Orlando’s ABC News affiliate reports:
Channel 9 is learning more about an alleged “cult-like” secret society operating within Leesburg High School involving both faculty and students. Records show it was started as some kind of religious group by two school employees and a few former students.
Gabriel Fielder has requested a chance to resign in lieu of termination after a report was made to Leesburg police by a former student who said he was “a member of a secret society at Leesburg High School called the Elder Council.”
State records show Fielder and a guidance counselor named Leonardo Finelli started a nonprofit group in 2019 named Elder Council, Inc. It’s described in part as setup for “not-for-profit missions and teaching activities for the greatest evangelical Christian church globally.”
Orlando’s Fox affiliate reports:
The former student also told police that the guidance counselor once sent sexual text messages to him and asked to “meet up.”
The man told police that he did not meet up with Finello. Once he graduated, however, he told police the two were in a romantic relationship for about three months, the report stated.
While the text messages were “romantic” in nature, they did not contain sexually explicit or pornographic images, the report stated. Because the alleged sexual activity was between two consenting adults, no criminal charges were filed.
The number of members of the group, which has now reportedly disbanded, is not yet clear. The incorporation papers for the nonprofit list a 13-acre Marion County property owned by Felder as its address.