Evangelist Tony Alamo arrested in child sex probe

Fugitive evangelist Alamo arrested at Ariz. hotel, accused of child porn

FBI agents have arrested fugitive evangelist Tony Alamo at an Arizona motel, accusing him of transporting minors across state lines for sex.

FBI spokesman Steve Frazier in Little Rock said Alamo was staying at the Little America Hotel in Flagstaff, Ariz., when arrested. The evangelist — who began his career as a California street preacher in 1966 — was scheduled for a federal court appearance tomorrow in Flagstaff.

AP report

“He has to have an initial apperance before I can say a whole lot,” Frazier said. He said he did not believe children were with Alamo at the time of the arrest.

Agents arrested Alamo — whose real name is Bernie LaZar Hoffman — on charges that he violated the Mann Act, which prohibits transporting children across state lines for illegal purposes. Frazier described the illegal purposes as “sexual activity.”

Hours earlier The Signal newspaper of Santa Clarita, Calif., reported having an “exclusive” phone interview today with Alamo, who was “waiting at the side of a desert road” for a part to fix his broken down car.

“I’m not on the run,” Alamo said on the phone Thursday from a desert location he would not specify. “I was on my way to Santa Clarita but I got stranded here.”

- Source: Fugitive evangelist Alamo arrested at Ariz. hotel, accused of child porn, USA TODAY blog, Sep. 26, 2008 — Summarized by Religion News Blog

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