Church leader arrested on sex charges

May 6, 2008 10:55:08 AM PDT
New Mexico state police say they've arrested the leader of an apocalyptic church on sex charges. State police spokesman Peter Olson says 66-year-old Wayne Bent was picked up without incident Tuesday at the remote former ranch where he and his followers live. He's facing three charges of criminal sexual contact.

Bent goes by the name of Michael Travesser and claims to be the Messiah. State child welfare officials say there have been allegations of inappropriate contact between Bent and children at the northeastern New Mexico compound.

Bent has acknowledged having sex with his followers, but police haven't detailed the allegations against him. Officials recently removed two girls and a boy from the compound.