The Russian special forces carried out a special operation today to arrest a former traffic cop who heads a sect in Siberia who claims he is Jesus Christ.
Sergei Torop – known as Vissarion – and his closest adviser, Vadim Redkin, a former rock musician, were reportedly arrested and flown away under armed guard.
Wispy-haired Torop, 59, is a retired Red Army conscript and traffic cop who claimed he was born again in 1990 as a literal reincarnation of the Son of God.
Russian agents conducted a large-scale military operation involving four helicopters and dozen of heavily armed troops that stormed the remote site called Sun City.
Sergei Torop (pictured), a cult leader named Vissarion who claims to be the reincarnation of Jesus Christ, was arrested in Siberia today
Russian agents conducted a major military operation using four helicopters and dozens of heavily armed troops
The Russian National Guard, a force under the command of Vladimir Putin, but also the FSB security service, appeared to be involved in the operation.
The Russian investigative committee said the sect was being investigated for "psychological violence" which was causing "serious health damage" to some supporters.
Sergey Torop and two other sect leaders, Vadim Redkin and Vladimir Vedernikov, were arrested in the raid, a statement said.
They are also being investigated on suspicion of "causing serious injury to two or more people."
The footage showed masked special forces with machine guns on the group's territory in the remote Kuraginsky District of the Krasnoyarsk Territory in Siberia.
Other officers appeared to be in civilian clothes.
"There are 50 avtozaks (cells on wheels), 50 buses, an ambulance and medical staff," said local Alexander Staroverov
Torop and Redkin "were put in helicopters and taken in an unknown direction," he said.
It was not immediately clear whether other cult followers were arrested.
The Russian National Guard, a force under the command of Vladimir Putin, but also the FSB security service, appeared to be involved in the operation
Torop and his closest adviser, Vadim Redkin, a former rock musician, were reportedly arrested and flown away under armed guard
The smoking and alcohol banned group has been in Siberia for years and it is unclear why the Russian authorities now acted in an early morning raid.
He claims to have 5,000 followers, several hundred of whom are in log cabins in the remote & # 39; Sun City & # 39; camp. live in Petropavlovka, about 2,600 miles east of Moscow.
It is estimated that there were 90 families on the site today, which authorities raided. Other followers of the Messiah live in nearby villages.
He heads the so-called Church of the Last Testament and has written a ten-volume sequel to the Bible.
Three years ago the cult leader told the BBC: “We have a school of noble girls here.
“We prepare girls to be future women, future brides for worthy men.
"She must understand not to rise above the man, not to be proud of her independence, but to be shy, inconspicuous and weak."
Torop claims to have 5,000 followers, several hundred of whom are in wooden huts in the remote & # 39; Sun City & # 39; live in Petropavlovka, about 2,600 miles east of Moscow
Vissarion is said to have two women with six children who once married a 19-year-old who has lived with him since he was seven.
He lives in a comfortable chalet, while his followers live in wooden huts in one of the coldest regions of Russia and the winter temperatures drop to minus 50 ° C.
Torop had an awakening after being fired as a night-shift traffic cop in the Siberian city of Minusinsk.
God had sent him to earth to teach humanity about the evils of war and the havoc we are wreaking on the environment, he claimed.
The cult leader canceled Christmas and replaced it with the anniversary of his first sermon on August 18.
He claims that Mary, mother of Jesus, is his own mother. Official records show that his birth mother was named Nadyezhda.
He has supporters in Germany and several other European countries.
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