Waco cult leader `had lust for virgins'

Inquest told of `Sinful Messiah who impregnated 400 women'

Followers of the cult leader David Koresh believed he had impregnated 400 virgins as "the sinful Messiah", an inquest into the deaths of 23 Britons at the Branch Davidian compound in Waco, Texas, was told yesterday.

Koresh, 33, claimed he had the right to impregnate young women as part of his religious function, Professor Albert Waite told the inquest in Manchester. He said he heard the claims after infiltrating a meeting of the cult outside the Seventh Day Adventists' Newbold College in Bracknell, Berkshire, where he was principal lecturer.

Two of the Britons who died at Waco were students at the college, and the professor said he also knew some of the other victims.

Koresh had "set himself up as the sinful Messiah" and said "he himself would fulfil the prophecy of the second coming of Christ", Professor Waite told the inquest. He advocated multiple sex partners, at least for himself.

He told how Koresh had used a man called Stephen Schneider to recruit theology students from the Seventh Day Adventist Church, from which Koresh had been expelled in 1981.

Schneider, a former student expelled for being drunk and disorderly, had posed as a Seventh Day Adventist and arrived at the college carrying a Bible.He was a "wolf in sheep's clothing", the professor said.

His request for a room in which to hold Bible classes was refused after warnings about Koresh from church elders, but he held meetings in a house outside college. Koresh himself was said to have visited the house.

One of the victims of the Waco siege and fire was a student called John McBean, 27, from Preston, Lancashire. He had tried to get the professor to go to the US to hear things that would "change his life".

"He got upset when I didn't accept Koresh had the right to impregnate young ladies as part of his religious function," he said.

He said Koresh and his followers had targeted the Seventh Day Adventists - from whom the Davidian sect split in the 1930s - and used psychological ploys to lure recruits.

"I beieve Koresh and Schneider led the 23 victims on a road only the very strong could get off, and only if they were allowed to," the professor added.

Earlier, Gale Monbelly told the hearing she was convinced her sister Alison, 31, who died in the compound, was being held against her will. She said she discovered Koresh had been holding her sister's money and passport and that she was not allowed out of the compound. Alison, from London, had joined the Seventh Day Adventists and began attending Bible study groups with other people who were to become victims. Despite being warned by a man who had been to Waco that Koresh was "dangerous and manipulative" she went there in September 1991.

When she returned, she explained the origin of Koresh's assumed name. She said David was from King David in the Bible and that Koresh represented the last sound a person made when life left their body.

She told her that Koresh smoked and drank alcohol and played electric guitar in a band.

"She said from his appearance you would not think he was a religious leader," Ms Monbelly told the inquest. "You would have to listen to what he said to know he was a religious man." In March of the following year, her sister was told by Koresh to returnto Waco. "When they got the call to go back they were told a big event was to happen and they were to get out there as quickly as possible."

Ms Monbelly said: "There is no doubt in my mind that when she went back for the last time she was being held against her will. I think she was very scared. She told me she wasn't allowed out."

She said her sister told her that children in the compound were disciplined and well-behaved. They were not allowed Coca-Cola and sweets.

Ms Monbelly cried as she told the inquest: "I have lost my best friend and closest sister and it is very hard to start the day knowing I will never talk to her, see her, laugh with her or just basically love her."

The inquest continues today.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
News
A poster by Durham Constabulary
news
Arts and Entertainment
books New York Times slammed over summer reading list
Sport
Cameron Jerome
footballCanaries beat Boro to gain promotion to the Premier League
Arts and Entertainment
Performers drink tea at the Glastonbury festival in 2010
music
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
ebookA unique anthology of reporting and analysis of a crucial period of history
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Guru Careers: Software Developer / C# Developer

£40-50K: Guru Careers: We are seeking an experienced Software / C# Developer w...

Guru Careers: Software Developer

£35 - 40k + Benefits: Guru Careers: We are seeking a Software Developer (JavaS...

SThree: Trainee Recruitment Consultant / Resourcer

£18000 - £23000 per annum + Commission: SThree: As a Trainee Recruitment Consu...

Ashdown Group: UI Developer - (UI, HTML, CSS, JavaScript, AngularJS)

£25000 - £40000 per annum: Ashdown Group: UI Developer - (UI, JavaScript, HTML...

Day In a Page

Abuse - and the hell that came afterwards

Abuse - and the hell that follows

James Rhodes on the extraordinary legal battle to publish his memoir
Why we need a 'tranquility map' of England, according to campaigners

It's oh so quiet!

The case for a 'tranquility map' of England
'Timeless fashion': It may be a paradox, but the industry loves it

'Timeless fashion'

It may be a paradox, but the industry loves it
If the West needs a bridge to the 'moderates' inside Isis, maybe we could have done with Osama bin Laden staying alive after all

Could have done with Osama bin Laden staying alive?

Robert Fisk on the Fountainheads of World Evil in 2011 - and 2015
New exhibition celebrates the evolution of swimwear

Evolution of swimwear

From bathing dresses in the twenties to modern bikinis
Sun, sex and an anthropological study: One British academic's summer of hell in Magaluf

Sun, sex and an anthropological study

One academic’s summer of hell in Magaluf
From Shakespeare to Rising Damp... to Vicious

Frances de la Tour's 50-year triumph

'Rising Damp' brought De la Tour such recognition that she could be forgiven if she'd never been able to move on. But at 70, she continues to flourish - and to beguile
'That Whitsun, I was late getting away...'

Ian McMillan on the Whitsun Weddings

This weekend is Whitsun, and while the festival may no longer resonate, Larkin's best-loved poem, lives on - along with the train journey at the heart of it
Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath in a new light

Songs from the bell jar

Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath
How one man's day in high heels showed him that Cannes must change its 'no flats' policy

One man's day in high heels

...showed him that Cannes must change its 'flats' policy
Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Dominic Rossi of Fidelity says his pressure on business to control rewards is working. But why aren’t other fund managers helping?
The King David Hotel gives precious work to Palestinians - unless peace talks are on

King David Hotel: Palestinians not included

The King David is special to Jerusalem. Nick Kochan checked in and discovered it has some special arrangements, too
More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years

End of the Aussie brain drain

More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years
Meditation is touted as a cure for mental instability but can it actually be bad for you?

Can meditation be bad for you?

Researching a mass murder, Dr Miguel Farias discovered that, far from bringing inner peace, meditation can leave devotees in pieces
Eurovision 2015: Australians will be cheering on their first-ever entrant this Saturday

Australia's first-ever Eurovision entrant

Australia, a nation of kitsch-worshippers, has always loved the Eurovision Song Contest. Maggie Alderson says it'll fit in fine