France plans crackdown on cults after ‘spiritual community’ involved in Alex Batty case

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President Emmanuel Macron’s government has proposed legislation to fight “cultish deviation”.

This includes the introduction of a new offence of exercising “psychological control” — which comes with a maximum sentence of three years in prison.

The Interministerial Mission for the Vigilance and the Fight Against Cultish Deviation — a French government agency which is dedicated to monitoring cult movements — said it had 4,020 reports of such communities operating in the country in 2021.

This is 33 per cent up on 2020 and 86 per cent higher than in 2015.

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