Friday, 29 January 2016

Aravindan Balakrishnan carried out a "brutal" campaign of violence and "sexual degradation" against women for more than 30 years.
17:37, UK, Friday 29 January 2016

Aravindan Balakrishnan leaves Southwark Crown Court in London
A Maoist cult leader who raped followers and held his daughter captive for three decades has been jailed for 23 years.
Judge Deborah Taylor told 75-year-old Aravindan Balakrishnan he had "shown no remorse whatsoever" for his "grave and serious crimes".
When the Maoist commune called the Workers Institute, based in Brixton, south London, was raided in 1978, Balakrishnan dominated and imposed his will on a small group of women for the next 35 years.
"You turned into a largely house-bound demi-god or dictator," the judge said.
Describing the full brutality of the abuse he inflicted on his victims, she said he "engendered a climate of fear, jealousy and competition for approval".
Katy: My Life in Captivity
The sentencing came as his daughter, waiving her anonymity for the first time, told Sky News how he cruelly deprived her of any contact with the outside world.
Katy Morgan-Davies described her father as a as a "narcissistic psychopath... obsessed with controlling people".
The court heard that at the age of 14, Balakrishnan told her she was responsible for her mother's death.
Judge Taylor said his treatment of her amounted to "a catalogue of mental and physical abuse", adding: "You deprived her of love."
Ms Morgan-Davies was terrified if she went out of the house that she would spontaneously combust or be killed by death squads.
The court heard how he brainwashed his followers into thinking he had God-like powers.
A doctor's assessment concluded he has a "narcissistic personality disorder" and a "grandiose" sense of his own self-importance.
He invented a supernatural force called Jackie who he said could trigger natural disasters if he was disobeyed.
Cult Leader's Daughter: 'He Was A Psychopath'
Known as Comrade Bala, Balakrishnan carried out a "brutal" campaign of violence and "sexual degradation" against women for many years, the court heard.
He was convicted of a string of sex attacks, cruelty to a child under 16 and false imprisonment following a trial at London's Southwark Crown Court at the end of last year.
Balakrishnan was also found guilty of two counts of assault occasioning actual bodily harm (ABH).
His wife, Chandra Balakrishnan, speaking outside court, called his sentence a "cruel miscarriage of justice" and said Aravindan was "innocent of the lies".
:: You can watch a special report, Katy: My Life In Captivity, on Sky News at 6.30pm.