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Govt Departments (1) – The SA Police Service (SAPS)

For years the SA Police Service has maintained a strong Christian evangelicalist influence within its power structure, and nowhere can this be seen more demonstrably than in the structure of its “occult related crime” doctrine, policy and in the special investigative unit assigned to investigating alleged ‘occult related crimes’. The problem of course comes in where ordinary mundane crimes are blamed on perceived “Satanists”, Pagans and Witches who have nothing at all to do with the crimes being allegedly committed, and the perpetuation of deliberately concocted false information applied in the form of Christianist propaganda and the scapegoating of religious minorities and alternative lifestyles such as Goth and Emo etc.

The material provided by the SAPS in various forms, such as in the web page resource quoted directly below and also in several print publications, directly promotes the phenomenon known as “Satanic Panic” or “Satanic Ritual Abuse Hysteria” and contributes to the ongoing mistrust, suspicion, persecution and oppression of religious minorities and alternative lifestyles incorrectly perceived as “forms of Satanism” as a result of the dissemination of this material.

The SAPS by the actions of its Occult Related Crime Unit also has for decades acted as an evangelizing organization or “Christian warfare ministry” within the SAPS in all its many dealings with other government departments, the Press and audiovisual media such as TV and radio stations, where it has continued to misrepresent alternative lifestyle identity groups and minority religions as “pseudo-satanism”, despite years of fruitless attempts by lobby groups to engage with the SAPS on the harm done by their misguided efforts.

Half of the “cult” or “satanic behavior” described by the South African Police Service in the list of “warning signs” below of “occult involvement” sounds like ordinary teen behavior and fashion – and the other half sounds just like a regular day at an evangelical church or youth group!

(For a thorough debunking of this page and others just like it, kindly refer to the STAT document (“Satanism: The Acid Test”) available on this website.)

THIS is what the SAPS says about occult religion on its website: [The SAPS periodically remove this “Occult Related” page, conveniently it seems, every time it gets posted about and linked to by activists for religious freedom as proof of their underhanded activities. Then when things quieten down, they put it up again, unchanged. Of course it shows that they are trying to hide it. Why is that, SAPS?]


Objectives of the Investigation and Prevention of Occult-Related Crime by the General Detectives

The General Detectives aims to-

  • investigate occult-related crime effectively
  • promote the prevention of occult-related crime,
  • gather, manage, use And disseminate information on occult-related crime in order to meet the legal obligations of the occult-related Crime Unit, in conjunction with the South African Police Service Crime Intelligence Component, and
  • render services of a high standard to victims of occult-related crime.


Occult-related crime means any human conduct that constitutes any legally recognized crime, the modus operandi of which relates to or emanates primarily from any belief or seeming belief in the occult, witchcraft, satanism, mysticism, magic, esotericism and the like. Included in the scope of occult-related crime are ritual muti/medicine murders, witch purging, witchcraft-related violence and sect-related practices that pose a threat to the safety and security of the Republic of South Africa and/or its inhabitants.


Members who have undergone specialized training or who have specialized experience are assigned to the investigation and prevention of occult-related crime.

The strategy that is followed regarding the investigation and prevention of occult-related crime is to utilize the expertise of independent specialists/professionals or specialists in the South African Police Service. The strategy is mainly aimed at reducing, by any legitimate method, the incidence occult-related crime and empowering the victims of such crime. The effective combating and prevention of occult-related crime depend on a multi-disciplinary approach and the harnessing of the required expertise.


Note: This is merely a guideline and must be with other factors including behavioral and emotional changes over time.

