The twins were nine years old at the time.
Made commanders of the newly formed God's Army, rumours quickly spread that that the twins were immune to bullets _ and that they could make bullets invincible just by holding them.
"It is true that we lead the army, but it wasn't all true that were planning and strategising," Luther Htoo, a grown adult but remarkably diminutive in stature, told Spectrum.
The 200-strong guerilla force comprising God's Army bandied legends that while Luther commanded 250,000 invisible soldiers, Johnny commanded 150,000. The twins were supposedly born with mythical black tongues, a sign of legendary power.
In 2000, images of the young twins smoking cigarettes _ the first photographs of the Htoos to be released _ hit news stands across the globe and propelled the rebels to a degree of international notoriety. The two became most known for the God's Army capture of a hospital in Ratchaburi the same year _ where the army demanded the Thai government cease from shelling Karen border outposts, while holding hundreds hostage. After failing at conciliation with the government, the twins turned themselves in to Thai authorities the next year, in exchange for asylum, revealing that they were simply pink-tongued children. Johnny Htoo, however, returned to Myanmar to turn himself in to the government.
It has been 13 years since the Htoos were introduced to the world. But Luther Htoo, who is now 25 years old, made his way back to Thailand last week. Through an interpreter, he spoke to Spectrum about his departure from Thailand four years ago and the truth behind God's Army.
He currently lives in Sweden as a fugitive, while his family resides in a refugee camp in Kanchanaburi province.
"I will seek citizenship from the Swedish government. Once I become a citizen, I will try to get my family out of the refugee camp for them to have a better life," Luther Htoo said.
Although he declined to identify which of his family members are in the refugee camp, Luther Htoo added, ''I will do anything for us to be together again.''
When asked about the myriad mythologies that characterise God's Army, Luther Htoo admitted that most of them were rumours. What made the twins special, he said, was exactly that _ they were twins.
''Back at that time, we were the only twins in the village. That's what made us unique. When a pastor introduced us to God's Army, they made us lead the whole army because they said our will was strong.
''There were some senior military officials in God's Army that made all the plans. We just took the ideas and gave them to the rest of the army since they believed in us and had faith in us.''
Luther Htoo explained that God's Army had been part of the KNU until 10 student rebel leaders from Myanmar joined with them. He added that God's Army often had conflicts with the KNU, which caused the army to separate, but still kept with the armed ethnic group's shared cause in fighting against government forces.
''One day, we ran out of bullets and a lot of our people got injured. So, we decided to surrender and give ourselves to the Thai government,'' Luther Htoo said.
''After I turned myself in, I was living in a camp in the Suan Phueng district of Ratchaburi province for one year. Then I was moved to the Sangkhla Buri district of Kanchanaburi province, where I met my ex-wife, and we have one child together. I broke up with her when I moved to Sweden.''
In Myanmar mythology, great warriors _ including King Tabinshethi and King Naresuan _ were said to have been born with black tongues. When asked by Spectrum to show his tongue, Luther Htoo declined, saying the rumour was false.
''There was one kid around our age in the army that had a black tongue, but it was not me,'' he explained.
''He was killed during one of the fights [against the military army]. The rumour came from people who mistakenly confused us. They got confused with our identities.''
Now in its third year of reform, Myanmar's quasi-democratic government is seeking a nation-wide ceasefire accord with the country's armed ethnic groups. Luther Htoo said that ''things won't change overnight'' under Thein Sein's administration.
''The KNU and Burma [Myanmar] have been fighting for many decades. I don't think they can just stop fighting any time soon. I wouldn't trust Burma enough to think of moving back to live there.''
Luther Htoo expressed concerns over his native village. He said that he has been bothered over the unanswered questions of God's Army surrender to Thailand.
''When the Thai government seized 55 people from my troop and the village surrendered on Jan 16, 2001, I wonder what the Thai government did to my people. Are they still alive? Did they all get killed? Where are they at the moment?'' Luther Htoo asked.
''My people turned themselves in willingly at that time, but I don't understand why the government has to hide the information from me. Why can't the Thai military give me their status? What did they do wrong?'' he continued.
Luther Htoo said that the relatives of the missing 55 people are actively looking for them. Surapong Kongchantuk, a member of the Lawyers Council of Thailand, said that the Thai government and military, however, will never disclose information regarding the issue.
''The only information that the government revealed is the number of people who surrendered to the government, which is 27 people. The Thai government never gives out any information to the public, even among Thai people. No one really knows the answer to Luther's question,'' said Mr Surapong, who heads the Council's human rights sub-committee on ethnic minorities, stateless, migrant workers and displaced persons.
The whereabouts of Johnny Htoo, who had turned himself into the custody of the Myanmar government, have been long-since unknown. Luther Htoo revealed that his twin brother now resides in Thailand.
''I visited my brother and my family as soon as I arrived in Thailand. I will be living here for two months. I'm sure I'll go back to visit them again before I head back to Sweden,'' he said.
Today, like many young men, Luther Htoo is focussed on making money.
''I change the place I work a lot because I want to earn a lot of money. Whoever can offer me better money, I will go to work for them,'' he said.
Luther Htoo has settled on a job as a server at a restaurant for now, and lives in a small rented apartment by himself. He plans to study English when he saves enough money.
''I mostly communicate with other people by using the Karen language. I can't speak English, but I do speak some Swedish.''
Luther Htoo still smokes _ the icon that jettisoned him to international fame as a child _ but says he is planning to quit.