John Erwin Kolbeck Archive

You'll find articles about this subject in each of the items listed, even if the term does not necessarily occur within the headlines or descriptive text.

2 former members of Tony Alamo cult awarded $33 million each in civil suit

Two former members of Tony Alamo Christian Ministries have been awarded $33 million each after they sued Alamo for ordering them to be beaten.

The two men testified that evangelist Tony Alamo ordered his enforcer, John Kolbek, to beat them.

In October 2009 they were each were awarded $1.5 million from Kolbek after he failed to respond to their lawsuit.

Kolbeck died in January this year of a heart attack while on the run from law enforcement.

The Associated Press reports:

A jury in federal court in Texarkana deliberated for a few hours Thursday before finding Alamo liable for civil damages.

Seth Calagna and Spencer Ondirsek were awarded $30 million each in punitive damages, plus another $3 million each to compensate them for past injuries.

Cult leader Tony Alamo is serving a 175-year prison sentence for taking young girls across state lines for sex.

He was not present at the trial because it would cost too much to bring him from federal prison in Terre Haute, Indiana.

Theologically Tony Alamo Christian Ministries is a cult of Christianity. Sociologically the group has cult-like characteristics as well.

Civil trial to begin for evangelist convicted for taking girls across state lines for sex

Evangelist Tony Alamo, who is serving a 175-year sentence in federal prison for taking young girls across state lines for sex, faces a civil trial starting Tuesday that he ordered the beating of two of his former ministry members.

The Associated Press reports:

In a federal lawsuit filed in 2008 by W. David Carter of Texarkana, Tex., the two young men — Seth Calagna and Spencer Ondirsek — allege that Alamo ordered another man, John Kolbek, to beat them.

Calagna and Ondirsek each were awarded $1.5 million from Kolbek after he failed to respond to their lawsuit. Kolbek died in January.

They’re now seeking damages in the case against Alamo, who is not likely to appear in court in Texarkana, Ark. because it would cost too much to bring him from federal prison in Terre Haute, Ind. […]

The suit seeks damages in excess of $75,000 because the young men “have sustained damages in the form of physical pain and suffering, emotional distress and scarring/disfigurement,” Carter wrote in the complaint.