  • Phone calls from persons requesting to speak with someone other than your child’s name. Callers may be enquiring for your child and using his/her satanic/demonic name.
  • Child troubled and obsessed with death. He/she writes essays and talks about death and/or the occult. What is in the heart and mind manifests in many ways.
  • Changes to the appearance of the child’s bedroom. Some bedrooms have pentagrams or other symbols that are taped, burned or painted on the floor under the carpet or bed or on the back of paintings or pictures and the walls are painted a dark colour. Candles and occult objects will be hidden away.
  • Child’s school locker and or school case contains satanic and ritualistic items.
  • Child experiences sudden gender confusion
  • Child displays cruelty towards animals
  • Child views a disproportionate number of videotapes/DVDs of horror movies/ heavy metal music
  • Child is engaged in illegal drug use and/or sexual activity
  • Child plays love fantasy games. (Fantasy games have no rules or guidelines. They inspire creativity lacking boundaries. The player is allowed to lose the boundary between reality and fantasy).
  • Child has an interest in computer. (History settings on the Internet browser will probably be cancelled to wipe evidence of visited sites. There will also be passwords on the computer and download folders)
  • Child greets with a left-hand horn signal. Wears only silver jewellery , not gold jewellery as gold is considered a Christian metal.
  • Child is fearful of things that bring happiness to other people like watching a beautiful sunset. He/she is openly hateful of Christians who are happy.
  • Books, videos, computer downloads dealing with rituals, necromancy and other occult practices.
  • Child is involved in or commit the mutilation and/or torture of animals.
  • Child is secretive and isolated.
  • Child rejects old friends and replaces them with secretive friends.
  • Excessive secrecy regarding new friends and activities.
  • Child is alienated, argumentative or displays violent behaviour.
  • Rejection of parental values.
  • Loss of sense of humour.
  • Change of school habits.
  • Child writes backwards.
  • Child carries the Book of Shadows. This is their most important book of poetry, prose, spells, incantations, meeting places, important dates.
  • There may be another book cover over it.
  • Self-mutilation/relentless cutting of self. (Cuts may be on the breasts, chest, ankles, and arms. Pain is the purification process to hell, and suicide the ultimate sacrifice to Satan)
  • Child has punctures from needles use to drain blood for consumption. Look out for marks on left side of body.
  • Obscene sensitiveness or paranoia concentrated toward authorities.
  • Birthdays might be filled with anxiety. (Birthdays are important days for satanists.)
  • Child is curious about drugs, specifically hallucinogens.
  • Depression.
  • Child starts to wear pale make-up and or dyes hair black.
  • Draping hair across the left eye.
  • Child listens to black metal or heavy metal with occult lyrics, symbols or references to occult worship. Posters of related groups are displayed in his/her room.
  • Child’s fingernails are painted black. The left-hand fingernails are longer than the right-hand fingernails. (The left side of body represents evil, as Jesus sits at the right-hand side of God.)
  • Child displays a pre-occupation with black clothing.
  • Child wears his/her left sleeve rolled up. (This can be used in school, malls, etcetera to signify membership to a satanic group).
  • Child uses candles of electrical lights.
  • Child uses satanic alphabet in his/her books.
  • Child’s personal hygiene deteriorates.
  • Child is sleepy and hazy.
  • Child’s school performance deteriorates and he/she displays increased aggression against authority figures at school.


Sects pose a real threat to people all over the world as they follow a subtle and operate in an organized and professional manner. It might take someone in a cult years to realize what is actually happening. As the intellect of cult members are attacked, they are less likely to come forward and complain about human rights abuses committed in a cult-related setting.

The loved ones of those who are seduced into a cult experience a sense of loss and frustration. Therefore cults create victims on many levels and trauma in many dimensions. In South Africa cults can be placed in three main categories.

  • Religion-based cults
  • Personality cults
  • Secular cults

It would be irresponsible to give a ‘one size fits all’ checklist on the characteristics of a cult /sect. However, when some of the following elements are present it might be worthwhile to become alarmed:

According to international standards a cult normally has the following five characteristics:

  • It uses psychological coercion to recruit and indoctrinate potential members.
  • It forms an elitist totalitarian society.
  • Its founder leader is self-appointed, dogmatic, messianic, not accountable and charismatic.
  • It believes the end justifies the means in order to solicit funds or recruit people.
  • Wealth does not benefit its members or society.

