According to a detailed report on the Yeshivah World News web site, sources have confirmed two children of the Teller family that recently escaped from the cult in Guatemala were spending Shabbos in the Catskills, when the incident occurred.
Sources close to YWN have said that on Shabbos morning, a 12-year old girl and a 14-year-old boy were discovered missing. Police were called, and an investigation is underway. It has been confirmed that the two children were seen entering a vehicle on Friday night (early Shabbos morning) at around 3:32 am.
The family had been spending Shabbos with professional therapists in the Catskills, along with other previous Lev Tahor escapees.
A few weeks ago, a girl from the same family was kidnapped as well. She was later found and reunited with her mother.
In a continued effort to keep abreast of this developing story, YWN has reported that the Teller children arrived in the United States last month, following an intense international effort to rescue them from the Cult, currently located in Guatemala.
The children are the 4 daughters and 2 sons of Mrs Sara Feige Teller, a sister of current Lev Tahor leader, Nachman Helbrans. She is married to Rabbi Aron Aryeh Teller, rosh yeshivah of Lev Tahor.
Rebbitzen Teller escaped the cult several months ago and had been thwarted on several attempts to rescue her children, on one occasion even being attacked by cult members armed with guns, knives and throwing rocks.
A massive raid by over 100 heavily armed Guatemalan police was unsuccessful in rescuing the remaining three children as cult leaders had likely moved them out of the compound prior to police arriving outside the compound’s barbed wire fence.
Then, Rabbi Teller and the 3 girls, accompanied by a woman who posed as their mother, were arrested as they attempted to cross the border into Mexico with false passports.
Tragically, it appears the saga is not over and the Lev Tahor Cult is continuing to inflict horror on the lives of the these children.
Lev Tahor practices include women and girls wearing black head-to-toe coverings day and night, arranged marriages between teenagers, and a violent form of Malkos. Lev Tahor only permits certain fruits and vegetables to be eaten, as well as whole wheat flour made into bread with a stone press.
Former members of Lev Tahor (who either escaped or were otherwise expelled) do not recall learning Mishnayos or Gemara, nor any Mitzvos Bein Adam LeChaveiro.
They spend the majority of the day in deep prayer and are only allowed to study certain sections of the Chumash, with Lev Tahor commentary.
Internal documents of Lev Tahor show that Shlomo Helbrans made his followers swear and sign to uphold the following principles among others.
(1) Everyone must negate his or her mind and mind thoroughly and completely, to the leader of Lev Tahor.
2) They must subjugate soul, spirit, and will.
3) Each man accepts upon his descendants and descendant’s descendants until the end of all generations to be subjugated under the will of Lev Tahor’s leader.. this should be said openly to the leader himself.
4) Everyone must be ready at any time and moment of 24 hours of the day, whether on the Shabbath and Yom Tov, summer and winter, healthy or sick, to do the will of the leader.
5) Whether the person is a young man or an old man, virgins and women they must accept to do the will of the leader.
6) They must agree to throw away all his physical needs, including eating sleep and rest until he fulfills the desires the leader.
7) It is the obligation of each of them at the beginning of the morning prayers to recite and accept upon themselves all of the above with full mouth and supreme joy. (YWN)