13 March 2024

Nowra paedophile and cult leader William Kamm faces Sydney court charged with child grooming offences

| Zoe Cartwright
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Police with two handcuffed people whose faces are blurred

Two people were arrested following an investigation into alleged historical child grooming on the South Coast. Photo: NSW Police.

Convicted paedophile and Nowra cult leader William Kamm, also known as ”Little Pebble”, appeared at the Local Court in the Downing Centre yesterday (12 March), charged with five offences relating to grooming a child for sex.

The 73-year-old and his 58-year-old partner were arrested on Monday after a months-long investigation by Sex Crimes Squad detectives under Strike Force Gandell.

The strike force was established in September 2023 after a 19-year-old woman reported she was groomed as a child by the founder of a religious group and his partner.

Last Thursday (7 March), strike force detectives executed two search warrants – one at the headquarters of the Order of St Charbel religious group in Bangalee, Nowra, on the South Coast, the other at a unit in Sydney’s CBD.

“In Bangalee, police searched a home and two sheds on the property, where they located and seized a number of items relevant to their investigation,” a NSW Police spokesperson said.

“Following further extensive inquiries, about 12:30 pm Monday, 11 March, strike force detectives attended an address in Sydney’s CBD, where they arrested a 73-year-old man and a 58-year-old woman.

“Police will allege in court the pair allegedly groomed a woman – who is known to them – from the age of six years old.”

NSW Sex Crimes Squad commander Jayne Doherty on Monday told media the woman was “incredibly brave” to come forward with the allegations.

Superintendent Doherty said the woman had been told as a six-year-old that she was “selected to procreate” with Kamm to “build a new sect”.

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Supt Doherty said police alleged Kamm had been making phone calls to the girl and writing letters to her while he was in custody.

She said he also sent the girl handmade gifts from jail.

Police allege the gifts and letters were passed from Kamm to the girl via his wife.

The pair was taken to Day Street Police Station, where the woman was charged with grooming a child under 14 years for unlawful sexual activity and grooming a child for unlawful sexual activity.

Kamm was charged with one count of grooming a child under 14 years for unlawful sexual activity, one count of grooming a child for unlawful sexual activity, one count of aggravated inciting a person to do a sexual act, and two counts of failing to comply with a supervision order.

He did not apply for bail, and did not enter a plea. He remains remanded in custody to appear again on 14 March.

Kamm was conditionally released from prison in 2014 after serving nine years of a 10-year sentence for several sexual attacks against women.

Two of his victims were just 15 years old.

His release conditions specified that he may not have unsupervised contact with people below 18, and initially that he was not to return to the Order of St Charbel compound in the Shoalhaven.

He overturned the condition that he not return to the commune in 2021 when Supreme Court Justice Stephen Campbell said the risk of Kamm reoffending could be managed with electronic monitoring and other restrictions.

This is not the first time Kamm has been charged with allegedly breaching his release conditions.

In November 2021, he was back in custody after allegedly contacting teenage girls via social media. The then 71-year-old was charged with four counts of failing to comply with a supervision order, and in November 2022, pleaded guilty to the charges.

He was released with time served after spending a year and six days on remand.

He was also charged with breaching his supervision order again in 2023, by accessing the internet incognito.

His extended supervision order is due to expire in 2025.

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The Order of St Charbel, of which Kamm is the head, is a disavowed Catholic sect, or doomsday cult.

Based just outside Nowra, the cult believes Kamm communicates directly with the Virgin Mary.

Kamm claims the Virgin Mary has told him he must take 12 queens and 72 princesses as wives to spawn a new human race after the world is cleansed and burnt by a ball of fire.

Kamm has made several prophecies that have never been fulfilled, including that Pope John Paul II would consecrate him as a bishop and appoint him to the papacy.

Pope John Paul II has since died.

The Order of St Charbel claims to be part of the Catholic Church, but the Maronite Church and the Holy See do not regard the group as being part of Roman Catholicism.

Original Article published by Zoe Cartwright on Region Illawarra.

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