Tag Archives: Michael Travesser

Cult Leader Ordered Released From Prison

   A New Mexico State Appeals court has ordered Wayne Bent, aka Michael Travesser, to be released from prison. In short, the court ruled that the term of the grand jury that indicted Mr. Bent had been extended and that was outside of State statute. Therefore the indictment was void and there were no grounds to prosecute and sentence Mr. Bent.     “Judge Rod Kennedy wrote the opinion for a unanimous three-judge panel, saying the grand jury’s term had expired but then was arbitrarily extended by the district court. “Legally speaking, there was no grand jury convened in this case. Therefore, there was no indictment under the law…” Kennedy wrote. He said the state was free to retry Bent if it chooses. From a news release found here: http://www.daily-times.com/ci_18378400 . We certainly hope the State of New Mexico decides to retry the case.

   For a little background, Wayne Bent is now 70 years old and has been the leader of a small religious cult in New Mexico called “Strong City”. We have referred to his group in previous posts and have shared about one survivor of that group named Prudence Welch. Though there have been no recent updates, her blog is found here: http://www.travesser.info/ . From the National Geographic® site: “Doomsday cult leader Michael Travesser prophesied that the world would end October 31, 2007 — but what happened?” National Geographic® has also done a video series and has a page on their website about this group.  Here is the link: http://channel.nationalgeographic.com/episode/inside-a-cult-3401/Overview#tab-Overview

The video is below. Within the first 20 seconds, Wayne Bent is shown saying, “I am the embodiment of God. I am divinity and humanity combined.” As mentioned before, it is the deed and not the creed. He can believe that all he wants. But, when Wayne Bent encourages young girls who were/are minors to lay naked in his bed and then hold them; I have a problem with that.

Continue reading Cult Leader Ordered Released From Prison

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Which is Worse and Why?

    There are many grievous events and happenings in this world. As humans, we tend to rank events by severity and classify them according to which one is worse than another. Now, it is true that in the legal system, certain crimes committed against many by one or by a few are treated differently than a crime of one against one or for a “lesser” crime. For instance, a person stealing a purse from one person may obtain a lesser sentence than a person stealing purses from several women over time. This is part of our system and the result or consequence tends to be that as individuals we rank crimes or “sins” against people in the same manner.

   However, is that they way we should view crimes when considering how one individual would/could control another? Is it a lesser crime or “sin” to control three folks than to control a hundred or a million people?  I am not talking about the true responsibility of parents to guide and control their children during their formative years. In this post we will consider adults controlling other adults for whatever reason, but, especially those controlled for personal gain of the controller.

    Controllers can be found in many areas of society. You could be controlled by a boss on your job. This control is somehow not deemed as a crime or injustice until that control overreaches into one’s personal life. Why? Because there is a certain amount of compliance or obedience expected during working hours while on the job. So, this kind of control is not viewed as a crime per se. You are in essence trading hours of your day for an amount of dollars and thus you are told what to do while on that job.

   Continue reading Which is Worse and Why?

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Updates on FLDS and Other Groups

Late last year, October 2009, this headline was a first of many…

Raymond Jessop, First FLDS Polygamist to Stand Trial for Sexual Assault on Child Bride

From the article on the CBS News “48 Hours” website…

     Jessop, 38, the first of a dozen polygamist sect members charged with abuse of women, is set to stand trial Monday, 18 months after agents raided the group’s remote ranch and carted off more than 400 children in the largest child custody case in American history. See full article here..

March 20, 2010, this headline tells more of the story..

Jury Sentences FLDS man to 75 years in Prison

 From the Salt Lake Tribune:  A Texas jury has sentenced a polygamous sect member to 75 years in prison on one count of sexually assaulting a 15-year-old girl whom he spiritually married in 2006 while living at a ranch in Schleicher County.

The sentence for Merril Leroy Jessop, 35, is the stiffest yet handed out in the criminal trials of members of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. Under Texas law, Jessop has to serve half of his sentence before he is eligible for parole…. see full article here… http://www.sltrib.com/news/ci_14710442 

Update from Tony Alamo Case:

Seizure of Children at Alamo Compound Upheld

March 2, 2010 from “Courthouse News Service”.. (CN) – An Arkansas appeals court refused to restore custody to five members of the Tony Alamo Christian Ministries, who claimed their boys were unconstitutionally seized from the church’s compound amid allegations that the ministry abused children. 

see full article here.. http://www.courthousenews.com/2010/03/02/25174.htm


Video segments on YouTube.com that were originally aired on National Geographic. Documentary about Michael Trevasser and the cult- Strong City. 

See this link for part one – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ri0MA5D36mQ 

NC Pastor Accused Of Child Molestation

Deputies: Crime Went On For Years     (posted March 19, 2010)

BREVARD, N.C. — The Transylvania County Sheriff’s Office said allegations of child molestation led to the arrest of a pastor.  Michael Waddell Miller, 49, of Pisgah Forest, N.C. is charged with two counts of statutory sex offense and three counts of indecent liberties with a child. (This story is posted just for regional interest)

      see full link here..http://www.wyff4.com/news/22888964/detail.html  

     Interesting photos here of Living Waters activities. http://cid-d90e76c0fdbeadac.profile.live.com/

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Update on Three Jailed Cult Leaders

“To Follow by faith alone is to follow blindly.” Benjamin Franklin

Tony Alamo of Tony Alamo Ministries was sentenced to 175 years in Federal prison for his conviction on 10 counts of taking young girls across state lines for sex. Recently, his attorney was allowed to withdraw from his case… read here http://tiny.cc/NGab9  

Alamo Ministries website is still active, but for how long?  http://alamoministries.com/

America’s Most Wanted has put out a piece on John Erwin Kolbek. He was Tony Alamo’s enforcer and is wanted to face charges. http://tiny.cc/iHUFd  He is on the run from authorities.

Michael Travesser also known as Wayne Bent, was sentenced to ten years in prison stemming from his conviction of sexual misconduct with two young girls. He was the leader of a group called “Strong City” based in New Mexico. See more here http://tiny.cc/VAUNC 

The website for this “ministry” is still active here.. http://strongcity.info/

Prudence Welch is a survivor of this cult and has a website with more info here – http://www.travesser.info/  There also has been a special posted at National Geographic- you can learn more here.. http://tiny.cc/oXEkR

Warren Jeffs of FLDS has been sentenced to two 5 year to life sentences on two counts of being an accomplice to rape in Utah. He will serve at least 10 years for that conviction. Read more here..  http://tiny.cc/6mgiG Last January, court documents say Mr. Jeffs tried to hang himself in his cell. He is awating trial for charges in Arizona and possibly more charges in Texas. Read more here.. http://tiny.cc/i4jGr 

Warren Jeffs bio has been removed from the church website here.. http://tiny.cc/2YK72 

There is a website that shows pictures and videos of the 400 or so children being removed from YFZ Ranch in Eldorado, Texas…  http://www.captivefldschildren.org/

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