This past week, Janice Rita Hamilton, who is the co-founder of a Sydney “sect”, lost her lawsuit against the state of NSW after alleging police had labelled her partner the “pedophile leader of a cult” before he killed himself.
Janice Rita Hamilton, who witnessed her partner Kenneth Emmanuel Dyers’s death in 2007, sued the police claiming damages for “misfeasance in public office”.
Dyers killed himself after being told a detective had written to his solicitor inviting him to be interviewed about numerous sexual assault allegations against him.
Janice Hamilton and Ken Dyers together co-founded the so-called spiritual healing group Kenja – an amalgamation of their names – in 1982.
Here’s everything we know about Kenja – one of Australia’s most infamous ‘cults’, that still exists today.
Sexual abuse charges
Co-founder Ken Dyers had a history of sexual assault charges being made against him.
In 2005, Dyers had been charged with 22 counts relating to the sexual assault of two underage girls who were ex-members of Kenja, according to a 2007 article by The Sydney Morning Herald. At the time, his trial had been deferred as he was deemed mentally unfit.
Upon a third girl coming forward in 2007, Dyers was informed by police of the additional allegations. The next day, the 84-year-old’s body was found in his home. He had died by suicide.
According to Sydney Morning Herald, a girl alleged that when she was a young teenager, Dyers told her she had “sexual degradation in her energy field” that would require him to touch her while naked for the spirit to be cleared.
Upon his death, his partner Janice Hamilton claimed a letter sent to Dyers by police caused psychological harm.
In the NSW Supreme Court on Friday, Justice Michael Walton rejected Hamilton’s claim that the letter was sent with an actual intention of causing harm to Dyers and herself.
She had contended that the letter was "the final, malicious step" taken in an investigation that was carried out in a "highly improper manner".
"The sending of a letter by a police officer carrying out an investigation into alleged criminal activity is ordinarily an exercise of existing public power that falls within its scope," the judge said.