By Kay Dibben
A MOTHER who believes she is a queen of a worldwide religious organisation kept her two children out of school for six months to educate them to be “slaves”.
The woman told the children’s father that “where the children were going they only needed to have clean hearts, not reading and writing skills”, a court heard.
A Family Court judge has ordered the father have sole parental responsibility for the two girls, aged eight and 10, with the mother restrained from removing them from where they are living.
Both parents have been restrained from taking the children out of Australia and federal police have been asked to put the children’s names on an airport watchlist.
After the parents separated, the children lived with the mother for nine months until it was agreed they would live with their father.
But, in February last year, the mother took the children, who were in primary school, and disappeared, travelling across Australia with them for six months. While travelling between NSW, the Northern Territory and Victoria, the children did not attend school.
Late last year, she told the father she had joined a worldwide sovereign organisation with major religious influence.
The father claimed the children were moved 25 times and kept out of school “because they were being educated to be slaves”.
“We will set in place a new world order,” the mother allegedly told the father.
The father discovered that the leader of the religious organisation intended to allocate a large sum of money for each member of the planet – if the people accepted his demands.
He said the mother became obsessed with her work as “queen”, a title given to her by the organisation leader, and she travelled to several places, including Indonesia.
Justice Paul Cronin said that while everyone was entitled to their views, including about how to raise children, the court had to consider the best interests of the children. Australian children had a right to be educated, he said.
Justice Cronin said even allowing for the most unusual tastes in lifestyle, it was hard for him to consider it was appropriate for the children to be brought up within the organisation.
“These children were clearly disadvantaged by living with their mother,” the judge said.
He wanted the children’s names on an airport watchlist for two years because of evidence regarding the mother’s history of widespread travelling and “her itinerant and nefarious lifestyle”.
The children have been living with their father since he collected them in July last year and the judge ordered the parents make their own agreement about their contact with the mother.