New Mexico sect leader facing sex abuse charges released

February 3, 2020 GMT

GRANTS, N.M. (AP) — A leader in a rural New Mexico paramilitary religious sect with anti-Semitic leanings and who facing child sex abuse charges has been released on house arrest.

The Gallup Independent reports Peter Green, also known as Mike Brandon, was released last week by State Judicial District Judge Amanda Sanchez Villalobos despite protests from state prosecutors and sheriff deputies.

Authorities say he was a lieutenant colonel in the Aggressive Christianity Missions Training Corps near Grants, New Mexico.

Peter Green was arrested in the 2017 raid of the religious compound by the Cibola County Sheriff’s Office and charged with multiple counts of criminal sexual penetration of a minor.

He has pleaded not guilty.

Former sect members said the abuse dated back years, while Cibola County Undersheriff Michael Munk said the former members described leaders treating followers like slaves and physically beating children.

Two other leaders are serving prison sentences.