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© REUTERS/Robert Pratta
President of MIVILUDES Georges Fenech
One more case of misuse attempt of the law on the abuse of weakness

On 22 February 2011, on the initiative of MIVILUDES (Inter-Ministerial Mission Monitoring and Fighting against Sectarian Deviations), 70 policemen assisted by the CAIMADES (department of six persons inside the police specialized in sectarian deviations) invested the 'Centre for teaching biodynamism' in Nyons (Drôme region) and interrupted a training program for people lacking self-confidence. Four persons were put in custody, including the director of the Centre, a former 53-year old physiotherapist. The Centre had been created in 2007. They were suspected of 'potentially sectarian activity' and of 'overcharging training sessions' (500 EUR per week).

The raid was triggered by a local anti-sect movement.

While the neighbors considered the people running the Center 'quiet and discreet', the secretary general of MIVILUDES, Hervé Mashi declared that according to information collected in 2009, the founder of the Center seemed to exert mental control on the trainees and to abuse their weakness.

Similar raids orchestrated by MIVILUDES and anti-sect movements are not new. In October 2009, the 'Moulin des Vallées', a peaceful ecumenical monastery in Ile-et-Vilaine, was also targeted and in January 2010, the Centre 'Terre du Ciel' (Heaven's Earth) in Chardenous (Saône-et-Loire) was searched by MIVILUDES' troops. No 'victims' of such groups could ever be identified and no evidence of violation of the law on the abuse of weakness could be produced.