State responsibility to protect citizens against destructive cults

Acts of the conference

State responsibility to protect citizens against destructive cults:

Analysis of present and possible future models

12 April 2008

 Grand Hotel Duomo, Via Santa Maria, 94, Pisa (ITALY)

Organised by


Associazioni per la Ricerca e l’Informazione sulle Sette


Sponsored by the French government and the following Italian public Administrations:






Concentric circles are circles with a common centre. This image can apply to FECRIS which has rippled along since its foundation in 1994 creating from so few, a gathering of so many, today. It has also overlapped and attracted friends from the other side of the Atlantic who are particularly welcome as they see our combat from afar and their objective comments on our European efforts are greatly appreciated.[1]


Because of their geographically scattered localisations and a general lack of interest from the political class, the organisation of this conference was an enormous challenge for our two Italian members, Aris-Veneto and Aris-Toscana, and our general secretary Mireille Degen, who, because she speaks Italian, was the main contact person during its preparation. The challenge successfully reached its climax in Pisa on 12 April, thank you! I should not forget to mention our treasurer, the speakers and all of you, about 140 people from 23 countries, who came to listen, to discuss and to think together.


Although we do not interfere with the views of the speakers, we nevertheless feel obliged to dissociate ourselves with some declarations made in the following Acts because certain ideas expressed are in contradiction with our own vocation. Some speakers are new to the subject and seem to be rather confused with regard to the difference between the declarations of certain academics and the motivations of a federation of associations, like FECRIS, whose main combat is to assist families negatively affected by destructive, manipulative cults and sects.


Although, according to its statutes, FECRIS is non-political, in the present troubled climate when the European effort is weakened by populists and separatist tendencies, we think that FECRIS, through the general goodwill of its members, is an example of peacefulness and pluralism versus totalitarianism.

Finally, I want to thank all those who provided the financial basis for this conference: the French government, the Italian public Administration of the provinces of Veneto, Rimini and Pisa and the generosity of the organising associations who went to so much trouble to contribute. I hope that they will in one way or another benefit from the discussions in this gathering.


Friedrich Griess





ALESSANDRINI Maurizio – President of the FA.VIS Association (IT)

Welcome opening


KATZ Catherine – Secretary General of MIVILUDES (FR)

How France deals with the cultic front on the European Institutional scene


POLLINA Sergio – author and expert (IT)

Sectarianism against freedom:is there any possible defence?


NACCI Emanuele – Criminal Lawyer and Constitutionalist – Bari (IT)

The abrogation of the Italian law identifying illicit influence (subjugation).  Individual freedom: to what extent is it safeguarded?  Remarks, proposals – initiatives


PITZINGER Peter – Head of Landesstelle für Sektenfragen (AT)

Observation of Religious groups by the State and freedom of religion – Presentation of the Austrian Model.


FREDERIC André – Member of the House of Representatives and President of the Task Force in charge of the monitoring of the Parliamentary Committee of Inquiry’s recommendations (BE)

State of the cultic situation in Belgium: feedback provided by the public authorities


WESTERHOLM  Barbro – Member of the Swedish Parliament (SE)

What Swedish society does to prevent manipulative groups from harming people


MONVOISIN Richard – Doctor of didactic sciences and part-time lecturer at the University Grenoble 1, (FR)

Prevention and awakening of critical judgement: outline of a teaching kit on the lexis used by cults


From: BrahmaKumaris.Info

What the Brahma Kumaris don’t want the United Nations to know: how “Shiv Shakti Army” seeks to “conquer over the world, 3 square feet at a time”


AVETA Achille (IT) – Free-lance author

The Theocratic War Doctrine: Why Jehovah’s Witnesses Lie in Court”


POZZA TASCA Elisa, (IT) – President of “Penelope – Associazione Nazionale delle Famiglie e degli Amici delle Persone Scomparse” (NGO for Families and Friends of missing people)


LICHTENWALNER Pamela (US) – Researcher and public educator

Scientology in public education in America



Part II


Potpourri – Exchange of information open to all participants


TINELLI Lorita – President of CeASP (IT)

ARKEON – a perfect example of “psycho-sect” in Italy


DELPECHE Claude & GERARD Delphine (FR) – President and Psychologist of AFSI (FR)

Beware of induced false memories


DUJMIC-DELCOURT Branka (Croatia) – President of the Centre of Information on sects and cults (CISK)

My implication


DUBROW-MARSHALL Rod (UK)  – Dean of Humanities and Social Sciences, University of Glamorgan, Wales

How to identify dangerous cults, their leaders and the harm that they do –  How scientific research developments should inform governments, policy and law


RADIGOIS Jean-Yves (FR) – Doctor’s thesis in the Education Faculty, University of Sherbrooke (Québec) and the Institut de Psychologie et Sociologie Appliquées (IPSA), U C O (Angers)

The child in a cultic environment: contribution to a model of intervention by public authorities


NOWAKOWSKI Piotr T. (PL), doctor of pedagogy; Assistant Professor at The John Paul II Catholic University of Lublin – Off-Campus Faculty of Social Sciences in Stalowa Wola

Polish educational system with regard to the cult problem




[1] A Comparison of Different Countries Approaches to Cult-Related Issues

Mike Kropveld, Executive Director, Info-Cult (Montréal)

FECRIS Acts – Hamburg – 2007