Authorities looking for vehicle believed to be used by wanted charismatic ex-con.
A federal arrest warrant has been issued for Bernie LaZar
Hoffman, better known as Tony Alamo, the ex-con leader of the Tony
Alamo Christian Ministries
with a compound on Sierra Highway
near Agua Dulce.
It was reported that FBI agents, with support from local
sheriff deputies and county child welfare workers, visited the compound early
Sunday morning, but no one was taken into custody. It is not known how many
adults or children are living at the Saugus
Lt. Mark Hershey of the Santa Clarita sheriff's station confirmed that the station was advised that a federal warrant had been issued for Hoffman/Alamo. Sgt. Darren Harris told KHTS that deputies have been given a description of the vehicle
Hoffman/Alamo is believed to be using.
Alamo served four years of a six year
sentence for tax evasion, leaving prison in 1998. His cult-like ministries
embrace a philosophy that supports polygamy and sex with underage girls and
have established compounds in California,
New Jersey, Georgia
and Arkansas. Because of its
anti-Catholic, anti-homosexual and anti-government stance, the Alamo
organization is considered a hate group.
The Fouke, Arkansas
compound, near Texarkana, was
raided Saturday by state and federal law enforcement officials in response to
allegations of child abuse and pornography. During Saturday’s raid, six young
girls were taken into protective custody. Hearings for the girls, who are
between 10 and 17 years of age, will begin on Friday and continue on Monday.
To read the first story in this chapter of the Alamo saga, click here .