Sect Leader Gets 135 Years for
Associated Press/April 22, 2004
By Elliott C. McLaughlin
Atlanta -- The leader of a quasi-religious sect was sentenced
Thursday to 135 years in prison for molesting boys and girls at
the group's ancient Egyptian-style compound.
Malachi York, the 58-year-old "Master Teacher'' of the United
Nuwaubian Nation of Moors, will also have to forfeit the 476-acre
compound, adorned with pyramids and a sphinx.
He was convicted in January of child molestation and
racketeering after a trial in which 14 boys and girls from the
sect said York molested them from 1998 to 2002. He was sentenced
in Macon by U.S. District Judge C. Ashley Royal.
"We're very pleased with the sentence,'' U.S. Attorney Max Wood
The sect was founded as a Muslim commune in New York and moved
to Eatonton in 1993, where York set himself up as a messiah
Prosecutors said he recruited older girls to groom younger
girls for sex with him.
If girls pleased York, they got prizes such as diamond rings
from Wal-Mart or trips to a restaurant, witnesses testified. If
they angered him, their food was rationed and they had to fill out
forms for necessities such as sanitary napkins and doctor's
Members of the group were not paid for their work - instead,
York managed the money and decided who would be rewarded and who
would be punished, prosecutors said.
York's attorney, Adrian Patrick, had argued that York was
framed by his own son for refusing to fund the son's musical
career. The defense had also argued that the government was out to
get the mostly black sect because its beliefs were outside the
York incorporated Islam, Judaism, Christianity, Egyptian
mysticism and space aliens into his teachings.
Earlier this month, Kathy Johnson, York's "main wife,'' was
placed on 18 years of probation for child molestation.