Twelve in religious group charged with girl's murder

Twelve people are set to front court after being charged with the murder of an eight-year-old girl to whom they allegedly denied medical treatment in southern Queensland.

Police have charged seven women and five men, aged from 19 to 65, with killing Elizabeth Struhs at home at Rangeville near Toowoomba six months ago.

The eight-year-old died on January 7 after her parents and the 12 others allegedly withheld her diabetes medication for six days and prayed over her body, instead of alerting authorities as her health deteriorated.

All 12 were due to face the Toowoomba Magistrates Court today.

Elizabeth's parents Kerrie Elizabeth Struhs (46) and Jason Richard Struhs (50) have already been charged with her murder, torture and failing to provide the necessities of life.

Detective Acting Superintendent Garry Watts says it's a "very sad set of circumstances" and the investigation has taken a toll on police.

"An eight-year-old child dying, in the way we allege she did, is very dramatic for all involved," he told Nine's Today programme.

"I pay testament to the investigators' ability and their commitment to the job over the last six months. They have worked tirelessly to examine all bits of evidence in relation to this matter."

A 60-year-old man has been charged with murder and failing to supply the necessaries of life.

Seven women - aged 20, 24, 26, 29, 32, 35 and 65 - have been charged with murder, as well as four men, aged 19, 21, 24 and 32.

Det Supt Watts said all 12 and Elizabeth's parents were members of a religious group, comprising three families.

"They had had, I would suggest, some differing views in relation to quite a number of things, and that's probably best where I will leave it," the detective said.

Elizabeth's adult sister Jayde Struhs claimed her family were members of a "fear-driven cult" that she fled at age 16.

"They take the religion to its extremes - separating us from the real world and extended family who did not believe," Ms Struhs wrote on her GoFundMe page.

Elizabeth's death left her "shattered and heartbroken" but Ms Struhs was determined to keep her memory alive.

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