Cult case - Catherine Jane Stork receives five years in a plot to murder a federal prosecutor

News Summary/January 31, 2006
By Rick Ross

U.S. District Judge Malcolm Marsh on January 30, 2006 sentence a former follower of Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh to five years' probation for her role in an aborted 1985 murder plot to kill Charles Turner, the former U.S. Attorney in Oregon

Catherine Jane Stork, 60 was once a top lieutenant within the Rajneesh compound in Central Oregon, which operated from 1981 to 1985.

Stork faced life in prison.

Stork voluntarily returned to Portland from Germany to face 15-year-old federal charges, so that she might eventually be free to travel to her native Australia.

Germany had refused to extradite Stork since 1991.

Stork is the last of seven cult members indicted in the murder conspiracy. The others were sentenced to prison for two to five years.

Stork served some jail time in Germany. Judge Marsh also ordered her to perform 1,000 hours of community service.

Stork described her cult journey as a "descent into hell" in court statement before sentencing.

Former U.S. Attorney Turner did not oppose probation. "I don't want to be bothered with this anymore," he said.

Note: This is a summary of an article first published in The Oregonian January 31, 2006 titled "ex-Rajneeshee gets probation in murder plot"

Copyright © 2006 Rick Ross.

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