Autopsies on corpses linked to Kenya starvation cult reveal missing organs; 133 confirmed dead

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Autopsies on corpses found in mass graves linked to a Kenyan cult have revealed missing organs and raised suspicions of forced harvesting, investigators said Tuesday as another 21 bodies were found. A total of 133 people have so far been confirmed dead in the so-called “Shakahola forest massacre” since the discovery of mass graves last month shocked the deeply religious Christian-majority country.

Police believe most of the bodies found near Malindi on Kenya’s Indian Ocean coast were followers of self-styled pastor Paul Nthenge Mackenzie, who is accused of ordering them to starve to death “to meet Jesus.”

While starvation appears to be the main cause of death, some of the victims — including children — were strangled, beaten, or suffocated, according to chief government pathologist Johansen Oduor.

Investigators said Tuesday they believed more bodies would be found in coming days.

“We have 21 bodies exhumed today from nine graves, and this exercise will continue tomorrow,” said regional commissioner Rhoda Onyancha. The latest exhumations took the overall toll to 133, she added.

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