Expelled Sect Members Make Way to New York

New York Times, December 7, 1999
By John Kifner

Members of a doomsday sect, expelled from Israel this year, arrived at Kennedy International Airport on Sunday night after being expelled once again, this time from Greece.

Greek authorities rounded up 18 members of the Concerned Christians over the weekend, saying they feared that the group might be planning a mass suicide or other violence for the millennium. The officials said the group members were being deported after overstaying their residence permits. At a brief, impromptu news conference and meeting with worried relatives at the airport, group members denounced America as "the great Babylon." Then they departed in taxis, destination unknown.

In January, Israel arrested and deported 14 members of the apocalyptic sect, which is based in Denver and led by Monte Kim Miller, a former marketing executive who has claimed that he can speak in the voice of God. Miller's whereabouts are not known, although some relatives of sect members have said they think he is in Greece.

At the time, Brig. Gen. Elihu Ben-Onn, an Israeli police commander, said, "They planned to carry out violent and extreme acts in the streets of Jerusalem at the end of 1999 to start the process of bringing Jesus back to life."

The Israeli police said the sect members intended to create a catastrophe, believing that would hasten the second coming of Christ by provoking a deadly shootout with the police in the Old City.

After being returned to Denver, where they stayed for three weeks in a Holiday Inn, these members of the sect apparently moved to Greece, where a base had been set up in the village of Rafina, outside Athens.

Miller had earlier predicted that the apocalypse would come in October 1998, beginning with earthquakes in Denver. This did not materialize, but that fall, members of the group disappeared, emptying their houses and selling their possessions.


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