From the above characteristics the following programming actions might flow freely within the cult setting:

  • Hypnosis
  • Peer group pressure
  • Love bombing
  • Rejection of old values
  • Seeing family and friends as the enemy
  • Confusing doctrine
  • Gaining a superior but flawed knowledge of the Bible or other important book of re-election
  • Meta-communication
  • Removal of privacy
  • Time sense deprivation
  • Dis-inhibition
  • Uncompromising rules
  • Verbal abuse
  • Sleep deprivation and fatigue
  • Dress codes
  • Chanting and singing
  • Confession
  • Financial commitment
  • Finger pointing
  • Flaunting hierarchy
  • Isolation
  • Controlled approval
  • Change of diet
  • Unique games
  • No questions
  • Guilt
  • Fear
  • Replacement of relationships”

Yet these amateurs promote this nonsense as fact – and get taken seriously by non-Pagans, non-Satanists and non-Occultists because the cops “should” know what they are talking about! The problem is that they don’t. They know nothing about the occult except what they are taught to believe from an evangelical Christian perspective, and consequently they provide nothing more than biased inaccurate propaganda which results in the persecution of innocent people based on misunderstanding and ignorance. It’s shameful that this is allowed to continue in a secular state structure and in a democracy where all religions are Constitutionally guaranteed legal equality and protection against unfair discrimination!

How would Christians or Muslims like it if some other religious group crept into control of a state body like the SA Police and used its power to push misinformation and propaganda against Christianity or Islam as part of its drive against “crime”? THAT is the question Christians and Muslims who read this should be asking themselves… particularly if they think that the SAPS has it “quite right”…


Below is an example of just how harmful this propaganda material as propagated by the SAPS is, as demonstrated by Pagan, Francisco Fumarola:

“By using comments from eNCA’s facebook page, I am going to illustrate why biased reporting is ultimately bad for minority beliefs. Not only is there implied threats of violence, but the evangelical nature of “satan mongering” is made clear. Note that while the media instills a fear of “satanic threat”, Satanists are usually identified by silly signs as identified on the SAPS website.

Through arbitrary identification markers and “how to spot a satanist” information, innocent people can easily be accused of being Satanists similar to the killers and made suspect. This includes Paganism and the practice of rituals which may appear “Satanic” to outsiders. Note especially the violent comments and the one’s containing ideas of “rounding up the Satanists”

The religious and evangelical aim of Satan mongering. I am sure this will sit well with Pagan parents, Jewish parents or Hindu parents.

