John Popowich, a Canadian police officer, was paid $1.3 million dollars in an out of court settlement last month, according the Canadian Globe and Mail. The settlement marked the conclusion of a malicious prosecution lawsuit he filed against Canadian authorities in 1994. Popowich was falsely charged as a satanic cult criminal. He also received an official apology from the government. However, he and his family suffered needlessly for years until his name was finally cleared.

All the evidence, which supported his alleged crimes was proven baseless. Popowich was arrested solely based upon statements made by children through a discredited interview process. Those statements were later dismissed as false.

This is a sad example of the Satanism hysteria, which hit America in the late 80s and 90s. That “Satanic panic” was often fueled by sensational and bizarre stories about secret Satanic cults, “ritual abuse,” human sacrifice, “breeders” who produced infants for slaughter and other fantastic claims.

Many families suffered and reputations were ruined through needless witch-hunts. Ultimately, objective research and official reports proved these claims were most often based upon false memories, fantasies and/or delusional thinking. No network of violent and destructive Satanic cults and/or web of related conspiracies has ever been proven to exist.

Sadly, there is still a subculture of so-called “survivors” in America that persist with such claims and who have their own network of support groups. And like other conspiracy theorists, no amount of proof seems sufficient to dissuade them.


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