1988 Child Abuse Charges Against Tony Alamo Were Dropped Due to His Imprisonment for Tax Evasion!

Tony Alamo has a document on his website with headlines from newspapers stating “Lawyers Drop Alamo Case”, “Alamo Child Abuse Charges Dropped”, ” Evangelist Alamo Won’t Face Child Abuse Charges”, and so on, but there are no articles to follow, only the headlines. The reason for this is clear. Tony Alamo has claimed that the charges were dropped because he was innocent but the articles that belong to the headlines tell another story. A story of Tony Alamo in hiding for several years once he found out there was an investigation and then a long drawn-out trial for tax evasion that became the focus of prosecutors instead of the child abuse charges. Research the articles for yourself and you will not find one that says Tony Alamo was innocent of the charges or that the charges were dropped because Alamo was found not guilty. Below is just one of the articles in their entirety.

Los Angeles Times
March 7, 1995
by MarK Sabbatini

Abuse Charges Against Evangelist Are Dropped: Prosecutors won’t pursue case against Tony Alamo, accused in beating of an 11-year-old, because he has been imprisoned for tax evasion.
[Valley Edition]

Prosecutors have decided not to pursue a child abuse case against flamboyant evangelist Tony Alamo because of a six-year federal prison sentence he received last year for tax evasion, authorities said.

Alamo was accused of ordering followers at his Saugus church in 1988 to paddle a misbehaving 11-year-old boy about 140 times. The evangelist’s case has been frequently delayed because he was a fugitive for two years and was then tried and convicted on the tax charges.

Alamo would probably have served only five months in state prison if convicted of child-abuse and child-endangerment charges, Deputy Dist. Atty. John Asari said. He said that wasn’t a long enough addition to the federal prison sentence to fight what would have been a difficult trial.

“Obviously, memories dim over a period of years and that hurts the prosecution,” Asari said.

Bringing in witnesses who live out of state and requiring Jeremiah Miller, now 18, to recount the experience would have been difficult, Asari said. Miller won $550,000 in damages in a civil lawsuit in 1990 over the incident.

“We contacted (Miller) beforehand and he said he had no objection to (the decision not to pursue charges),” Asari said. “He’s willing to testify, but as you can imagine, at the age of 18 he’s got a lot of other things going on with his life.”

Asari announced the decision to Los Angeles Superior Court Judge J. Stephen Czuleger on Friday.

“We’re very pleased that there was a decision, but it took a long time for it,” said Alamo’s attorney, Susan James. James said Alamo, who is serving his sentence at a federal prison in Florence, Colo., continues to deny any involvement in the beating.

Miller testified at a 1991 preliminary hearing that four followers, on Alamo’s orders, beat him for alleged misbehavior ranging from asking a science question in a history class to wearing a scarf designed by Alamo without permission.

Alamo disappeared in 1989 when he learned authorities were investigating the incident. He was recaptured in July, 1991.

He was convicted last June of filing a false tax return in 1985 and none at all the following three years. He received the maximum prison sentence and a $210,000 fine. Local prosecutors subsequently discussed a plea bargain in the child abuse case, but no settlement could be reached.

Alamo, whose real name is Bernie Lazar Hoffman, and his wife, Susan, founded the Holy Alamo Christian Church in the 1960s, taking young dropouts and drug users off the streets of Los Angeles and providing them with food, shelter and anti-Catholic religious lectures.

His communes and church-owned businesses earned millions of dollars in the 1970s and ’80s, in part by using free labor provided by followers in California, Arkansas and Tennessee. Especially lucrative were rhinestone-studded denim jackets, which sold in exclusive boutiques for up to $600.

Legal battles and odd incidents have surrounded the church for years. When his wife died of cancer in 1982, Alamo displayed her body in their Arkansas mansion for several weeks, stating he expected her to rise from the dead.

She was later interred in a marble mausoleum, but her body was stolen in 1991 and has not been recovered.

James said Alamo’s church is still active, but Alamo is not presiding over it while in prison. She said he still faces a number of legal
battles ahead, including a bankruptcy case and appeals on the tax conviction and Miller’s civil case.

“I anticipate he’ll be litigating for many more years,” she said.

Credit: Los Angeles Times

In: 1990-1999, Secrets Exposed!

| Back to Top |
Want to help?

Click the button!

Post A Comment

Please note: All comments are moderated. There is no need to resubmit your comment. Please submit a well thought out post with proper punctuation and spelling, so that it can be reviewed and posted promptly (as space allows).

Time limit is exhausted. Please reload CAPTCHA.