Ex-Agape doomsday cult member John Mouhalos escapes jail term

Adelaid Now, Australia/May 2, 2013

A former member of the Agape doomsday cult who fled interstate has been spared a jail term.

The District Court this morning released John Mouhalos on a 12-month bond after he admitted breaching the terms of a suspended firearms sentence.

In 2010 Mouhalos - once a senior member of Agape Ministries - breached his two-year bond for aggravated assault and firearms charges by vanishing.

His disappearing act caught on within the cult - leader Rocco Leo and the rest of his inner circle fled to Fiji, where they remain to this day.

Mouhalos lived a frugal life in Melbourne, working in fruit and vegetables and hiring a small room.

In April, the cult tracked him down but, just 24 hours after he spurned its advances, police came to his door and arrested him.

Today, Judge Gordon Barrett further excused Mouhalos from being under the supervision of authorities.

Mouhalos can now return to Victoria and the life he has built since leaving the cult.

"Supervision is usually imposed when it's necessary to monitor an offender's behaviour to ensure he does not offend again," Judge Barrett said.

"You have stayed out of trouble for three years and, at the age of 55, it might be expected you will continue to stay out of trouble."

Mouhalos declined to comment as he left court.

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