A Fairfax County judge has ordered a religious sect not to harass a Falls Church couple that persuaded their 24-year-old daughter to leave the sect last January.
Circuit Court Judge Burch Millsap issued the order Thursday against The Way International to prevent its members from threatening Raymond and Lois Bell.
According to court sources, the Bells and their daughter Sharon testified that sect members began tailing them in cars and prowling around their home as early as February.
Efforts to reach The Way International's Fairfax officer last night for comment were unsuccessful.
Sharon Bell, who graduated from Purdue University last year with a communications degree, testified that the sect used exhaustion and starvation treatments, distributed Kool-Aid mixed with drugs and gave training in the use of weapons.
She testified that she became involved with the sect when a member picked her up as she was hitchhiking to an Indiana church, according to court sources.
The young woman testified that during six months of sect membership, she became a teacher for The Way International and that her primary duty was recruiting on the street. She said she worked as a recruiter in Charleston, N.C., Houston and Laredo, Tex.
Raymond Bell testified he "tricked" his daughter into coming home last January by telling her he was about to undergo eye surgery and wanted to see her before his operation, the court sources said.
The Bells said they arranged 18 days of "deprogramming" for their daughter after she arrived home to dissuade her from returning to the sect.