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Doomsday Cult Leader Paul Mackenzie, Associates Charged With Torture and Murder of 191 Children

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The Kenyan government on Tuesday began handing over 429 bodies of members of a doomsday cult at the center of a legal case that has shocked the country.

Exhumed bodies from a vast rural area in coastal Kenya have shown signs of starvation and strangulation. Cult leader Paul Mackenzie is accused of asking his followers to starve themselves to death to meet Jesus and now faces charges that include murder.

One tearful family received four bodies that were loaded into a hearse from a morgue in the Indian Ocean town of Malindi, said an AFP correspondent at the scene.

They are the first bodies to be handed over to their relatives for burial after months of painstaking work to identify them using DNA.

“It is a relief that we finally have the bodies but it is also disheartening that they are only skeletons,” William Ponda, 32, told AFP, saying he has lost his mother, brother, sister-in-law and nephew in the tragedy.

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