  • “we need bible study as a subject again like before”
  • “The ANC government chased God away from schools because of its obssession to please everyone in order to get votes. They must clean up this mess. Such incidents were rare while pupils were still allowed to pray to the only LIVING GOD at school”
  • A pity that the government took a soft stance against religion in schools. Christianity is alive and well in schools, contrary to popular belief. Satanism and Occultism are punishable offenses in many schools and especially Afrikaans ones. The media and the government have shown that there is institutionalized prejudice against Satanism and the 0ccult.
  • “Amen may god b with u xem a devil is a liaer xem”
  • “If you leave in country where religious studies is not thought in schools such immoral behaviours will be common”
  • “Religious instruction should still be taught in schools”
  • “as for those who say there’s no God n heaven or Satan n hell all I can say is I feel sorry for U coz U already burning in hell but U dnt knw it yet wait till U die n wake in some stincky black hole filled wit screaming people covered in flames reaching 12000 degrees then I’ll wish U can come back on earth n start life afresh the price of rejecting God is hell”
  • “Why morning prayers @ Skool were stoped , we need a Kristien Goverment”
  • The usual Illuminati conspiracy theory nonsense arises. People should really stop believe every piece of questionable data they read on the internet.
  • “When Mandela opened the door to freedom, Satan was already sitting in a dark corner waiting. Look at this… a statue of Mandela at the union buildings, sandton square, bloemfontein, USA, London, and about to be created on Table mountain and Temple of Solomon in Jerusalem. Watch 46664!”
  • “Yes its true mandela and obama,j zay,beyonce nd others ar satanist.the worship Baphomet.if u hav time guys.go 2 google nd check the meaning of 666.i blv mandela is a member of darknes.he is in our bank notes,he is loved the whl world.jst ask yrslf ths question.y barack obama was nt allowed 2 meet mandela whl he was in hospital,obama was here 2 collect mandelas soul.u c u hav 2 sell yr soul 2 the iluminate 4 thngs they do 4 u.mandela sacrifised with his grandchld 4 world cup remember her grandchld died on the opening of world cup if i stil remember.yes i am 100% sure dat mandela is devil worshiper.REMEMBER THIS “money is the roots of all evil”.u hav 2 sell yr soul.blv it or nt bt is true.”
  • “Satanist cult rule the world”
  • It is the end times jargon – dangerous and counterproductive mythology.
  • “the days will get shorter and signs of the end of days will be seen”
  • “Demons are now in all shapes and sizes.God protect us”
  • “The Devil alive…4nw…God is coming”
  • “De wrld is cumin 2 end”
  • Subtle implied threats or even overt threats that “Satanists” should be executed is very, very common in these kinds of threads. Fortunately, this particular one had less than usual.
  • “In the good old days, we would stone all satanists to death for misleading our children into committing such atrocities. That practice of stoning evil doers must be revived. The two children are victims of satanism. The liberal standards brought about by “over-democracy” have allowed stupid things like satanism an opportunity. Time to rid society of this evil. May our good and merciful GOD deliver us from evil.”
  • Longing for the good old days?
  • “Wanyela,jou moer wena satan,devil,diablo,fotshek hier so,stop using our Children,I will KILL u.”
  • This one was kind of funny, except I think the person meant it.
  • “Now find the cult, find where they are based and where they meet…and petrol bomb all of them!”
  • “Sum1 mst kil dat gal.”
  • Referring to accused.
  • Arrest people for simply being Satanists or at least suspected or accused of being Satanists. Prelude to witch-hunts?
  • “Arrest the whole cult.”
  • People believe everything they see on tv without question. They swallow the Satanism myth, hook, line and sinker.
  • “And that sataniist priest said on tv that they dont kill people for sacrifices bull s**t””
  • “wow!!!! As a youth we have 2 pray Satanism is growing day by day”
  • “Hmm! shocked at how popular these things have become”

Quite a propaganda show they have going. Of course with no facts at all to back it up – but then, the facts just might get in the way of the propaganda.

Here is an example of how even Christians are offended and disturbed by Kobus Jonker’s lack of compassion and inability to deviate from his path of religious persecution.

how to react to wiccans, pagans, and other religions – September 19, 2008

“I’m still recovering from Kobus Jonker’s presentation on satanism this morning. You know those times where you know that something is amiss, but everyone around you, and the speaker especially, seems to be so sure of what they are saying… well, that was something of what I experienced. Jonker’s extreme reaction towards wiccans and neo-pagans, of which I have the minimum knowledge, but I did meet some way back when the Spirtual Have for Independent Thinkers group on facebook was still running, kind of left me uncomfortable. The way in which he talked about these witches telling him that they are absolutely against the violence committed in the name of satanism, and how he then proudly told us how he just still held that they are wrong and evil, and locked them up for public nudity or whatever, even though some of them helped their unit at times.

And then Steve sent out a mail about this blog post, and told about the forum for interreligious dialogue they created, and the co-moderater is… a wiccan! I wonder who is letting the kingdom come, Jonker with his forceful approach, or Steve who rather choose dialogue? I appreciate it when Jonker is busy to stop the evil of violence and crime in this country, but I don’t think I appreciate it when he is so fast to label as evil those who fight against the evil of violence and rape with us.”

20131113 – Occult crime unit is offensive to common sense and morality

Decades after its formation, the Occult-Related Crime Unit (ORCU, founded by Kobus “Donker” Jonker in 1992) continues to waste public resources, misdirect police attention, and stigmatise young people who are by and large more misunderstood than malignant.
Amongst all the crimes that we can speculate police in this unit might have seen, there’s one we can be sure of – and it’s one that they are complicit in. The crime in question is against common sense and morality, and is vested in the reinforcing of a Christian evangelical “Satanic Panic”.

In the context of South Africa’s constitutionally-protected freedom of religion, restricting membership of a police unit to only Christians – and dedicating that unit to protecting a Christian version of reality – is itself worthy of special attention as an occult-related crime.

Because a unit can’t investigate itself, I’d ask the Minister of Police to consider funding a new Occult-Related-Related Crimes Unit, which I volunteer to lead. Our mission? To be ruthless in pursuing crimes related to simplistic, moralising, and religiously prejudiced views of crime, society at large, and especially the youth.

Even on the very fuzzy definition of “occult” used by ORCU, too few such crimes occur to merit the existence of a dedicated unit. But it is in the definition of these crimes, as well as the background metaphysics and psychology, that ORCU starts to appear just as spooky as the crimes and motivations ORCU exists to combat.

In response (I presume) to a fairly constant barrage of criticism on social media, the South African Police Service (SAPS) removed the web page that gave us our best insight into how a unit in a 21st-century police force is being guided by ideas from the Dark Ages.

But thanks to the Wayback Machine, we can see not only that “Child has an interest in computer” is a sign that said child might be involved in a cult, but also that this and other equally ridiculous diagnostic advice has remained unchanged since September 2004 (the archived page from then – the earliest date the page was captured – being identical to the one that was removed in November 2013):

I don’t mean to dispute that adolescents, and others, commit crimes in the service of motivations they themselves think of as occult. But when they do so, why is it that this motivation is singled out for special attention? We don’t have a jealousy-related crimes unit, or a greed-related, tender-related, BEE-related, or alien-related unit – even though all of these provide possible motivations to commit crimes, mostly with far greater regularity than the occult would.

Then, if we find that a crime is committed because the guilty party thought themselves under some supernatural instruction, we know full well what to do next: arrange for that person to get the psychological help they clearly need, alongside whatever other sentence is appropriate.

Diagnosis and treatment of this particular confusion is not within the typical police-person’s field of expertise, perhaps especially when that police-person is selected explicitly because they hold a competing – and no less bizarre, to some – set of metaphysical beliefs.

As mentioned above, we have freedom of religion in South Africa. You can be a Satanist if you like, and if you were refused employment on those grounds, the person refusing you would be acting illegally. Hell (sorry), refusing you entry into ORCU would probably be illegal too.

But because of the strongly Christian bias of ORCU, and government in general, you’d of course keep your exercising of freedom of religion to yourself. If you’re a child, though – especially a child unfortunate enough to have parents who take SAPS’s word for these things – you might find yourself described as a Satanist or cult member through no fault of your own.

The warning signs for parents include your using a computer, engaging in sexual activity, watching horror movies, losing your sense of humour and “rejecting parental values”. In other words, being a teenager is a warning sign. Make sure to only part your hair to the right, because “draping hair across the left eye” is another dead giveaway.

It’s also important that you avoid getting a nickname at school, because “phone calls from persons requesting to speak with someone other than your child’s name” is apparently a warning sign for parents that you’re being contacted by your “satanic/demonic name”.

The document also speaks of cults, that come in “religion-based, personality, or secular” versions. I can’t imagine what a secular cult might be, but suspect it has something to do with Idols, or MasterChef, given that cults can involve “unique games”, “dress codes” and “chanting and singing”.

More seriously: these attempted analyses of occult motive are premised in an occult view themselves, namely that of Christianity. The occult, and what is problematic about it, is being defined in a completely partisan way, by an agency of a Government committed to freedom of religion.

It is undeniable that some practitioners of any given occult view engage in harmful behaviour. It would nevertheless be untrue and unfair for us to generalise from those cases, concluding that the entire set of occult practises should be criminalised – especially if we do so from a position of known bias.

Lastly, the vulnerable group here is the youth, who are already besieged by insecurity around their identities. The ORCU document told parents – in a country where homophobia is virtually endorsed by the President, and corrective rapes a scourge – that “child experiences sudden gender confusion” is a warning sign of the occult.

It’s therefore not simply the case that ORCU is a waste of resources that could better be deployed elsewhere. The unit, and its core beliefs, are themselves so offensive to common sense and morality that one might call it a crime.

The author teaches at the University of Cape Town. Read his blog, Synapses. You can follow him on Twitter @JacquesR.”

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