The defense lawyer of psychic João Teixeira de Faria, known as João de Deus, 76, is expected today (Dec. 17) to file a request for habeas corpus to reverse the medium’s preventive detention, with no defined duration, into house arrest with bracelet use.
Lawyer Alberto Toron said his old age and health condition should be taken into account. He pointed out that João de Deus underwent treatment for cancer in the stomach and has heart disease.
The medium is targeted by allegations of sexual abuse during spiritual sessions by over 300 women. Some accusations are over 30 years old, and incidents are said to have taken place when they were still teenagers.
He turned himself in to the police on Sunday (16) in the town of Abadiância, Goiás, where his sessions were held. The medium was questioned for over three hours about what his accusers claimed. He denied the accusations and presented his version of the stories.
Before his testimony, head commissioner André Fernandes had said the psychic would be questioned about each one of the 15 testimonies individually. The allegations involve different crimes, he said, with several attacks on customs and fraud.
“In these testimonies, there is a common act, a common modus operandi. We notice a behavior pattern,” the commissioner said.
On Sunday, prosecutors in Goiás confirmed that João de Deus withdrew $8.95 million from accounts and investments after the first molestation reports surfaced. The information is believed to have sped up the ruling of his preventive arrest.