satan in the UK.
This week, however, four people from Camarthenshire were convicted of serious sex offences, some of which were accompanied by Satanic rituals. Here’s the Daily Mail’s account of what went on:
The leader of a Satanic sex cult is facing a lengthy jail sentence after being found guilty of multiple counts of rape and child abuse.
Colin Batley, 48, exercised absolute control over his sect in a seaside cul-de-sac – abusing and exploiting helpless children as ‘sex toys’ for more than a decade. He was found guilty yesterday of 35 sex offences against children and young adults. Yet social services were alerted to Batley’s child abuse in 2002 – and took no action.
As a consequence, the former Tesco security guard was allowed to continue ‘preying on the young and vulnerable’ for a further eight years – with the full support of wife Elaine. At their semi in Kidwelly, South Wales, he would dress in hooded robes, chant before an altar and then orchestrate or participate in group sex with his female followers, including Jacqueline Marling and Shelly Millar.
One helpless girl was ‘initiated’ when she was just 11 and threatened with death by ‘cult assassins’ if she did not comply. At least two of his young victims gave birth as a result of the ‘systematic and prolonged abuse’.
Winner of the 2005 Best New Canadian Christian Author Award.
Damian Thompson writes: